Tynker and Micro:bit Educational Foundation Enable Next Generation of Makers to Program Micro:bit Microcontrollers
New 'micro:bit 101' and 'MicroPython 101' Courses Bring the World of Physical Computing to Kids of All Ages
Tynker, the leader in enabling kids to use code to become Makers, today announced its support for Micro:bit
Educational Foundation’s mission to enable and inspire all children to participate in the digital world. Tynker
has launched 2 new courses—micro:bit 101 and MicroPython 101–to enable students to build micro:bit projects
using Tynker Blocks and MicroPython programming languages. The combination of Tynker’s intuitive
programming tools and student-focused approach to learning with the micro:bit pocket-sized computer’s many
features will empower students to program a range of devices—ranging from motors to LEDs to speakers—to
create their own inventions.
“Micro:bit Educational Foundation and Tynker share virtually the same identical vision: to inspire every child
to create their best digital future,” said Hal Speed, Chief of Global Engagement, Micro:bit Educational
Foundation. “Tynker’s unique and innovative micro:bit implementation will help students around the world
bring to life even more creations, from wearables to multiplayer games and more---the possibilities are
Micro:bit Programming in Tynker Workshop, Tynker App and Tynker Code Editor
For beginning coders to be able to customize the features of a micro:bit device in their programs, Tynker has
released a new category of code blocks, accessible through a Web browser via Tynker Workshop as well as in
Tynker’s free iPad tablet app.
More experienced coders can program a micro:bit device in Tynker Code Editor using MicroPython, a subset of
the popular Python programming language which has been optimized to run on microcontrollers.
Students are introduced to these new coding blocks via two new courses: micro:bit 101 and MicroPython 101.
Details about these new courses are available at www.tynker.com. The courses are included as part of Tynker’s
Premium Plans and are also available for standalone purchase
To give students a head start in building applications to control connected devices, lessons in the 2 courses will
guide children to build a range of micro:bit projects, including:
Emoji Thermometer – Using the built-in thermometer sensor, program micro:bit to show a unique visual
indicator based on the temperature;
Endless Racer – Using the built-in LED grid as a game display, implement an endless racer game using the
accelerometer and buttons to tilt and move your racecar;
Morse Code Communication – Using the two-way radio, build a HAM radio communicator to send and
receive Morse code signals between 2 micro:bit devices;
Wearables for Sport and Fitness– Build a pedometer by detecting the gesture of a running step and implement
a lap timer using the built-in time functions;
Finders Keepers – Use signal strength to detect proximity and build a group Treasure Hunt game connecting
up to 32 micro:bit devices where everyone hunts for hidden treasure – another micro:bit device; and
Insanity Game – Detect if the user can thread a key through a wire maze without touching the key to the wire
and completing a circuit.
“Over 60 million kids have used Tynker to create apps, make games, write stories, and control drones and
toys,” said Krishna Vedati, co-founder and CEO of Tynker. “By extending the Tynker platform to support
micro:bit devices, we are expanding their coding skills to create applications that power smart devices in the
world of physical computing, further enabling them to become hands-on ‘makers of tomorrow’.”
Use Micro:bit in Untethered Mode
In order to fully leverage the micro:bit’s portability, Tynker has built a tiny virtual machine extension to the
micro:bit firmware so that kids’ Tynker Block programs can run on a micro:bit with no tethered connection
from a desktop computer or tablet. Once the code is flashed onto the micro:bit device, children can wear the
micro:bit as a bracelet or can pin it to their clothing or costume to show it off as they please. This enables
students to build true wearable computing projects that can run autonomously on the micro:bit without
requiring a computer or tablet to run any other code.
Empowering a New Generation of Inventors
With the addition of micro:bit to Tynker’s already growing collection of connected toys and extension libraries,
students can now further unleash their imaginations to invent cool physical gadgets. Examples include:
Build a micro:bit joystick to play Minecraft
Create a micro:bit controller to fly a drone
Design a musical instrument with fruits and vegetables
Program Alexa to water the plants with a micro:bit moisture sensor
What will they invent next?
Tynker empowers kids of all ages to become Makers by enabling them to develop coding skills to design,
develop, and power animations, games, toys, smart devices and more. The company’s award-winning platform
helps to engage students at home, at school, and on the go, so they develop the critical thinking, reasoning and
programming skills that turn them into the Makers of today and tomorrow. Tynker’s highly successful STEM
teaching platform has been used by one in three U.S. K-8 schools, 90,000 schools globally and over 60 million
kids across 150 countries. Tynker’s partners include some of the world’s most respected brands including
Apple, Google, Microsoft, Mattel, PBS, Lego and more. Tynker is accessible from any computer with an
Internet browser, as well as via the Tynker and Tynker Junior mobile apps, and offers both a free and paid
subscription option. For more information, visit www.tynker.com.
About Micro:bit Educational Foundation
The Micro:bit Educational Foundation is a not-for-profit organization with the vision of inspiring every child to
create their best digital future. Originally developed by the BBC, the micro:bit is a pocket-sized computer that
makes learning coding easy and fun while enabling students to express their creativity. The micro:bit is
available in over 60 countries with a large community of organizations providing teaching resources, software
editors and hardware accessories. For more information, visit www.microbit.org.