Blockchain technology has been one of the most important innovations in technology in the last decade. Cryptocurrencies and NFTs are well-known examples of this technology. Particularly, cryptocurrencies have been widely accepted all around the world and according to Deloitte’s survey in 2021, 76% of participants, consisting of executives and practitioners, expect cryptocurrencies to be a strong alternative to conventional fiat money. As a result of this surge of interest, the market cap has exceeded 2 billion dollars recently.
Although everyone is talking about this new technology, very few people truly understand the underlying mechanism, and children and teens are barely informed about it. Since the technology behind the blockchain has never been done before, our aim is to explain this new technology.
Blockchain technology isn’t just a more efficient way to settle securities. It will fundamentally change market structures, and maybe even the architecture of the Internet itself.
Abigail Johnson, Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Investments
Blockchain is “a digital database containing information (such as records of financial transactions) that can be simultaneously used and shared within a large decentralized, publicly accessible network.”
To be more precise, a Blockchain network is not dependent on a centralized authority such as banks in the modern financial system. A decentralized finance system removes the control of authorities they have on money and financial services.
The third parties are not involved in a Blockchain network. The information of the transactions is shared with the whole network by several computers and all the participants of that network can access the data. Since the transactions are validated by the participants, the whole process is more democratic, transparent, and reliable. In addition to that, Blockchain technology speeds up the transaction process due to its decentralized network that excludes third parties.
The whole information in the Blockchain network is encoded by the cryptography which secures the data. The transaction data is saved in the system permanently and if someone tries to make any change, all other participants can track it instantly due to the peer-to-peer network structure.
Blockchain technology is one of the most impactful developments in today's world. It is thought that it may radically change modern financial systems soon. To increase their financial and tech literacy, it is beneficial for children to learn blockchain technology that is used in many different fields such as logistics, real estate, health, and travel, in addition to finance.
First, they need to understand the basics. The abstract concepts can be hard to comprehend for children without simplifying them to something in real life. Using analogies is always a powerful way to achieve that. Educational videos can be helpful to make complex subjects more understandable for kids by using storytelling method.
The name blockchain came from the blocks that hold the set of information together. Every block has its own capacity and when one fills, it connects to the previous blocks. In this way, a chain of data emerged.
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, run on a blockchain network and they are generated by the mining process which is based on computer power that solves complex problems.
Thus, by learning to code with Python or C++, children can understand complex algorithms of blockchain technology and even generate their crypto-currencies through project-based learning programs.
NFT corresponds to a non-fungible token which means it is unique and can not be replaced with another thing, unlike cryptocurrencies. Every blockchain network can have its own NFT.
NFTs are digital assets that can be anything in digital forms such as drawings, music pieces, internet memes, or tweets.
Since most of the NFTs are digital art pieces, it is a good start to introduce children to the blockchain world by enabling them to create their own NFTs. For that purpose, Scratch is a suitable programming language due to its visual structure and flexible use encouraging children to reveal their creative skills.
After they created their NFTs, they can open a wallet with their parents using MetaMask and sell their digital artworks on online platforms such as OpenSea where NFTs are bought and sold.