"My dad does high tech coding at Envato (that's is where he works)! I've always wanted to code like him it Looks so cool! I know HTML tags all of them! My dad knows all tags AND IT IS SO COOL!!!?????" - One very happy Moonhack participant.
Last week 28,575 kids (17,167 of them Australian), from 484 coding clubs in 56 countries broke the world record for the most number of kids coding in one day.
49 per cent of all participants were girls, many in the crucial nine to 11 age group.
First started in 2016, Moonhack is an annual event supported by the Telstra Foundation, aiming to give an opportunity for kids to learn code - and for coding whizz kids to flex some muscle and engage with their peers.
The program is really giving a big push for digital literacy - an important skill every child needs in the modern world - and to continue the conversations about the importance of kids learning to code.
Last year's Moonhack set the world record with 10,207 Aussie kids all coding on the same day. This year, Moonhack went global with kids all over the world coding over a period of 24 hours. The event first started in Wellington and Auckland in New Zealand, the closest cities to the International Date Line, and continued around the globe for the day of August 15th in every country.
Every single continent (apart from Antarctica (but maybe next year!)) was represented in this year's Moonhack, with countries including: Argentina, Bangladesh, Canada, Egypt, Estonia, Guatemala, India, Iraq, Nigeria, Russia, South Korea, United Kingdom, United States, and many others, joining the movement.
Kids took part in coding exercises from their homes, at Code Clubs in their schools, local libraries, and community centres. Participants were encouraged to complete one of Moonhack’s open source projects in Scratch, Scratch JR or Python, or create and submit their own coding projects that had a moon theme.
Nine to 11 year olds made up 54 per cent of all participants.
"What these kids demonstrated was more than just a great big show of skill and interest in coding and education, they showed that together, kids from different backgrounds, nations, abilities and support systems, can work together towards a common goal that's bigger than any one entity," Code Club Australia General Manager Kelly Tagalan said.
"Code Club isn’t just about technical skill building, it's also about strengthening the community, raising the aspirations of future employees, and creating enthusiasm around peer collaboration and achieving the impossible, together. We're so astounded that we were able to break the world record that we set last year and that children from all sides of the world were able to join in on this momentous occasion."
Among the hundreds of clubs around Australia that hosted the participating coders, Telstra's Customer Insight Centre and Gurrowa Innovation Lab in Sydney and Melbourne, respectively, were Mission Control for Moonhack. Nearly 50 kids (assisted by teachers, parents and Telstra volunteers) completed their exercises inside Telstra's high-tech rooms.
"Through the wonder of space, Moonhack has inspired kids to create with technology, not just consume it," said Jackie Coates, Head of the Telstra Foundation, Code Club Australia's founding partner.
"The Telstra Foundation shares Code Club’s mission to get every Australian kid coding. We're blown away that this year's Moonhack has connected with kids all over the world, truly demonstrating that code is the universal language of the 21st century."