Future Astronaut James Shoots For the Stars!
Meet James, a 4th grader from California who loves coding, space, and collaborating with his fellow young programmers! He’s ten years old and loves to play sports like soccer and basketball – in fact, he plays on a soccer team!
When he’s not in school or on the field, James busy preparing to be an astronaut. He loves that “there are so many things you can learn about space, and there are always new things that you can learn!”
What’s your favorite subject in school? I like science! It’s really fun to do experiments.
How did you feel when you found out your project had been featured? I felt really excited!
How did you get introduced to Tynker? We have a rotation that we do every Tuesday at school and coding is one of the subjects. Coding is something we do at school, but sometimes I play at home.
How long have you been coding? Not very long, a year or less.
How did you learn how to use Tynker when you were first starting out? I learned from my friends!
How do you get inspiration for your projects? I normally get inspiration for my projects from things I like to do. I like to study about space so that’s why I created that project.
How do you use your creativity when you code? I use my creativity by doing drawings and weird things!
Why do you like to code? I think it’s really fun, and there are so many different things you can make.
What is your favorite project you’ve made so far? I really liked making Space Mania.
Is there anything you’re planning to make next or currently working on? Right now I’m working on Space Lesson, where you select the planet and it’ll give you a short quiz!
What do you do with a project when you’re done with it? Sometimes I publish them, sometimes I keep them and don’t publish them. I show them to my friends and family.
What’s your favorite feature in Tynker? I like the views and likes section.
Do you ever Tynker with your friends? Yeah, I normally do that after school.
Do you look at the Tynker community projects? Yes, they’re all different!
How do you think learning coding now might help you in the future? I think it could help me design stuff.
Do you think other kids should try coding? I think it’s really fun, and it’s an experience everyone should try.
What advice would you give for kids starting out with Tynker? Try out what they know already, and then just experiment!
James’s dad Mike says that he and James’s mother love Tynker because “it gives him an opportunity to really use his brain. He has to be nice and calm and sit there on his iPad and really focus on the task at hand.”
We were thrilled to hear about how James’s friends code together! Mike told us a bit about it, saying, “What’s really cool is that a lot of his friends at school enjoy it. They’ll sit around a little picnic table outside of their class and get together and start coding!” He noted that they motivate each other, and told us, “It’s neat – when they achieve a certain level with their coding effort on Tynker, they’ll show that accomplishment to their friends.”
James agreed with his dad when he said, “The friends are very supportive of each other in their efforts to create something, so he gets a significant amount of support from his friends and that’s what motivates him.”
It sounds like James has a lot of people rooting for him and his coding skills! When asked how he supports James in his coding endeavors, he told us, “He’s really taken it on his own and he’s running with it! We allow him time on it on a consistent basis, on a daily basis. We’re always checking in with him as to his progress and throwing in our two cents whenever he asks for it, but he gets a lot of support from family and friends.”
What skills does learning to code build? James believes that the most prominent one is problem-solving! According to Mike, “Getting into the problem and really thinking it through to a conclusion – whether they are successful or they need to try something different to achieve whatever results they’re trying to get.”
Thanks for speaking with us, James and Mike! We can’t wait to see where coding takes you, James – hopefully to outer space!