Need an app for that? Anvitha Vijay, 9, can build it. With the help of YouTube videos, the young techie from Melbourne, Australia, learned to code at age 7. Soon, she was trying her hand at making apps.
“When I first got my iPad, I was fascinated by all the apps on it,” she told TFK. “It wasn’t long before I wanted to create my own.”
She built her first two apps with her younger sister in mind. Smartkins Animals helps children identify more than 100 animals and their sounds. Smartkins Rainbow Colors teaches kids colors. Each app has been downloaded thousands of times.
Anvitha’s skills won her a scholarship to attend a big tech conference hosted by Apple in San Francisco, California. There, she got tips from the pros. She went to workshops where she learned about the latest software for app building.
All that training led to an idea for a third app. This one, called GoalsHi, inspires kids to practice good habits. Users are rewarded for achieving goals, such as eating their vegetables or practicing piano. Anvitha says the rewards are like getting a sticker for a job well done.
“Kids can set goals with this app and get stars when they achieve them,” she says. “The idea is to empower and motivate kids to achieve one little step a day.”
Anvitha’s goal is to continue creating technology that helps kids learn while having fun. But even more important to her is that the world sees the power of technology in kids’ hands. “The more training we get in tech at an early age,” she says, “the better chance we have of becoming innovation champions who will one day change the world.”