Featured Coding Cup Winner: Juan Felipe Wants To Be a Coder!
Meet our newest Featured Maker and Coding Cup winner, 12-year-old Juan Felipe from Columbia! Juan Felipe likes to play tennis. When he grows up he wants to be a computer programmer. Neat! Juan Felipe recently spoke with us about his experience coding with Tynker.
What’s your favorite subject in school, and why?
Physical education because you get to exercise yourself, and it’s a lot of adrenaline rushing through your veins.
Did you like coding cup?
In the coding cup, you actually have to program the code, and be strategic about it. There’s some people that have the strategy to beat my code, but there are some people who didn’t. So it’s kind of a luck factor.
What did your team look like?
It looked like Argentina’s shirt, with a ball in a trail of flame, and the faces were modeled after my family: my dad, my mom and my brother.
How long did it take for your team to get on the leaderboard to win?
A day. My code wasn’t 100% sophisticated at the time. It took a week or two weeks to finally finish the final touches of the code. And then, it was ready to keep climbing up.
What was your favorite code block that you used?
Tackle. Yeah, because so many times, the players just take your balls. And without the tackle, the coding cup will be nothing, absolutely nothing. So that’s why in the coding cup, I also maxed up my tackling skill.
So have you been introduced to Tynker before, or was this the first time that you were introduced to Tynker?
I was introduced to Tynker by my school. And they introduced me to the coding cup as our first activity. Naturally, I liked the coding cup so much that I got obsessed, and well, here I am now.
So why do you like to code?
Personally, because I love computers. They are very useful. And well, they help us do things in life that we will not be able to deal without it. They can multitask. They can connect us to the world. That’s things that we aren’t able to do. And so, I want to be a part of that, further than just being a user that has been tracked, and yeah. So I just want to be a part of that. I just want to help people like that.
What is the best thing about Tynker?
The interactivity and the design of the games, and little things that are puzzles, that just want to make you stay and program more. And it’s so cool. I love that.
Do you think other kids should try coding? Why is that?
Yes, definitely. If they like computers, if they like the technical stuff, but they still want more. For example, again, you’re waiting for a game to update, and you just want more of it, well, why not create it yourself? It’s faster, and it’s actually way more fun.
What advice would you give to kids starting out with Tynker?
Definitely start with coding blocks. Do not try the text lines until you’ve either learned the cooling blocks, or perfect. A way to do that is, for example, the coding cup. It has a lot of tutorials. And they are a little amount of blocks that you can use in an extremely creative way.
It’s great to see Tynker thrive when it’s such a good program that can definitely help me jump start in my life of coding. So props to you.
Thank you, so much, Juan Felipe. And kudos to you for such an excellent job as a coder. We’re so proud of you.
Juan Felipe’s Dad, Jorge, spoke with us about Juan Felipe learning to code.
How do you feel about Juan Felipe learning to code? How does it feel to see the coding projects that he is making?
It’s that different view of the world. You need to understand relationships between objects, and you need to teach the machine how to understand, and how to do things. And that’s great because it’s a very good activity for kids. Because you need to improve your math, your physics, and your understanding about that. And it’s really great. For us, it’s great. Because in the future, machines are going to be inside everything. And that’s the reason coding is really important, and it provided very interesting and cognitive challenges for him.
Do you feel like your child is better prepared for the future?
Yes. Certainly, yes. Our understanding with my wife and me is, coding is a basic skill for the future. Everyone needs to understand how to code. Because coding is going to be inside everything else. It’s not only in the internet, not only in the phone. Everything that you are going to use in the future, coding, is going to be inside them.
So how do you support Juan Felipe in his coding endeavors?
First is, he enjoys the classes. We need very good teacher. Your courses are really good, it’s content, and the tools that you provide to him to understand and to learn are really good. Our support is, first, that he has the time to learn.
This is very important, not only in the classes. After classes, or before classes, he needs to do some kind of activities. Our support is that he has the time. And when he has questions, yes, we try to provide the information that he needs, for example, or review theprojects, and check the projects. Maybe the syntax, maybe the logic is not good, and we provide hints with feedback about that.