The Best of the 2019 Wild Minecraft Code-a-Thon
We hope everyone had a great time with this year’s Wild Minecraft Code-a-Thon, an opportunity for kids to learn about biodiversity while getting creative with code! Kids explored the diverse species on our planet through interactive projects, quizzes, and Minecraft mods and mobs. Over 10k projects were submitted and 80 winners won prizes like gift cards for the Minecraft shop! We loved seeing all the unique projects that featured earth’s habitats, like oceans, deserts, mountains, and more. Now that the Code-a-Thon has ended, we’d like to highlight some of our favorite winning projects! Read on to learn more!
What Kids Made
Week 1: Grasslands Projects
The grasslands habitat includes places like the Great Plains in North America and the African savannah. These places are home to animals like the American buffalo and the elephant! They are covered in grasses, which can feed grazing animals like zebra, bison, and antelope, which in turn provide food for other animals like lions and cheetahs. User Roblox_player made an amazing Minecraft mod, called ‘Grassland gen mod’, with a variety of animals, and Pug 2.0’s ‘Elephant’ is an iconic grasslands animal!
Week 2: Forests Projects
Did you know that forests support 80% of earth’s on-land biodiversity? Forest animals include chimpanzees, pandas, owls, snakes, and many more, depending on the type of forest. In this category, winning projects included ‘Gold Rabbit’ by Flat Care, which has beautiful stripes! Another project was ‘Week 2: Forest Quiz Pikachu’ by Thoughtless Planet, where you can test your knowledge about forest animals!
Week 3: Oceans Projects
Many species live in the ocean habitat, from the loggerhead shark to the green turtle! The ocean’s creatures live all around the world, including the polar regions and coral reefs. We loved ‘Design a Reef’ by jooalan, a Minecraft mod where you can explore underwater! A shark mob by alex-fishsticks also placed qualified as a winning project. Check out those scary-looking teeth!
Week 4: Deserts Projects
Deserts are areas in the world where more water evaporates than gets replaced by rain or other precipitation, making them usually extremely hot during the day and often cold at night. The species that live in these areas, like the meerkat and cactus, have adapted to these harsh conditions. In this category, one of the winners is pupcraft, who made a super cool scorpion mob! And we can’t forget about the plants in the desert–experiencedwhistle653’s ‘Week 4: Create a Cactus 2’ is a great cactus animation!
Week 5: Mountains Projects
Like other habitats, mountains are regions where plant and animal species have evolved to survive those specific conditions. Snow leopards, mountain gorillas, and monarch butterflies all live in mountains! Check out projects like soyboygamerrr’s ‘Week 5: Generate a Mountain Range,’ a stellar Minecraft mod, or a beautiful lynx mob by awesomemintysauce!
Week 6: Freshwaters Projects
Freshwaters make up only about 3% of the world’s water! This habitat is home to species like the brook trout, axolotl, and river dolphins. Lakes, creeks, rivers, and even cave systems are all examples of freshwater sources! Two classic freshwater animals are the beaver and the crocodile, both represented by our winners! Try out Infinite Frame’s beaver mob or grasash’s crocodile mob.
Week 7: Wetlands Projects
Wetland habitats include marshes and swamps. They are some of the most productive places on planet earth and support species like the Sumatran tiger, Eastern indigo snake, wood stork, and Florida panther! We loved these two cute Minecraft mobs– ‘Duck‘ by dragon_blast and ‘Snapping Turtle’ by The Exterior Cake!
Week 8: Polar Regions Projects
A variety of species live in the polar regions, including the arctic fox, polar bear, pacific salmon, and Galápogos penguin. If you want to test out your knowledge of this habitat, try ‘Week 8: Polar Quiz’ by Astonishing Escapade, a fun quiz project! You can also check out a truly cool animal with djawesomex09’s ‘Husk Ox’ mob!
Kids and Parents Loved the Code-a-Thon!
We had the chance to hear from a few parents about what they and their kids thought about the Wild Minecraft Code-a-Thon! Here’s what they had to say:
Karl, dad of E-man, who made ‘Week 1: Create a Grassland’:
“I’m really pleased with the skills and coding concepts he has been learning through the Tynker curriculum. When the email came out about the Wild Minecraft Code-a-Thon, I showed it to him and he logged on right then and started working on the challenges. He was absolutely ecstatic about [being selected as a winner] and we consider it to be a great accomplishment and honor for him.”
Thomas, dad of gaming with b boy, who made ‘squrle’:
“I signed up for Tynker because I thought, if [my kids] want to spend a bunch of time on video games, I’d rather them spend that time learning how to create them, because that gives them a skill set. He loved the experience, and so did I. He was so proud of himself as learned new programming skills. He is obsessed with Tynker and dreams of creating his own game. He cried when he saw he won. I’ve never seen him so happy and so proud of himself. It’s amazing to see him so excited about learning, and I wish there were more things like Tynker out there. I asked him what he had to say, and he said this: ‘I can’t believe I won. This is the coolest thing that happened to me this summer!’”
From Jolene, mom of 4 winners, ‘mrprawnpaste’, ‘kkcrunch’, ‘extroern’, and ‘zernzest’!
“My 4 children took part in this summer’s Code-a-Thon. This 8-week challenge really drove them to learn new coding skills, as they were all trying to outdo each other, too. It was a wonderful learning opportunity and the prize (Minecraft gift certificate) this year was so appealing to my youngsters. I was also delighted to note that the prize is accessible to us living in Malaysia, as shipping is covered by the gift certificate. Thank you, Tynker! We look forward to the next Code-a-Thon!”
Thank you to all of the kids and parents who participated in this year’s Wild Minecraft Code-a-Thon! We were so excited to see everyone’s creativity as they brought biodiversity to life with code. We hope you’ll join us next year in our annual Code-a-Thon!
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