We had Saturday school with Isaiambalam children in Udavi school. Children were back from republic day holiday. Children had a lot of enthu playing games. Some of the children went to STEMland. Initially they were all playing games. Some of them were interested in doing something with the computer.
Some of the younger children from 3rd grade were doing programming in scratch. One of the children from 5th grade made an Alice program. He was very excited when he made his first animation in Alice.
One of the children from 3rd grade made a scratch program which made a cat to move when he puts the mouse over the cat. These were tiny programs they made but they were very excited when they could do such things on their own with the computer.
Note: I will share the Alice program and scratch program editing this blog soon.
Sankith from Asha (One of our funder) visited STEM land. He visited both centres Isaiambalam and Udavi. Children were very excited to show what they have learnt in STEM land. They also showed their projects.
Janani and Vishal made a homopolar motor. Janani got excited when she saw this experiment online and she wanted to build one on her own.
Materials needed:1*AA battery, 3*neodymium magnet, Coper wire of length30cm.
Step 1: Place the three magnets at the negative terminal of the battery.
Step 2: Bend the coper wire as shown in the figure. Make sure it is not insulated, if so please scratch the wire till you get rid of the enamel.
Step3: Put all of them together. Place the coper bend wire on top of the positive terminal of the battery and other end touching the negative terminal of the battery.
Take a look at the video:
The current in this homopolar motor flows in the presence of a magnetic field. When a current flows in a magnetic field, it will experience something known as the Lorentz force. The Lorentz force is what causes the wire to spin around the battery.
The wire connects to the battery at three points. One point of the wire is on the positive terminal, and the two ends of the wire are near the magnet, on the negative terminal. The current flows out of the positive terminal and down both sides of the wire. The magnetic field pushes the current outwards, causing the wires to rotate.
I made a model of Half wave and Full wave rectifier using LT spice.
Half wave rectifier:
A half wave rectifier is a device which makes use of properties of a pn junction diode. A PN junction diode only allows the current when it is forward biased. When it comes to real life application we need DC voltage. This circuit converts AC to DC voltage.
Full wave rectifier:
A full wave rectifier uses two PN junction diode which is more efficient and burns less power. It uses both the cycles of the AC wave and gives a smooth curve.
Children of Isaimbalam were very much interested in Soldering and making simple circuits. We got many Vega kits were the circuits are already printed in a PCB. Children study the datasheet of a particular circuit and solder. Children from 6th and 7th soldered few kits. They were very happy when some of them worked.
Since they are young and new they made mistakes by flipping few components here and then but they tinkered with my help.
Circuits like Disco light, Light sensor and water level indicator worked.
Bala was so happy when we were testing the water level indicator and the light one by one lighted up. Auyush also connected a buzzer to indicate low light.
Children wanted to make a recycling water system to water the magic garden. We thought of using the waste water from the kitchen to water the plant since so much of water is daily used to wash the vessels, clean vegetables etc. To know the amount of water used daily for the kitchen we need to know the volume of the tank. Kavitha told that the volume of the kitchen tank was 2000 L.
To make sure of what we know already we measured the height and circumference of the cylindrical tank in order find the volume of the tank.
To measure the height of the tank we used a bamboo stick.
Children marked the height of the tank on the bamboo stick.
Measure Circumference to determine radius:
We used thread to know the circumference.
Children took the thread around the circular shaped ring and marked on the thread.
The challenging part was we was not able to find the measuring tape. Then we came up with an idea to use the metre scale chiildren already used.
We found that the height of the tank was approx 3 m and Circumference to be around 3.14 m.
Through this we found out that the radius was half a meter.
Finally we found out that the tank volume was approximately 2355 L.
This might be an error with calculating the circumference of the circle because we found the distance outside the ring and not inside.
3rd graders and 5th graders went for a walk around the botanical garden in Auroville. Sathiyamoorthy was guiding us.
Prathap, Bala and myself were along with the children. We started with a circle and Sathiyamoorthy gave a brief introduction about what the children should do and the type of plants they were expected to see around the Botanical garden. He was basically telling about 4 types of plants.
Epiphytes (Plants that has the roots outside the soil.)
Xerophytes (Plants that grow in dry areas. (Eg., Cactus))
Semiphytes (Plants that grow in land.)
Parasites (Plants that grow on other plants and trees.)
Hydrophytes (Plants that grow in fresh water.)
Halophytes (Plants that grow in salt water. Note: These types of plants are not there in Auroville Botanical garden)
Then the children went around and Sathiyamoorthy explained about the plants. He talked about the survival techniques, leaf structure and mainly names of the trees and plants.
Children played a maze game. A garden with a maze structure was built there. Children enjoyed getting lost and finding the paths. Children also reflected at the end of the session.
First the class started with how many plants 5th graders wanted to plant in the garden. Then we decided to plant one plant for each foot. The problem started there. Children doesn’t know how much a foot is. Then the conversation went on and the children said that a foot is our foot. Exactly the foot is our foot. A foot is approximately the size of an adult foot. Then the children converted the meter dimensions of the garden they earlier measured into foot.
We went to Botanical garden after that to buy plants. Children were excited and we chose some plants and bought them. Then we came and planted them in the garden.
Each child took different responsibility and planted all the plants. Anitha gave few plants she had.Children also wrote the names of some plant they saw in the Botanical garden.