At vero eos et accusamus et iusto odio dignissimos ducimus qui blanditiis praesentium voluptatum deleniti atque corrupti quos dolores et quas molestias excepturi sint occaecati cupiditate non provident, similique sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollitia animi, id est laborum et dolorum fuga. Et harum quidem rerum facilis est et expedita distinctio. Nam libero tempore, cum soluta nobis est eligendi optio cumque nihil impedit quo minus id quod maxime placeat facere possimus, omnis voluptas assumenda est, omnis dolor repellendus. Itaque earum rerum hic tenetur a sapiente delectus, ut aut reiciendis voluptatibus maiores alias consequatur aut perferendis doloribus asperiores repellat.
Yes and no. An eleven year old, assuming they're reasonably literate and intelligent, could learn Python, I'd go as far as to say *should* learn Python. But I think it's going to be very difficult to do that using this course. The course is doable, but it assumes everyone is really good at maths ~ at MIT, everyone is. It's important to note that the course was never designed to teach Python and isn't very good at doing that. It's really aimed at teaching the basics of the science of computation and introducing programming to MIT students who aren't specialising in those fields. It does seem very good at doing that. There are some really good resources freely available that'd be far better suited to a youngster wanting to get some programming skills. What you don't want is for them to have to really struggle with grasping mathematical concepts way beyond the reach of a normal child of that age whilst they're simultaneously try to not only understand and solve the problem posed, but also express their solution in a programming language they're still trying to learn, all whilst using a bunch of other features on their computer that they are unfamiliar with. It'd be far better to start with a problem the child already understands very well, perhaps how to play Paper, Scissors Stone, and then write an app that'll do that for them. They might come up with something a bit more exciting, but something simple to understand. Just to write that app, they'll have to learn to write loops and branches, create variables, maybe a couple of functions, handle different data types and probably do some exception handling. They don't need a bunch of complex math to deal with as well. This is just a link to a bunch more links, but it's a good place to start. http://wiki.python.org/moin/BeginnersGuide/NonProgrammers There's also a number of books out there that are aimed at teaching young people Python. I don't know what you can get online legally, but there's a few books to look at that are reasonably ok, though you may have to buy them as a hard copy. If this kid has an adult to help them, or they're just really advanced for their age, then Learning Python, Mark Lutz, O'Reilly Media, is a really good book to use, the best in my humble opinion, but it's about one thousand, five hundred pages and doesn't treat the subject lightly. You'll probably want this at some point anyway. You can check out Safari Books, they might be worth a look. I think books are still the best tools for learning programming. Seems strange, but seems true. http://www.safaribooksonline.com/Corporate/Index/index.php I've tried to offer a few useful pointers ~ if you have any more questions, don't hesitate :)
Maybe, maybe not. Definetly start it though, and then when you are older you will be able to understand much more. When I was 11 I started learnning HTML and Java, and I couldn't even understand variables. But it all came together and it help alot. Do it!
If this kid's got an adult who's going to really get stuck in and help them learn Python, I'd be willing to look at making some kind of proper commitment to do what I can to assist them over the next few months, while they find their feet ~ though I do have other commitments. I don't mind chatting to the kid in here, but I don't really want to be making friends with youngsters online. I'd have to insist on there being an adult in the loop. You can always get help in here of course, but it's sometimes nice to have help from the same guy over time so they know where you're at. As I say, I do have other things on, so I could only do so much, but I'd be interested in something like that.
I should probably point out that I've only been learning Python myself for a couple of years so I'm not qualified to teach in any way. I just don't mind helping someone learn.
This'd be worth checking out, it's free as well. http://www.py4inf.com/book.php
For an 11 year old, I'd strongly recommend the book Invent Your Own Games with Python by Al Sweigert. It teaches Python 3 purely through games, and explains some math as it goes. I'm a lot older than 11, but I really enjoyed reading the book. It's here: http://inventwithpython.com/
I say go for it. I'm not much older.