Tynker Partners With WGBH, Mattel, And Parrot Education For 2016 Hour Of Code

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New activities, free products, and prizes will motivate kids and teachers to develop computational and programming skills during global learning event

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“We have designed this year’s Hour of Code activities to spark a deeper interest in STEM subjects, computer programming, and engineering,” said Krishna Vedati, CEO of Tynker.

Tynker, the leading creative coding platform that has enabled more than 35 million kids around the world to code, today announced partnerships with public media leader WGBH Boston, Mattel, and Parrot Education to expand activities and opportunities for teachers and students to participate in the Hour of Code, taking place from December 5-11, 2016.

Hour of Code is the largest global education event in history with more than 200 million participants since 2012. Through previous Hour of Code events, more than 30 million students used Tynker across more than a dozen countries.

“We want to turn your students’ passion for playing video games, crafting with Minecraft, and playing with toys into valuable life skills,” says Krishna Vedati, CEO of Tynker. “We have designed this year’s activities to spark a deeper interest in STEM subjects, computer programming, and engineering.”

Tynker’s new Hour of Code partnership with WGBH Boston will provide early elementary students the opportunity to build storytelling and animation projects such as Dance with Friends and Nature Walk with characters from the popular website and TV series PEEP and the Big Wide World.

“WGBH and Tynker share the same mission of giving children the foundation they need to develop their STEM knowledge,” says Marisa Wolsky, Executive Producer of PEEP and the Big Wide World. “In bringing characters from PEEP and the Big Wide World to the Hour of Code, together we will be able to capitalize on the power of story and appealing characters to teach foundational computational thinking concepts to young learners.”

Students in upper elementary and middle school will be able to program their Hot Wheels cars to win races and help the ghouls of Monster High complete a scavenger hunt.

“At Mattel, we’re passionate about harnessing the power of play to drive learning and development for kids around the world,” said Geoff Walker, Mattel’s Chief Strategic Technology Officer. “We’re thrilled to partner with Tynker to help kids to learn to code in a fun and engaging way.”

Students who are already comfortable with coding fundamentals can try Counter Hack and Toxic Jungle, Tynker’s new JavaScript and Python tutorials, where they get a taste of real-world programming with mainstream languages.

Young learners who enjoy Minecraft can also use Tynker to modify their experience as they program mods, customize skins, and resource packs, and design add-ons. Those with access to connected toys like Sphero, Lego WeDo, or Parrot drones can program their devices with code using the Tynker tablet app.

Through its partnership with Parrot, Tynker is offering a chance for teachers to win a drone. To enter, teachers need to tweet a picture of their students doing an Hour of Code with Tynker using the tag #iwantafreedrone to @GoTynker and @ParrotEducation. Winners will be chosen from all entries on December 14.

Jerome Bouvard, Director of Parrot Education, has seen countless applications of Parrot drone technology used across all industries. “There is a drone revolution occurring across the globe,” says Bouvard. “Drones provide an aerial perspective, giving rise to new applications that have not even been imagined yet. Programming drones with Tynker will inspire kids with new and exciting ways to learn as they program aerial stunts, take pictures, or send the drone on a flight plan.”

Tynker’s Hour of Code activities are the best option for teachers to engage their students in coding. Teacher-friendly features include easy setup, progress tracking, completion certificates, and STEM curriculum options beyond the Hour of Code. With Tynker’s classroom management features, teachers can easily add and organize students, assign age-appropriate activities, and track progress. Teachers can register and get started by visiting https://www.tynker.com/hour-of-code/teacher

In addition to the new and existing partnerships, Tynker will offer limited opportunities and special prizes for Hour of Code participation from December 5-11, including:

  • Free download of the Tynker for Schools App on iPads and Android tablets, usually $5.99
  • The chance for teachers to win free drones
  • New cross-curricular activities for teachers to connect coding to other subjects such as Social Studies, Math, and Science

"Hour of Code is a fantastic way to engage kids in the global learning community around STEM and computer coding,” says Vedati. "Our exciting new partners and products will ensure that anyone, at any level, can find a fun and entertaining way to join Hour of Code and learn about coding.”

About Tynker
Tynker’s award-winning creative computing platform helps children develop computational thinking and programming skills in a fun, intuitive, and imaginative way. Tynker is used by more than 50,000 schools and 35 million students, spanning over 200 countries. Tynker was founded by a seasoned team of technology entrepreneurs who share a passion for giving children the critical life skills they’ll need for 21st century careers.

About WGBH
WGBH Boston is America’s preeminent public broadcaster and the largest producer of PBS content for TV and the Web, including Frontline, NOVA, American Experience, Masterpiece and Antiques Roadshow, as well as lifestyle and children’s series. WGBH also is a major supplier of programming for public radio, and a leader in educational multimedia for the classroom, supplying content to PBS LearningMedia. WGBH is a pioneer in technologies and services that make media accessible to those with hearing or visual impairments. More info at http://www.wgbh.org/.

Media Contact:
Alyssa Miller
alyssa(at)ammediaworks.com
973-615-1292

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