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Most kids want to write computer code

Nesta, the Nominet Trust and Mozilla launch their £225,000 Digital Makers programme today

The majority of UK children want to learn to write computer code and create online games, websites and mobile apps, shows new YouGov research.

The research, commissioned by Mozilla, has been published as innovation foundation Nesta, the Nominet Trust and Mozilla launch their Digital Makers programme, a £225,000 fund to stimulate and promote digital skills across the UK.

The YouGov findings - based on a survey of 515 children between the age of 8 and 15 - show that 75 percent of British children online are "very or fairly interested" in making their own projects online, like creating their own online game, website or phone app.

In addition over two-thirds (67 percent) are either very or fairly interested in learning to program and write computer code. But only 3 percent say they already know how to.

The results are supported by the popularity of the recently launched Raspberry PI device which helps students write basic computer code for applications.

The Digital Makers fund will support projects which equip young people (ages 4-18) with the skills they need to become "confident digital contributors and makers" and creating new "places" for learning - online, at home, during out of school clubs and play camps, for instance.

Geoff Mulgan, chief executive at Nesta, said, "By equipping children and young people with the necessary skills early on we can help them not just to use and consume digital technologies but also to create them, to be digital makers. The payoff for them will be more opportunities in a jobs market where these skills will be in ever greater demand."

The fund is now open for bids. Grants will be awarded in March 2013.

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