Our students are our pride and joy, and we love celebrating their exciting coding journeys with them, including their achievements! We are very proud of how far our talented and bright student, Evan Chua, has come since he started coding with us at the age of 9! He has achieved the Gold Award (the second highest honour) at the Hwa Chong Infocomm Challenge (HCIC) 2022!
Evan’s achievements are testament to his grit and perseverance, which he has honed over the years at Coding Lab through his willingness to solve challenging coding problems, and constantly asking questions in class so that he can understand complex coding concepts better! The Coding Lab team has interviewed Evan, who is advancing through S112 as of 2022, to find out more about his journey with coding thus far.
Hi Evan, tell us about yourself! What are your hobbies?
I’m Evan Chua, and I find English to be my personal favourite subject. Besides Coding, I am an avid player of chess, and I play the piano occasionally. In my free time, I either revise my work in preparation for the Preliminary Examinations and PSLE or Code. However, in light of the examinations which are imminent, I have spent more time on the former rather than the latter.
What do your friends and family say when they hear that you are a coder?
When they hear that I’m a coder, many of them are curious as they have heard about coding but wonder what’s it all about. I try to explain concepts I’ve learnt to them in simple terms and I feel a sense of accomplishment in sharing what I’m able to achieve in this new evolving area.
Congratulations on winning the Gold Award at the HCIC! How do you feel about your achievement?
I feel very satisfied with myself in attaining the gold award for the HCIC. This award was not easy to obtain. One must know technical knowledge whilst recalling coding, and apply it into the questions that require coding input.
“In this digital era, almost everything can be completed or done online. So, learning how to code is especially important now in order to not lose yourself in the maze of what is today’s ever-rapidly increasing complexity in technology.“
How was your HCIC experience? What have you learned? What was the best part of it?
The HCIC Experience was one of its kind. It was held at the computer room, which I had not entered in a long time. Also, there were many people gathered around, attempting to do some last minute revision. Overall, we had to enter a link and answer the questions from there. One thing I noticed was that they showed the mark demographic for each question. It was a bit similar to an exam, but also different.
How did you first get started with coding?
I first began coding at the age of 9. During the June Holidays, I was mostly sitting around doing nothing. Seeing my boredom, my Mother came across a Coding Camp, and suggested that I join. I found it interesting, especially with the lack of activities going on. Hence, I agreed, which is to this day one of the best decisions I had ever made.
Once at the facility, I was amazed by all the laptops and people. Others like me were present, and they all gave me an ineffable feeling that always made me laugh. My teacher at the time was very patient, guiding us all through the process slowly, and if we did not fully grasp the concept, she would explain it to us in clear detail. It was such a memorable experience that I joined the enrichment centre that held this program, Coding Lab.
What do you like about coding? How has coding made a difference in your life?
The part that I find the most meaningful is the part of creating something from nothing. When opening a Coding Platform, be it Scratch, Python, etc, I am exposed to a remarkable amount of code. Gradually, as I slowly debug and improve on my coding foundation, I am able to further consolidate my knowledge.
Coding has allowed me to think out of the box and find solutions for problems that I would not have solved had I not joined. Besides, I have also learnt a myriad of formulas that would prove very useful in the future. In Conclusion, Coding has left an indelible mark on me, and I will continue doing it even after my PSLE.
“Evan is a very jovial and enthusiastic learner who takes charge of his own learning. He also contributes purposefully in class discussion and offers constructive suggestions to the class. I love his positive attitude in learning which makes it enjoyable teaching him.“– Educator Edmund
What are some difficulties that you faced while learning to code and how did you overcome it?
The first main difficulty I encountered was from Python, and it was the while loop. I simply could not wrap my head around the concept of how it worked and its applications in code. However, after extensive research and consultation with my teacher, I finally understood what it meant and its uses in code. Nowadays, I use it in almost all of my programs as it is much more efficient than just typing manually out one by one.
How did you get started at Coding Lab?
I got started in Coding Lab by joining the course offered in 2019. I like that one can independently do their work, and if they are stuck on something troublesome, the teachers are present to help them. Teacher Edmund has such a great sense of humour, I enjoyed it very much when he coached me on my DSA, and helped me as I made my Portfolio.
Why do you think learning to code is so important?
In this digital era, almost everything can be completed or done online. So, learning how to code is especially important now in order to not lose yourself in the maze of what is today’s ever-rapidly increasing complexity in technology.
“Coding has allowed me to think out of the box and find solutions for problems that I would not have solved had I not joined.“
Do you have a favourite project that you would like to share with us? Why is it your favourite?
By far, my favourite project will always be Generating permutations to r items from n items.
What are you coding right now? Any exciting future coding projects or dream project that you want to mention?
Currently, I am attempting to code so that I will have the ability to randomly generate passwords of my length and choice with adequate security, which is important for a password generator. Therefore, I am learning the ins and outs of the random module, a module required for randomly selecting from symbols, numbers and letters.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
When I grow up, I aspire to be a computer scientist. In this computerised era, digital knowledge is becoming more and more important in our lives. Hence, becoming a computer scientist will enable me to not only know about the latest technological advances, but also make an indelible contribution toward technology.
Do you have any advice for young people who are learning to code?
One piece of advice that is essential when coding is to not give up. Giving up shows that you are unwilling to learn, be it from mistakes or from obstacles that may come your way. If you persevere, you will at least internalise the information and learn how to apply in future code. If you have queries, try to figure it out by yourself first. If you really are unsure, please consult your teachers. They are there for a reason, and that is to help you with your code.
We are so happy to hear that Evan has benefited under the caring guidance of our experienced educators, and that our curriculum has played a role in honing his critical thinking skills! 🌏
Here at Coding Lab, we take pride in taking our students’ aspirations seriously, as our mission is to nurture future leaders in technology and help our students reach their fullest potentials! We hope that Evan’s journey and aspirations will motivate you to consider investing in your child’s education in coding!
Evan Chua started attending P101 Scratch 1 class at Coding Lab when he was barely 9 years of age and has advanced his way to S112 Python 2 by the time he was 12. He was awarded the Gold Award (the second highest honour) at the Hwa Chong Infocomm Challenge (HCIC) 2022.
Our #CodingLabStudents series features our ambitious students and their ongoing coding journeys – be it the budding coder or advanced Python Pro, we appreciate each and every single one’s efforts as they progress to greater heights. 🌱
Coding Lab offers an award-winning curriculum specially for ages 5 to 18 – check out our courses to begin your own coding journey today!
Read Next: Congratulations to our 7 winners at the Hwa Chong Infocomm Challenge 2022!
Read Next: Coding Lab Student Feature: Aidan Sin, 12, Platinum Award Winner, HCIC 2022
(Written by Thinzar and Gracia)
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