Tynker is Taking Coding for Kids to a Whole New Level in 2021
Tynker is more determined than ever to make our coding platform bigger and better in 2021. Thankfully, we continued to grow with our young coders this past year, and they responded in record numbers. We had over 40,000 submissions to our three Code Jams and handed out over $10,000 in prizes. And, this year we’re aiming even higher!
Going forward into the new year, we’re continuing to tailor our programming toward independent, interest-based learning. At Tynker, we empower creativity with code, but we also know that each child’s way of expressing it is different.
We’re also increasing our live online classes for coders who want more personal instruction or are looking for some tips and tricks. Beginning in January, we’ll have classes in Game Design, Minecraft Modding, Creative Coding, Python, and more.
Take a look below and see what we’ve got coding for 2021.
Start with our New & Improved Age-Based Dashboards
Your child can personalize their coding experience by selecting the appropriate course from their dashboard based not just on difficulty but on their interests too.
We usually recommend starting with one of the introductory courses before exploring other options. For more information, check out our Quick Start Guide for Parents.
Interest-Based Learning Paths
With Interest-Based Learning Paths, your child can select a programming level and course track from the Settings (gear icon) area of their dashboard. This configures the dashboard to match all their activities to their programming level and interests. Students can change these options at any time. Currently, kids can choose from 6 amazing tracks:
- Art & Music
- Minecraft Modding
- Game Design
- Minecraft Game Design
- Robotics & AR
- Advanced Coding
In addition, Tynker offers seasonal projects, community challenges, coding competitions, hundreds of puzzle levels, and great do-it-yourself projects!
Tynker’s New STEM Activities
Tynker has new STEM-related coding activities for home users that we’re excited to share with you. A STEM education is great for kids and teens because it fosters creativity, builds resilience, encourages experimentation, and exposes them to technology, an expanding field that will open them up to countless job opportunities.
Go to our YouTube page to find a fantastic new way of learning with our video tutorials. We’ve recently added video tutorials in Brick Breaker, Soundscape, and more!
We’re Amping Up our Music System!
At Tynker, we believe that music is a learning path that blends perfectly with coding — you might even say they work in perfect harmony — which is why we’re excited to be at the forefront of a new creative medium combining music and code.
This year we’ve added over 100 different types of musical instruments to our sound system. Plus, the Play Sound block now supports playing MIDI files, so you can play your favorite tunes from radio, movies, and video games in Tynker.
All-New Tynker Workshop!
This update improves the speed of our Tynker Workshop and addresses many improvements based on the feedback we’ve received from users like you. When you create a new project or launch a coding exercise, the first thing you’ll notice is an increase in speed and a sporty new look. Behind the scenes, we’ve overhauled the foundation so that we can bring you new features faster.
- Animation Tool – Do you love writing stories and drawing characters with Tynker? Well, now you can make your projects even better by creating your own animated artwork.
- The Level Editor & Platformer Blocks – The Level Editor lets you drag-and-drop game elements visually and create fun levels super fast. And, The Platformer Blocks help you code platformer actors that can move left and right.
- The Debugger Tool – You can use tools called debuggers to help you find and fix bugs while coding.
- The Expression Builder – With our newly launched Expression Builder, you can just type your expression in text to see it simultaneously being composed to blocks.
- Minecraft tools upgraded – Deploying your mods in IoS 13 and higher got a whole lot easier with our upgrade to the Mod Creator and Tynker apps.
- Upgraded UI, speed, and performance – We’ve made significant improvements to the tools and infrastructure so that Tynker Workshop and other tools load faster in your browser.
- Multilevel support – Now you can build multilevel games easily by simply adding a new level. There are also additional blocks to switch levels.
Tynker Junior Added 5 Maker Studios
The 5 studios are a creative way for pre-readers to experiment, since there is no wrong answer, and any combination of code blocks that they put together will generate a result. These themed studios have open-ended coding activities in which kids can create greeting cards, make geometric and modern art, and even design mini-games.
- Art Studio – Program art with math.
- Music Studio – Compose music with code.
- Animation Studio – Tell stories with code.
- Greeting Studio – Design greetings for any occasion.
- Game Studio – Hack your own minigames.
Each sandbox features friendly voice-guided tutorials, a help system, and word-free picture blocks to motivate pre-readers to create whatever they can imagine!
Tynker Junior also includes 5 adventure courses with over 200 coding challenges, while introducing kids to basic programming concepts such as sequencing, conditionals, events, parameters, and loops.
Hour of Code
Tynker has been fine-tuning online learning since 2013 when we participated in our very first Hour of Code, part of Tynker’s initiative to support a community of teachers trying to bring code and computer science to every student. This past year, we hosted another full week of livestreams with special guests from NASA, an amazing Code Jam competition with big prizes, and, of course, our collection of 40+ free Hour of Code puzzles and projects.
So, to all the educators who offered Hour of Code to their students, thank you for making it another great success, and we look forward to raising the bar in 2021!
We Added 2 New Courses in 2020 and More Are On the Way!
- Ada’s Adventure: (ages 7+) Learn to code while you help Professor Ada defeat Dr. Glitch with math and problem-solving skills.
- Creative Coding – (ages 8+) Learn to code while you explore Art, Animation, Music, and Game Design with 63 programming activities.
Tynker is proud to have won numerous awards this past year, and we’re striving to do an even better job in 2021.
Coding is the Creative Blueprint for the 21st Century.