You could spend 200 hours learning how to write in a particular language, but you might still feel like you haven’t developed anything that has any meaning. Sometimes we feel overwhelmed when we are faced with building a sample project, either for your course or because we want to do it. So, we want to talk about the best beginner coding projects that you can use for practice.
The three best options for beginners to practice their coding are using sample projects like calculators, reservation systems, email slicers, and more. The second option is to contribute to open-source projects. Find one that you are comfortable with. Finally, the best way to practice is to solve real-world problems for companies using websites like geeks for geeks.
We plan on structuring this article to tell you about free sample projects that software developers can use to practice or sharpen their skills. We will then discuss a few web development projects before moving on to open source, and finally, platforms that are designed specifically for practicing real-world problems. So, let’s jump into the article.
5 of the Best Projects for Beginner Software Developers to Practice Coding
In this section, we are focusing more on software development rather than web development. It is essential to note that we have listed a game in the section because we understand that some of you are aspiring game developers, and a game is just software.
For most of the things that we listed, we have also chosen which language is best for the program but don’t be afraid to experiment with the language you are familiar with. Also, remember that programming is all about trial and error, constantly learning through your mistakes, and patience. So, don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
So, here are our best projects for beginner software developers to practice their coding on.
One of the first things you should do as a program is learning how to build simple programs like simple calculators. Creating a simple calculator is for Absolute Beginners. However, if you are up for a challenge, you can make the calculator behind it a graphical user interface.
Building a calculator should be done using an object-orientated programming language such as C-Sharp, Python, or Java. Building this sample project should teach you how to use operators and variables to determine the outcome depending on the user’s input. These are key concepts in software development.
Suppose you are a complete beginner programmer and you haven’t selected what system and language you want to use. In that case, I highly recommend trying to build this project using C-Sharp in Visual Studio. You can find the download for Visual Studio here.
Next, you could think about building an email Slicer. This is a simple tool that is used to make tedious work more efficient. An email slicer will separate the username from an email address so that you are left with the username plus a domain name.
Developing an email slicer is best done with Python. However, you can use other object-orientated programming languages. You might just have difficulty getting everything going, so it is best to try this out with Python. You will still be learning the fundamentals of slicing.
Also, if you are unfamiliar with Python, we have written a recent article where we discuss, in-depth, how to learn Python. If you want the best headstart with the language, that article is an essential read for you.
Practicing your skills by building a shuffle the deck program using python will teach you the basics of a few fundamental Python aspects. However, it must be said that you can definitely build this in other OOP languages if you wish.
After building a program to shuffle a deck of cards, you should better understand your Python modules, random modules, functions, and loops. The best thing about using this project to practice is for such a basic program, you learn quite a lot. Again, this is for complete beginners.
All you have to do is create the deck of cards after importing Python modules. When you make the deck, you will create a number range and have the four different cards, hearts, diamonds, spades, and clubs. When the user chooses a specific input, you can select how many cards you want to draw. The cards will all be random, and the output that the user sees will be those random cards.
Brick Breaker Game Using Java
The brick breaker game was one of the first games to ever launch on modern cell phones. I can still remember their popularity. However, they are simple programs that require only a little programming knowledge. I don’t recommend trying this if you are a complete beginner because I don’t want you to get overwhelmed or discouraged.
The brick breaker game is all about objects and how they interact with each other. Therefore, any OOP language (object-orientated programming language) will be good enough to build this program. So, whatever you are familiar with is what you should use. However, we have decided to go with Java.
In the link below, you can find the source code for this game written in Java. The code will be downloaded from GitHub. Look, if you are an aspiring game developer and you have never developed a game, this should be your introduction for you to see whether or not you enjoy it.
For a fun little fact; Did you know that games are developed using multiple languages but mainly C++ as they are theoretically object-orientated programs.
Currency Converters are widely used online and in any business that deals with foreign transactions. Knowing how to build one is the first step you should take if you plan on being a software developer for the financial industry.
If you click on the link that we have provided for the currency converter tutorial, don’t be intimidated by the amount of code on the screen. Most of that code is repetitively just creating the different currencies. Other than that, developing the currency converter is not that difficult.
