Where to Begin When Learning to Code

Why HTML and CSS are important when starting to learn to code?

Finding Some Direction

It’s hard to know where to begin when learning to code. Many will begin simply where they
have an interest. This could mean JavaScript, CSS, Ruby, or Python. Where should someone start when just beginning to learn to code? With HTML? And here’s why: most people have to start somewhere, so why not at the beginning?

HTML & CSS

Many people, including coding bootcamps, and online articles will tell you that starting with
HTML, and moving into CSS is logical. Logical thinking is what you need when learning to
code because then it is all going to make sense.

HTML shows you the basic syntax, layout, and content of a web page. It is easy to understand, and gives a person the very basic foundation of learning how to build something on the Internet.

When learning in school, we learn our alphabet before we learn words, spelling, and how to read. It is the same with HTML. It is the A, B, C’s of coding. If HTML is the ABC’s, then CSS are the words that letters form. CSS takes the simplicity of HTML and gives it pizzazz. It can turn a boring page into something that another person will want to look at, read, and learn from. One of my favorite sites to visit happens to be CSS Zen Garden, because it showcases what can be done with CSS. It is great for new coders to see the power of design and color.

Where to Learn

Greatest places to learn and build on what I have learned, that I have found have been are
Codecademy.com, freeCodeCamp.org, Udemy.com, YouTube.com, and CodePen.com. You
will often hear of GitHub.com and StackOverflow.com, but I would only recommend
participating on either of those sites after a person feels comfortable creating with HTML
and CSS.

CodePen.com provides a “coding playground” where you can test out your code, build your
webpage or application, fork other code to learn from it and change it, and save it to
showcase your work to others. Learning from others is always best when it comes to
coding.

There Are No Limits

When learning, a person should never let time distract them from grasping their subject
matter. It is not a race to learn it all as fast as possible. It doesn’t matter how old or young a
person is. Take all the time you need. Read it, practice it, build with it until you really
understand it. Then learn something else that builds on what you just learned. This is why
HTML is a great place to start, because once you understand it, then you can learn CSS,
which utilizes the familiarity of HTML to create beautifully responsive web pages. After CSS,
JavaScript will give the learner the ability to add functionality to their website. These 3
languages will give you the foundation to start your coding journey, and be your basic
building blocks for where ever you choose to go from there.

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