How Yoda’s wisdom can be applied to coding

You may know Yoda as a small, frog-like, 900-and-something-year-old creature who crops up every now and then to say something funny but, to many across the galaxy, he’s so much more than that.

He may be a fictional character but he’s arguably one of the best teachers in the universe. Let’s take a look at some of Yoda’s most famous teachings and how his wisdom can be applied to coding:

“You must unlearn what you have learned”

When we learn how to do something, the process becomes second nature. There’s no need to try different methods because we know this one works. Baking a cake, for example. If you use a recipe and you’re happy with the result, why try another?

In The Empire Strikes Back, Yoda tells Luke Skywalker he must unlearn what he has learned. In doing so, he’s trying to get him to think outside the box. The same can be applied to coding. Sometimes you need to forget what you know in order to learn something new and progress. It’s all about perspective!

“Do. Or do not. There is no try!”

In the same scene, as Luke tries to lift the X-Wing fighter out of the swamp, Yoda tells him to either decide to do it or give up entirely. By saying he will “try” Luke already has the preconception that he will fail, which is precisely his problem.

In coding, there may be times when the task at hand seems impossible, but there’s always a way. By tackling the problem with a positive attitude and the belief that you can fix it, you are more likely to achieve your goals.

“The greatest teacher, failure is”

Being successful is great, but as Yoda said, failure really is the best teacher. For children learning how to code, failure is an opportunity to learn acceptance, resilience and problem-solving skills.

It forces us to rethink our decisions and actions and discover better ways to get the results we want.

“Patience you must have, my young padawan”

You can’t learn how to code over night. It involves a whole lot of trial and error and will be sure to test your child’s patience.

As younglings learn, they will start to understand how every action they take contributes to the end result. Not only does coding require patience, but it also teaches it.

“If no mistake you have made, yet losing you are, a different game you should play”

In this quote, Yoda teaches us to focus on the bigger picture. For example, you’ve built a video game but it doesn’t work the way you had planned. You go digging and find that you’ve done everything by the book. What now?

In cases like this, you may need to change your strategy…and that’s okay!

What lessons have you learnt from Yoda? Follow us on social media to join the conversation.