You are looking for sample projects to build because you want to practice. The great thing about learning how to create a currency converter is the amount you can expand on it. For example, once you have built the program in the tutorial, you can start figuring out how to use accurate world currency rates, which is a genuinely excellent step to becoming a software developer for financial institutions.
Hint: Find a way to extract real-time data from the web and use it in your program.
Best Web Development Projects for Beginners to Practice
Now it is time to talk to the web developers who are reading this article. Hopefully, you haven’t felt left out up until this point. It is tricky to come up with projects for a web developer, so I have created a list of things that you can do to work on your skills. Remember, we are assuming you are a beginner, which means you have at least some knowledge.
In this section, you will come close to building an entire website. We will not tell you what code to write, but we will try and set you off in the right direction. You can use your preferred web development tools to build the site.
Create a Single Landing Page
The first step you want to take is to create a landing page or a home page. If you ever feel like you need to practice your code, you can create many landing pages as you want. The trick is to use different styles and find other ways of practicing things that you might not be familiar with.
Your landing page can be complex with multiple windows, different styles options, and much more, or it could be simple with just an image and some text. However, doing that isn’t going to help you progress in your web development journey. It would be best if you challenged yourself.
Create a responsive page
The next step is relatively simple. When you think about it, you want to make your landing page that you have already created responsive. Now, because you are trying to sharpen your skills, I recommend always starting a new project to become familiar with creating the first page.
A responsive website means that your page adapts to the device that it is being viewed on. So, if someone views your web page on a computer, it will display normally, but if they are using a phone, it will scale to that display size without feeling clunky. The same can be said if it is viewed on a tablet.
Create a multi-page Responsive site
Your next step is to create a multi-page site with responsiveness. Now, a complete beginner might be thinking, “ok, I will just create multiple pages,” but that’s not exactly how it works. You want to create a menu or, better yet, a few menus from your landing page.
Once you have created multiple pages, you want to link them to each menu on your landing page. For example, one menu could say products with three options. Each of those three options should take the user to the next window according to what the option says.
Finally, don’t forget to make the page responsive, which applies to all of the pages and menus.
Add Functionality to your Site
Your final step is to add functionality to your website. This functionality could be simple, or it could be complex. You should create a contact form that pops up as soon as a user lands on a specific page, such as the contact us page.
Airline Reservation System
If you are a beginner that wants a more challenging hurdle, you could try developing an airline reservation system. This is an online system and a sample project to teach you the skills necessary to become a web developer for non-tech companies.
Think about how many people book tickets every day to use an airline to go on vacation, business trips, or just back home. However, building the airline reservation system will benefit you far beyond the reservation system itself. Let’s take a look.
Web development isn’t just about fancy Silicon Valley Style tech environments, no. A lot of the time, you might be employed to build an online ordering system for a restaurant. You could create an online School attendance system.
Once you understand that these are the type of things web developers do, you will be grateful once you have worked on it. You can find the source code for the airline reservation system below. I highly recommend checking it out. Also, it is in Java.
Best Places to Find Open Source Projects For Beginners to Practice
Most tutorials and classes you take when learning software development will have sample projects for you. However, there are only a certain number of times that you can practice those, and the same applies to the projects we listed in this article. There is another way for you to find projects that you can work on, open-source projects.
Open source projects are there for anyone who wishes to contribute to the project. First, be sure to read the licenses and make sure you know what you can and cannot do with the software. What we will say is, working on open-Source software is one of the best ways for you to practice, and here is why:
- Solve real-world problems.
- Gain exposure to different languages.
- See how senior developers tackle issues.
- Get noticed if you do something great.
So, let’s take a look at my three favorite websites where you can find open-source projects that you can work on to work on your skills through real-world situations.
Look, I’m not supposed to make definite statements or assumptions, but I don’t think a software developer alive does not know about GitHub. The website is not some shady place where people post shady projects online, hoping to get people to do free work.
