Parents' Guide to


By Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Cool, accessible coding lessons come with a hefty price tag.

CodeHS Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this website.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 10 parent reviews

age 2+

Boring for beginners, Annoying for experts.

I have used the AP CSP curriculum with my students and I can confidently say that this is the worst program if you're trying to get kids interested in the field. There is an overwhelming amount of repetitive, dull exercises that treat the students like babies even thought this is intended to be used in a high-school-level AP class. It's incredibly boring for the students, since all of the lessons for the first 2 units are a flat png of a generic dog moving around a grid placing and picking up yellow circles. It also doesn't help the fact that the students know that what they're learning cannot be used outside of these extremely specific and boring examples. The extremely simple and bland setup detriments itself by making concepts like "if/else" statements harder to explain to students as it fails to provide them a scenario where it would be necessary. Unlike most compsci programs like Scratch and, everything in CodeHS is predetermined; No user input, no interaction with the visuals, and nothing that could change the original outcome of the program. How can you teach kids the use of "if" and "else" conditionals if you always know the outcome and setup of every situation before you ever hit run. Also unlike these websites, CodeHS isn't free, yet it runs terribly and tends to freeze very often. It also gives kids a direct way to get to Youtube via the otherwise pointless "Watch video on Youtube" button, which is the reason for a lot of complaints of inappropriate content. Overall this program is tedious, repetitive, boring, glitchy, and unable to properly teach basic concepts in code.

This title has:

Easy to play/use
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
1 person found this helpful.
age 18+

No support after buying their product

My son is interested in going into cybersecurity after high school and we home educate. I know nothing about the field and thought I had found a great tool in CodeHS. We purchased 2 classes that he could use as high school electives and that would help him see if this is the right field for him. But when he ran into problems and we asked for help and support, we found very little. He's so frustrated and discouraged now that he's considering looking into a whole different career path, we're back at square one. I really think he'd be great at this but that CodeHS was just a bad experience and not helpful. I hope we can find help elsewhere.
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (10 ):
Kids say (5 ):

CODEHS offers 10 sections with multiple programming lessons, puzzles, practices, and challenges to help kids learn to write and use code. The informational videos are each less than five minutes but provide thorough instruction. Because each section is broken down into individual lessons, students can learn at their own pace and track their progress on the site, helping them set and complete educational goals. Using Karel the dog as a way to teach commands makes things accessible for beginners; you'll move him around and set down a bunch of tennis balls on a grid using code. Kids'll also have fun with the first results of their coding: retro games and simple art programs. The only real detriment is that parents need to purchase a hefty $75-a-month premium subscription for kids to access one of the site's coolest features, personalized help from its on-hand Stanford-educated tutors.

Website Details

  • Subjects: Language & Reading : following directions, reading comprehension, Math : functions, sequences
  • Skills: Thinking & Reasoning : applying information, strategy, Tech Skills : digital creation, using and applying technology
  • Genre: Educational
  • Topics: STEM
  • Pricing structure: Free to try, Paid (Free to try. Plans vary by course. Details at
  • Last updated: April 4, 2019

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