Just because your kids like to play video games doesn’t mean they should learn to program. You drive all the time. Does this mean you should be a car mechanic? Probably not. Very few kids should learn to write code. 

Kids who play video games have the opportunity to learn a wide range of things—writing, politics, long-term planning. None of these areas are appealing to a person who has a brain for writing code. People who are great at writing code are short-term problem solvers. They like routine and order and structure. My son plays Style Savvy, which rewards people skills, not routine problem solving. My other son plays Tiny Zoo, which rewards a passion for animals and breeding them. My point is that just because a kid likes video games doesn’t mean he should write code.

I’m blown away by all the places that make writing code easy for kids. Who cares? Who wants their kid to grow up and write code? Ten years from now most of the jobs for writing code will be like most of the jobs at your auto mechanics. Specialized, low-paying, and boring.

This all reminds me of the scene in The Graduate, where someone gives the stunningly stupid advice: “Plastics.” The protagonist should go into plastics. The career that is hot now is never going to be hot when your kids have careers. That’s not how the job market unfolds. In the 70s it was real estate, in the 80s it was banking. In the 90s it was the Internet. Right now it’s writing code. There is probably zero unemployment for people who can write code today. But that’s not going to be true in ten years.

So stop thinking your kid needs to write code. Stop thinking, in fact, that you have any idea what job would be right for your kid in ten years. If you knew what would be happening in ten years, you’d be a billionaire. Because no one knows.

If you think writing code is so great, then you should learn to do it. Let your kids figure out what’s going to be next. Becuase they’re going to be way better at that than you are.