Learn about Antimatter from Andy
Andy is a 4th grader in Minnesota. He’s made some really advanced projects in Tynker and wants to be a programmer when he grows up. He loves coding and building electrical stuff, like a model robotic arm that he recently built.
Andy’s Introduction to Coding
Andy learned about coding from his grandfather Eric, an electrical engineer. The first game they made together was using an industrial program called LabVIEW that Eric uses at work for testing. In the game, there are two buttons. When you click one button, the score goes up and when you click the other one, the score goes down. This means that two people can battle to see how fast they can click.
According to Eric, they always felt that Andy had an aptitude for technology because of his curiosity and his interest in the tools Eric used at work: “Before he was actually programming it, he was just playing with [LabVIEW]. It’s pretty much been most of his life.”
Teaching about Antimatter
Andy’s school has a big assignment called “Genius Hour” where each student creates an in-depth report on a topic that interests them: “You take any topic and make a presentation about it, like solar panels or ocean life, and then you present it in class.”
For his project, Andy chose the topic of antimatter, an advanced physics topic. He learned about antimatter from Google Answers, CERN, and his grandfather. To present his research and teach others, he programmed a Tynker project. The project includes a lesson, a pop quiz, an antimatter simulation, movies, and games and involved an immense amount of code–over 1,000 lines! Andy says this is one of his favorite games he’s built.
Math Art in Tynker
Andy’s grandmother Marjorie says Andy spends a lot of time coding: “Sometimes we have to take him away from it so he can do Math.” But Andy’s using math to make projects in Tynker as well, like his “3D Shape” program, which he says he created through experimentation.
“I was just experimenting with making shapes, and then I thought, ‘Woah, this looks like a 3D shape.’ I was just looking at patterns and then all of a sudden, this looks like a cube. So then I tried to make a bigger cube and a bigger cube until I eventually came up with that.”
Andy plans to continue using Tynker to create games and projects because he says it’s “one of the most powerful block-based languages.” He wants to learn how to use Tynker’s network capabilities to connect to the Internet in his projects and be able to fetch data through that. Ultimately, he says this would allow him to build large, powerful programs that are similar to the App store.
He’d like for Tynker to work on adding a feature that would allow multiple people to work on the same program at once, like Google Docs. This would allow for more collaboration between users and would let people build much more difficult and advanced projects by working in groups.
Your Child Can Code Too!
Andy learned about programming from his grandfather Eric, but not all of us are lucky enough to be raised by a programmer. All kids can learn to program and build incredible projects. We can’t wait to see what your child will make.