From Competitors to Collaborators: Meet Co-Creators Sid and Darsh!
Meet Sid and Darsh, a dynamic duo who first competed with code and now collaborate! In Sid’s words, “Collaboration’s this year – last year was competition!” The 12-year-old friends – who attend 6th grade in Texas – have been in school together for two years.
They both code in their free time, but that’s where their extracurricular similarities end – Darsh likes to play basketball and chess, while Sid enjoys reading, LEGOs, and studying. Both budding programmers have great goals for the future! Darsh wants to be a programmer or a computer engineer, and Sid wants to start a business or be a business leader.
The way Sid tells it, when they received the notification that their project had been featured, “we actually thought we were going to be famous!” Darsh added, “We were in school so we couldn’t scream or else we’d get in trouble, but in our minds we were like, ‘Wow, oh my gosh!’ We show more interest in coding than we did before. Since now it’s featured it’s even more interesting!”
How Did They Start Working Together?
Darsh, who was introduced to Tynker in 5th grade during Hour of Code, has now been coding for one year. “For me,” Sid said, “my 3rd grade teacher was technology-savvy, so she was very interested in code so she taught our whole class. I’ve been coding for three years!”
The two started coding together this year, and now they collaborate almost every school day. “We code on the bus or sometimes at home,” Darsh said, “but we mostly work together in school so we can talk to each other while we’re coding.” The two boys even sit together and code while they eat their lunches!
In Darsh’s words, they decided to start coding together because they “both like coding a lot” – but the two haven’t always been partners. In fact, they used to be competitors! Luckily, they decided to optimize their skills by combining them.
“Last year we had this competition for coding,” Sid said, “so we decided to combine our skills this year to make the ultimate mastermind!” The way Darsh tells it, “We started this year. It was Sid’s idea on the bus, he said “How about we just make an account” and then I made the account and we both logged onto it.”
By supplementing their partnership with a hefty dose of perseverance and determination, the two have really strengthened their skills. Darsh let us in on a little secret – they haven’t always been top of their class in coding. He told us, “Last year we had a few people who were like, ‘I’m better than you!’ or ‘You can’t code that properly!’ and then this year we’re really good at coding because we didn’t give up at all.” Sid confirmed this with, “A lot of people were better but they never got featured last year!”
What Does Their Collaboration Look Like?
Darsh’s mom Renu said that by working together on Tynker projects, the boys are “learning how to collaborate with others to be more productive, which is a replica of the real work environment!” She believes that collaboration is a skill that will help them in the future.
“We’re sharing ideas. We challenge each other.” – Sid
Darsh and Sid work well together, but that doesn’t mean they don’t face challenges! They told us about a time when they had to learn to compromise. “One time we tried combining both of our ideas together and it didn’t work,” Sid said. “Darsh thought the bomb should bounce up and I thought we should drag it. We tried combining our ideas, but it didn’t work out.” So, in the face of failure, what did they do? Darsh told us, “In the end we went with Sid’s plan. I was very stubborn but then I gave in.”
They’ve discovered the secret to compromise – “Not one person wins all the time!” Darsh declared. “You need a lot of creativity to make a really good game, so we combine both of our ideas to make one good one.” Sid agreed, saying, “We’re sharing ideas. We challenge each other.”
“Dodge the Cannonballs” Check out more of Sid and Darsh’s projects here!
When it comes to getting inspiration for their projects, the two have a similar approach – check out the Tynker community! Darsh told us that he looks at the community projects “to find how I can base my games off of theirs or improve my game.” Sid said he also looks at the community, “but most of the times it comes from my head.”
“Dodge the Goblins”
Why Do They Love Tynker?
We know the two are great at what they do, but why do they love it? For Darsh, “It’s a really fun topic, and I’ve been doing it for quite a while so it’s interesting to me. You can play your own games!” Sid added his perspective, saying, “For me it involves a lot of math skills, you have to use different logic skills, and the collaboration is very fun.”
