I try to not get into endorsing this thing or that on this blog, but there is something generating interest this week that I think is pretty cool, and it's called the Hour of Code.  The idea is to get students (or really anyone that wants to know more about programming IMO) to give it a whirl with a set of well documented instructions.  Check it out if you get a chance at http://csedweek.org/ and encourage your kids and friends to give it a shot.  Two thumbs up from Steve (I'm sure there's a badge somewhere for that).