Ready, Set, Code!

Coding Activities for Kids

August 2020
More details
  • Publisher
    CSIRO Publishing
  • Published
    11th August 2020
  • ISBN 9781486312351
  • Language English
  • Pages 120 pp.
  • Size 8" x 9"
  • Images 136 color illus, 16 color photos

Are you ready to learn about real technology and make it yourself?

Ready, Set, Code! explains how cutting-edge digital technology works and its surprising uses now and in the future. Filled with interesting examples, each chapter explores a different topic, such as artificial intelligence, sensors and data, and applies it with a fun, hands-on coding project. You will learn how to create your own chatbot, translate messages into different languages, construct a burglar alarm, make digital art and music, and launch a citizen science project. Plus, you’ll learn how to protect yourself online and much more.

Suitable for beginners, this book provides illustrated step-by-step instructions to teach kids to code with the highly acclaimed Scratch programming language, popular micro:bit mini computers and simple app building tools.


  • Simple and fun ways to get children creating with code
  • Real-world technologies explained
  • Engaging projects kids can do over and over again
  • Can be used by families and in classrooms
  • Compelling storytelling that encourages a creative mindset

"This book is an excellent supplement for those who are already learning coding in the classroom. It even comes with a link for teachers to download resources and activities. It provides easy-to-read instructions for children to code and provides the background and explanation of it all as well. This informative guide is filled with information to make any coder feel confident in what they are learning!"

The Children’s Book Review

“Coding is awesome. It is the language of now and definitely the language of the future. But how does coding work? Is it just one language? And how do you possibly learn to code? Well this brilliant book will get you there. Take your marks ... It’s time to Ready, Set, Code!"

Adam Spencer, Author, Comedian, Maths Geek

"This book has it all – software programming, physical sensors, radio waves, natural language processing and more – enabling children to create their best digital future."

Hal Speed, Chief of Global Engagement, Micro:bit Educational Foundation

"Ready, Set, Code! will engage all learners with its bright, creative approach to problem solving and coding. After understanding core concepts, students are encouraged to put that learning into action and build with code straight away. This delightful book starts with the basics – without being basic! The first coding lesson is building a chatbot so coders begin with something exciting. This engagement continues right through to the end as students discover how coding is used in art, science, music, cybersecurity and more. Written with young people in mind, this book is also a handy resource for teachers and parents too."

Sarah Moran, Co-Founder and CEO, Girl Geek Academy

"A great book for curious minds interested in creating real technology projects! Full of hands on activities, there’s something for everyone from animal enthusiasts, to budding musicians, to aspiring cyber detectives. A great way to learn about how technology is used everywhere in the world around us, with Ready, Set, Code! you can learn how to make tech creations that help around the house, observe the environment, make music and more! Get started with coding these fun projects and see the kinds of careers you can dream of in the world of technology."

Renee Noble, Software Engineer at Grok Learning; Director of the Girls' Programming Network

"Ready, Set, Code! is the resource every computer science teacher needs to engage students! The book focuses first on students’ areas of interest and then looks at how computer science connects with what gets kids excited. Interested in art, music, busting cybercriminals? This resource has it all! The layout is fun and inviting, and the step-by-step instructions with visual aids inspire interest and enthusiasm for the most novice of coders to get started today! This book moves our students from users of technology to creators."

Angela Cleveland, co-author of 50+ Tech Tools for School Counselors: How to Be More Engaging, Efficient, and Effective

"This book takes a unique approach that enables beginners in coding to have a taste of programming in multiple situations, based around authentic contexts, and supported by back stories from people who work in these areas as a career."

Professor Tim Bell, Computer Scientist, University of Canterbury

1: Anyone can code!
2: Build a chatbot
3: The art of code
4: I spy some sensors
5: Coding is music to my ears
6: Stop thieves with radio waves
7: Swarms in the skies
8: Data explosion!
9: Busting cybercrime
10: Say what, Siri?
11: Coding careers

Heather Catchpole

Heather Catchpole is a children’s author and founder of the phenomenally successful Careers with Code magazines. Produced in partnership with Google, over 1.5 million copies of these magazines have been distributed in the USA, New Zealand and Australia. Heather is a passionate advocate for science, technology, engineering and math and an entrepreneur and co-founder of Refraction Media. Her goal is to create a digital future with humanity and creativity.

Nicola O’Brien

Nicola O’Brien is the founder of Code Rangers, a start-up that teaches kids to code and helps teachers to bring coding to their schools. She currently works at the Australian Computing Academy, University of Sydney. She is a computing education specialist tasked with creating and delivering engaging curriculum-aligned content on digital technologies.

coding, technology, education, activities, children