Let’s face it: Programming is hard. Even if you have years of experience under your belt, it feels like there is always something new to learn. It can be very frustrating for new programmers who want to learn how to code. Many beginners don’t know where to start or even how to start.
Now, you might be asking who I am. My name is Jsquared and I am a 17 year old programmer, web developer, and cybersecurity enthusiast. I have been writing code since I was around 6 or 7 years old, with my first programs being simple games written in Python. As I learned more, I became more fascinated, I was able to code much cooler things than simple games, and over years I learned invaluable lessons that made me a better programmer. I believe that anyone can learn to code and in this blog I want to share some tips that has helped me in my journey of programming.
These are some general advice on how to be successful in learning how to code. It’s important to know that you can take multiple approaches to learning programming and there is no one answer but these are the ones that have helped me the most Later on, I will write a blog with resources that I used to learn how to code.
1. Take Time Learning the fundamentals
Getting a good grasp of the fundamentals is critically important to achieving long-term success. The foundational knowledge you learn at the beginning of your programming journey will allow you to grasp the logic of more complicated topics further along. If you don’t learn basic computer programming, you could fall behind in the future. So, even if the fundamentals seem boring or unimportant at first, you need to recognize how important it is to learn them.
2. It’s Okay to Ask for Help
Knowing when to ask for help is a skill you’ll need throughout the course of your life, not just when it comes to programming. To put it simply, you aren’t going to know everything, especially when you’re just starting out. The fastest and easiest way to gain the skills you need to have to be a programmer is to ask those who have the answers. After you try to figure out the answer to your question on your own, be sure to ask someone else. Whether you do it in person or online, speaking to your mentor or teacher and listening to what they have to say is critical when you are learning to become a computer programmer.
3. MAKE STUFF!!
If you really want to learn how to code, you need to do more than just read the book and take some notes. You need to put the information you’re learning into action. You might be surprised at how something you read can seem so simple until you try to do it for yourself. Therefore, you should actually start coding as you’re learning. That way, you put the information to use immediately. When you learn by doing, the information will be more likely to stick with you. Plus you can put your projects on GitHub to show off to potential employers.
4. Use the Internet to your Advantage
These days, you can find countless sources of information on the internet on just about any topic. This information can be especially helpful when you are learning how to code. Whether you decide to sign up for a coding boot camp or simply want to check out free tutorials on YouTube or other streaming services, you can learn a lot about coding by just going online. One of the main benefits of learning this way is that you can find the answers you need in many different formats. Therefore, if one explanation doesn’t make sense to you, you can always find a different explanation elsewhere. It’s a win-win!
5. Don’t Just read Source Code
When you get your hands on some source code, it’s easy to just read through it and think you have an understanding of what’s going on. But when you really want to become a computer programmer, you’re going to have to take this a step further. You should actually run the code and tinker with it to figure out how it truly works. This is a much more effective way to learn than simply reading through the code. Remember, being able to read the code isn’t the same as understanding it. As a programmer, you need to cultivate a deep level of understanding, and playing around with sample code is a great way to do that.
Learning how to code may seem scary at first but as you learn more, you’ll realize that it’s actually very fun. Don’t think that you’re the only one that is having a hard time learning how to code. Everyone is going/went through the same thing. I went through the same thing too. It’s simply apart of the process. If you consistently learn and hone your skills, I guarantee you that you will see improvement and growth.
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Once again, thank you for reading! I really appreciate it! 🙂