With Tynker’s Holiday Code Jam in full swing, we wanted to continue to introduce you to some of the winners of this year’s Summer Code Jam! Read on, and then check out more about the Holiday Code Jam!
We’re always particularly delighted to see the work of international students, since coding skills have become necessary for students around the world. That’s why we’re excited to introduce our newest Featured Maker, 4th-grader Aylin, who comes to us all the way from Qatar!
When she’s not knocking our socks off with her coding skills, Aylin loves to sing and dance. Currently, she’s learning Western vocals and hip hop dancing! Still, Aylin’s ultimate goal is to become a software engineer and the coding skills she’s learning through Tynker should be the first step in getting her there!
How did you get introduced to Tynker and how long have you been coding?
I got introduced to Tynker in March. When I couldn’t go to school, my school gave me some activities to do. I had online classes so it was a little bit difficult to do until June. I wasn’t introduced to any other coding programs before.
How did you learn how to use Tynker when you were first starting out? What are your favorite Tynker courses or tutorials?
I started out doing the tutorials and the puzzles, like Barbie and Candy Quest. The Barbie one was my favorite because there are so many occupations that we can do!
What is your favorite project you’ve made so far? What do you like about it?
I love the project where you can control a car using the mouse pointer.
How do you get inspiration for your projects?
It’s really fun to look at the Tynker community. Their projects are really cool. I also get inspired by their projects and I make new projects.
Why do you like to code?
I love to code a lot because I can build anything I can imagine, it’s really nice! You can create things that aren’t even in the world, you can create a fantasy! You can create dragons and things that are not in the real world. I like to try almost anything.
What is your favorite way to use code? Do you have a favorite code block?
I like to make games and things, I like to make stories.
What do you do with a project when you’re done with it? Do you debug it? Show it to someone? Publish it?
I just check if there are any mistakes and I fix it and when everything’s done I just publish it.
How long did it take them to complete the project?
It took me 2-3 hours because I really wanted to make it the best project. If I made the best project other kids could see it and get inspired. I took my time. I actually started out making it very fast but then I thought that it’s okay to make it slowly. Otherwise I’d make mistakes and if there were too many mistakes, I wouldn’t win.
How did you feel when it was over – how excited were you, did you share it with friends or family?
I was superduper happy! I found that I won via the live announcement and I was really happy. I thought I didn’t win because my project wasn’t shown but when they announced my name I became really happy.
Did you have any interesting challenges that you had to figure out?
It was hard figuring out how to move the ball into the right position. The ball wasn’t moving in some places, so I had to fix it. That’s why it took me 1 or 2 hours.
What are you planning to make next?
I would like to make a project that shows the sun rising in the day and the moon rising in the night.
What’s the best thing about Tynker?
The best thing about Tynker is that it is really easy! Block coding is the easiest part, it’s really fun and awesome. I can even make my dreams come true! I can do it in the form of an animation.
How do you think learning to code has prepared you for the future?
Actually I think that coding is really nice. I can create so many apps and games using code. I can make things come true in the future.
Do you think other kids should try coding? Why’s that? Others should also try it because it’s really fun and you can make anything you want. I think anybody would like it. We can draw our own characters and create animations. It’s really fun!
What advice would you give to kids starting out with Tynker?
Everybody should try doing the basics and then go to difficult activities. They should try block coding first, then they can go to other types of code like Python, etc, etc.
Bonus: What’s a fun fact about you?
I like to build things, it’s just really fun. I want to make nice things using code, I want to make so many projects that are really cool and awesome. I want everybody to like my projects.
We also spoke with Aylin’s mother, Anila, to get her take on Aylin learning to code! “I first heard about loops and coding only when I reached 11th grade, but I’m so happy she heard about coding in 4th grade,” Anila told us. “I’m really grateful to Tynker for making a form which such small kids can understand. Providing an interactive platform makes it very interesting because you have all their favorite characters so they get more interested in coding.”
Anila told us that having Tynker has been particularly beneficial this year. “Right now we are totally stuck at home, so she always wants to do something,” Anila said, referring to the ongoing pandemic. “This gave her a way to be creative in this situation. so that is a big thing, and there’s a community so she’s able to see other kids’ projects. She gets to know where she stands, gets to compare with others, and she gets inspiration also from others. So that is a good thing I think.”
We want to thank Aylin and her mother for taking the time to speak with us. Happy coding!