by Jason R. Briggs
December 2012, 344 pp.
"By the end of the book you have a fully-functional platform game running, and most likely a head full of ideas about your next game . . . Python for Kids is just as good an introduction for adults learning to code."
Python is a powerful, expressive programming language that’s easy to learn and fun to use! But books about learning to program in Python can be kind of dull, gray, and boring, and that’s no fun for anyone.
Python for Kids brings Python to life and brings you (and your parents) into the world of programming. The ever-patient Jason R. Briggs will guide you through the basics as you experiment with unique (and often hilarious) example programs that feature ravenous monsters, secret agents, thieving ravens, and more. New terms are defined; code is colored, dissected, and explained; and quirky, full-color illustrations keep things on the lighter side.
Chapters end with programming puzzles designed to stretch your brain and strengthen your understanding. By the end of the book you’ll have programmed two complete games: a clone of the famous Pong and “Mr. Stick Man Races for the Exit”—a platform game with jumps, animation, and much more.
As you strike out on your programming adventure, you’ll learn how to:
Why should serious adults have all the fun? Python for Kids is your ticket into the amazing world of computer programming.
For kids ages 10+ (and their parents)
The code in this book runs on almost anything: Windows, Mac, Linux, even an OLPC laptop or Raspberry Pi!
Featuring original artwork by Miran Lipovača!
About the Author
Jason Briggs has been a programmer since the age of eight, when he first learned BASIC on a Radio Shack TRS-80. Since then he has written software professionally as a developer and systems architect and served as Contributing Editor for Java Developer's Journal. His articles have appeared in JavaWorld, ONJava and ONLamp. Python for Kids is his first book.
Table of Contents
About the Author and Technical Reviewers
Part I: Learning to Program
Chapter 1: Not All Snakes Slither
Part II: Bounce!
Chapter 13: Beginning Your First Game: Bounce!
Part III: Mr. Stick Man Races for the Exit
Chapter 15: Creating Graphics for the Mr. Stick Man Game
Afterword: Where to Go from Here
"Jason Briggs manages to successfully describe programming to kids without sounding like he’s dumbing down the content. . . . The lessons are well-constructed and leave the reader with a feeling of accomplishment in each chapter."
"This book offers a good introduction to computer programming. . . . Using Python for Kids to learn this skill would be an excellent family bonding experience, and the added perk of jointly creating a computer game wouldn't hurt."
"Easy to read, provides sound programming advice and very clear explanations of how programming languages work. A great book for anyone who wants to break into programming without pangs of inadequacy."
"The use of colorized text in this book makes the material so much easier to comprehend and read . . . I am now generally conversant with the basic tools used in Python."
"The book is well-written, engaging, and full of simple words for simple people like me. . . There's nothing quite like seeing the simple lines of code create something on the screen and knowing how and why it happened."
"The book is engaging and full of colors to keep young readers engaged in their programming adventures . . . I recommend this book to both kids and new users who wish to learn Python."
"The nice, easy to read style of the book that keeps to a gamification style of programming throughout will certainly appeal to youngsters."
"A step-by-step guide that is equal parts serious coding instructions and light-hearted jokes and project instructions. Aimed at expanding the horizons of each student."
"The author’s writing style and the cute little cartoon character illustrations scattered throughout the book made it much less 'dry' than a typical computer programming guide."
"Whoever you are, if you're looking for an in-depth yet very accessible approach to learning to program, Python for Kids offers a whole lot of knowledge in a step-by-step way that will have you writing code in no time at all."