They’ve made lots of awesome projects together, but Sid’s favorite is the one that just got featured! We got the inside scoop on their next game, which is going to be “more complex than the other one. You have to destroy the goblins that are trying to destroy you, and as you destroy them you get money to buy other types of weapons and things.”
If they run into a bug, they approach it patiently and pragmatically. “We usually try fixing it by ourselves,” Darsh said, “but if we can’t fix it we work together. If that doesn’t work we go onto the tutorials page and we see if that can help us.”
Looking to the Future
How can learning to code now impact kids’ futures? Our dynamic duo had great answers to that question, discussing tech skills in a changing world. Darsh emphasized the opportunity to build upon the skills he learns with Tynker in the future. “Suppose you want to be a game coder – Tynker’s technically the base of it and you can develop your skills in Tynker to be a better coder when you get older.”
“You can develop your skills in Tynker to be a better coder when you get older.” – Darsh
Sid touched on the urgency of keeping up in a changing world, saying, “When we get to our parents’ age, it’s going to be the technology age, the digital age, where there’s more going to be use of technology. Your door might be able to locate your face, recognize it, and open it for you, so it’s best to go into software and work on all that stuff. We’ve got to get a head start, don’t we?”
Luckily, Sid and Darsh are indeed getting a great head start by coding with Tynker, and they believe other kids should, too. “You’ll get a head start in later life,” Sid said. “You never know – you could be a billionaire in your 20s!”
The two experienced programmers gave some great advice to those embarking on their coding journey. Darsh said, “I would advise beginners to go through the tutorials and courses first to get a good understanding of it, and when you think you have a good understanding, then I would start coding your own games. If you want you could even look at community.” Sid emphasized the importance of perseverance, saying, “Never give up, because there’s going to be a lot of failures”
We had a chance to speak with Sid and Darsh’s mothers, from whom we also gained some great insight. Sid’s mom, Supriya, told us she feels “very happy and excited” for Sid and his budding coding skills! “He loves to play video games,” she said, “and if he can design it, I mean, that’s just the icing on the cake.”
“He loves to play video games, and if he can design it, that’s just the icing on the cake.” – Supriya, Sid’s mom
She told us, “I was just listening to the interview and I’m like, ‘Oh my God, these kids are just awesome!’ They do so many things together and they love challenges. They love to be with each other but they encourage each other and they do well!”
For Supriya, coding improves “logical and analytical thinking, because that’s very important when they learn to code. That’s the key component of coding, they learn that a lot.” By learning to code, kids learn important skills like organization and logic.
She believes that being featured helps motivate and empower kids! “It’s encouraging that Tynker does that – featuring all the games – it encourages kids to try and come up with new ideas.”
Darsh’s mom, Renu, also had great things to say about her son’s experience coding with Tynker. “Darsh is very much interested in coding and game designing,” she said. “He developed these skills by watching tutorials in his own interest!” She’s proud of his achievements, saying, “I see that as great! I am sure he will easily pick up complicated coding in the future.”
“He is strengthening his logical sense, as programming is about connecting ideas together to make it work.” – Renu, Darsh’s mom
Darsh has already started using his skills for good! His mom shared that Darsh “attended a video designing workshop at University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) where the kids designed games for kids with autism. Darsh’s team won the first prize for the most impactful design! He was so happy that he could help kids who are under-privileged.”
Renu has seen coding benefit Darsh on an individual level as well. Since starting to code, he has “improved in his ability to stay focused on a topic for longer periods of time than before.” He’s also “strengthening his logical sense, as programming is about connecting ideas together to make it work.” She also told us that “He has developed a sense of self-confidence after knowing about his Tynker featured design – I heard him explaining very proudly to his friends how he and Sid designed the Tynker game!”
It was fantastic to speak with Darsh and Sid (and their mothers!) and hear their eloquent observations and insights into their own collaborative relationship as well as the broader world of tech. Thanks for chatting with us; we can’t wait to see what you two create next!