On Github, you can find some of the most significant Open Source Projects available today. The work that you do on these projects won’t go unnoticed, and if you manage to solve a problem on GitHub for a big open-source project, you might get noticed by some big players in the industry. See, you get to sharpen your skills while getting some exposure. For a beginner, that is a win-win.
Finding a good Open Source Project that suits you can be one of the biggest challenges when trying to practice your code while also contributing to open-source projects. That is where Code Triage comes in. They currently have almost 6,500 open-source projects with over 60,000 developers working on them.
Code Triage does not only give you the open-source projects to work on; it also makes you part of a community of developers ranging from beginners to the most advanced, and that alone is essential to any aspiring programmer.
Oh, and the number of options available means you will most definitely find a project that is your preferred coding ecosystem.
Open Source Friday is different from most other open-source platforms, but first, you are going to need to sign up for a free account. You will do so by signing up with your GitHub account. Open Source Friday tries to put you in touch with a project that means something to you, which initially increases the amount of passion you will have when contributing. Passion is a critical aspect of software development.
Once you have signed up, Open Source Friday teaches you how to contribute to open-source projects, which is what separates it from most other platforms. I understand that as a beginner, you might not be familiar with simple things like how to contribute or when to contribute. That is why having it explained to you is an excellent feature.
Best Places to Practice Coding for Beginners
We can keep pointing you in the direction of sample projects, and they are great. Trust me; most people do them. However, in my experience, solving real-world problems from existing companies is the best way to practice.
Then you also have problems that senior programmers develop to challenge others. From beginners to software engineers, these little challenges make for the best practice because they are explicitly targeted at what programmers struggle with at each level in their careers.
So, allow us to point you in the direction of three of the best websites that you can use to practice your development skills in the best way possible. I implore you to try all of these websites and use them frequently because even the most senior developers love doing the challenges these websites create.
So, you want to practice writing code, and you want to do so by building programs? That is great, but in my experience, this section where we speak about geeks for geeks is probably the best coding practice that you can get. Hear me out for just a minute.
Once you land on the geeks for geeks home page, you will find a section called “practice coding,” and you will click on it. Once you have done that, you will land on another page where you will see a list of problems by companies such as Microsoft, Google Adobe, and Samsung.
You can also filter through these problems selecting the difficulty, whether or not you want to solve functional issues of entire issues, and much more. Look, you will be dealing with real-world problems that you will run into as a software developer, giving you a significant boost in your progress.
Right, there is even more to the site. No matter where you are on the website, you will always see something called “problem of the day” in the top left-hand corner. When you click on that, it will take you to the day’s problem, where there will be a timer. You have to solve that problem in time. It also shows you how many people were successful at doing so and this is also one of the best ways of practicing.
We love to give something back to our readers, and in the section, you will find a tip that not many people understand or at least utilize when advising beginner programmers. There is a website called stack overflow. You seriously need to get over there if you are serious about programming.
When you land on the site, it might not look like it offers any practice material, but you want to look for a section called “questions.” This section is where people ask questions, and you can read answers from experienced developers, but you want to learn from that and practice doing what the experienced developers say.
Here is where it gets interesting; when you see a problem, you can quickly go off and try and find the answer yourself. Again, this is dealing with real-world issues, and that is the best way of practicing your coding skills and your programming skills.
We don’t give Codewars enough recognition because they are genuinely a revolutionary platform. Now to get into Codewars, you will need to prove that you have some understanding of a language, so they will ask you to solve a few problems related to the language you choose. This already is an excellent way to practice because you will need to find a way to solve those problems if you want to get into Codewars
Once you get into Codewars, they have programs developed specifically for the language of your choice where you can sharpen your skills. And, they even make it easy for you to learn different languages and systems. That is perfect for expanding your library of skills.
I have written a very useful article about the best FREE sites to learn to code.
It would be best if you asked yourself a few questions while practicing. How hard do you want to challenge yourself? What are your weaknesses? What do you need to do to expand your coding knowledge? I know that this article steered off-topic slightly, but let me explain why.
You have so much more to gain from working with other beginner or senior developers. You also gain more experience by tackling issues that experienced developers create. That, in my opinion, is the best way of practicing.