If I push the ball…

Coding has always been somewhat mind-boggling to me. I’ve never fully been able to wrap my mind around why typing in a certain code works the way it does. This is even more dejecting when I consider the fact that this is what my boyfriend does for a living. But It’s confusing to me. Massively so. Still, I imagine a book like I Can Conde: If/Then by Vicky Fang would definitely be one we’d want to read to our children one day.

The Coding

I was actually genuinely surprised that the book included real coding language. And I have mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, it’s a great thing to introduce. On the other, I don’t know how much young children will understand it. A part of me thinks this is the kind of book that’s meant to sort of follow a reader and that they’ll return to it repeatedly. In the end, it’s certainly a very interesting concept.

And I love the idea of introducing coding information to kids early.

The Story

Admittedly, there’s not a lot to the story. It’s just an account of a father and daughter at the park. The story uses if/then scenarios to help illustrate how coding works. All these scenarios are very realistic and simple, but I think they do an excellent job of starting the introduction. It’s honestly a very cute trip to the park and I love how it was focused on a father and daughter, too.

The language is a bit advanced at times, using words like condition, but the if/then scenarios are at least presented simply.

The Artwork

Illustrated by Jade Orlando, this book is actually pretty amazing as far as the artwork goes. Yes, it’s all simple, but I loved how the background was grid-like, very reminiscent for me of technology and math. The colors are bright and vibrant, making it very easy to engage young readers. It also does an excellent job of portraying how coding relates to if/then.

I think, overall, this is a pretty solid book. It definitely allows the opportunity for education and I hope empowers a whole new set of young coders. I’m truly excited that this book exists.

I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


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