Reflections on LNET(Learning Network)

STEM land team attended the  LNET conference in Bangalore. Here is the reflections about the conference as a team.

Arun

I learnt about games that can help children to be engaged in the class rooms, prove (a+b)^2 & Pythagoras, energizers which help children who come from holidays and breaks, Introduce decimals and place values, learnt thought break games.

I interacted with Padnaban on children’s exposure to different concepts. I realized that at a child’s level it’s important for them to work on abstraction and they have a beginners mind to learn. I talked with a creative teacher about sending children outside when they wanted to play for sometime. It helped children to be focused once they come in the class and engage with the children (younger children 3-5 years).

I conducted a session on Stewardship and 7 segment display along with my team. Include thought breaks in classes.

Logeshwari

The History and Geography session of Aruna really struck me. I learned the format of how to introduce a concept in History and Geography. First Do activities and cards of a concept (eg.volcano), second do words related to that concept, third show movies and tell stories of the concept. And now the students will now have got an idea of almost the concept. So finally tell the fact about the concept. The interaction that made me grow was the need to learn History. History gives us experience of many people and many different situations, from which we can learn. I am interested in Geography but not in History. After attending the session I was really interested and I felt like learning the history is very simple.

The activity of showing children the flash cards at the end of class and not to talk anything more about it on that day, it will make the children to learn that. For example Aruna showed five cards of valleys and mountain and didn’t tell anything more about it. I was really curious of what it is. Children will also feel the same. This will make the children interested, which I would like to use in my class.

By learning history I could come out of the myths that we all generally have. For example, British were ruling most of India. It built an interest in me to learn history.

The overall insight about the LNET conference is that I didn’t feel that we all were from different places, schools or organizations. I felt the same because the motivation and the reason for the development and growth of children is the same. As a teacher it was really helpful for me. I learnt the different activity based learning from the conference.

Poovizhi

I learned different ways of teaching a subject to children. I learned the relationship between math and art from Swathi’s session. I learned to introduce line and concepts in geometry using sticks. I learned the importance of History and how it is related to Geography. I learned the way to teach history and geography using flash cards. From Manjunath’s session I learned the activities to do with children to build a good relationship between the team and to be energetic.

I got an opportunity to meet people who are also keen in changing the rotten the education system and are really taking effort for an alternative education where children enjoy learning. I shared about STEM land and I felt acknowledged for the work we do here.

I participated in the sessions and we conducted a session on LIAP and seven segment display.

I will apply the methods I’ve learned to teach decimal values, geometric concepts and ask children to come up with their own booklets with short stories. I’ll do some activities with the children when the class feels dull.

I’ve got a sense that people are there around the world who are willing to make change in the education system and are doing it at their best from where ever the are and are always ready to share and support others to learn and grow together.

Pratap

What I learnt from the conference is, how to engage with the children with geography and history.

How to introduce in step by step and break it down into smaller problems and introduce to the children. Make the concept concrete by doing activity related the concept. I participated in the Math sessions where I learnt how to introduce decimal and visualize the concept to the children. I also learnt exponential series.

All the people who came to the conference were teachers and when I told about what we do in STEM land the teacher were impressed and was able to inspire them. I used some of the SFNE tools to talk with others eg. powerful speaking and committed request. I felt I am not alone trying to change the education system there are so many people who are trying to exchange various method that worked for them in teaching to children.

My contribution to success of the conference are participating in all the session. Presented a session on SFNE for the teacher and gave electronic session to the kids. It was really interesting. Participating in sessions beyond the conference like Sundaram session on decimal and Manjunath session on theater session.

While doing EBD I use to concentrate only on Math and science but now I will also concentrate in including history and geography. I will also do assessment for the children at end of each EBD.
By interacting and exchanging ideas with the teacher gave me clarity on how to teach and explore with the children to learn and retain the concept.

Ranjith

I learnt about creating arts and GP series by cutting a triangle(fractal triangle), AP series by cutting a square, prove (a+b)^2 & Pythagoras, Approaches to developing emotional intelligence in children (similar to identifying fear and take action with responsibility), Introduce decimals and place values, kirigami Math arts.

I interacted with Manjunath about thought break games for both children and teachers, I realized that making children feel better before starting class is important, because it helps children to focus.

I participated in other session and we also conducted session leadership in action and 7-segment display. Introduce Art in Math and Emotional Intelligence to children.

Saranya

I learnt new activities, how to introduce division,place value,patterns and types of pattern, learnt what is theater learning, (a+b)2 through dotted sheet.

I interacted with Emma she did master in education. She worked in different zone after few years she started teaching for kids. She focuses only on English. She shared her story with me why she took specifically English and etc..there I got an opportunity to share my experience with children and we shared what material we will use for to improve children communication.

I participated in other session and we also conducted session leadership in action and 7-segment display. Few children voluntarily came and learnt about 7-segment display and I had a grate time with them.Beyond the conference I had a session with Manjunath and Sudaram. That session was very useful for me. I had a different experience with different person. It helped for my growth.

Experience in theater learning session was interesting for me.

Lesson Plan

We all learnt how to make a lesson plan from Naveen. He gave a presentation on how to make a lesson plan. Lesson plan is making a plan of a lesson/chapter before teaching to the students. It is pre-preparation of the teacher to achieve what he/she wants the children to learn. By using the lesson plan format I got a clear idea. As teachers it is important to have clarity on what how am I going to take the class. Infact the lesson plan helped me to do it. In the month of March we learnt the steps of perfection, I see this lesson plan as its first step-clarity of what we are doing.

The lesson plan has teaching points, learning objectives, previous knowledge, etc., which helped me easier to divide the lesson into smaller pieces. While creating a lesson plan I learnt many new things like the senses of animals and birds.

Powerful Speaking

-Logeshwari

This week we worked with “Powerful Speaking” a tool from the Stewardship for New Emergence program. It was new for some of us in the team. Everyone shared for about three minutes on what they want to accomplish in the upcoming year. We used the conscious full spectrum to fill what and how to accomplish. I wanted to work on the EBD (Education By Design) more, learn from it and to be able to do EBDs with children.

Once each person shared we gave feedback to them. I learnt how to give feedback to others and learned to distinguish it from advice. The format of the feedback we used was ‘retain’, ‘increase’ and ‘decrease’ on what the person spoke supporting them to speak again the next time, possibly to a different forum.  From this tool, I learnt how to come up and speak to the team and learnt to be specific on the committed requests I make.

Iffat in Isai Ambalam

– Logeshwari

Iffat from Bangladesh came along with her friend to Isai Ambalam School. She completed her Vipassana meditation in Chennai and came to Auroville. She is a writer and involved in arts. Initially she visited Udavi School and then came to Isai Ambalam. Pratap and I were showing and explaining the EBD (Education By Design) that children made. We showed all the EBDs like pond, clay room, tree house, clay oven, India map, vegetable garden and Kitchen waste water treatment. Tree house was explained by the Josh who made this initiative possible in school. Both of them climbed the tree house and enjoyed it.

Students had their examinations at that time. The sixth and seventh graders built a small India map, which was an assessment for them. Two hours was allocated for them to complete it and they completed with five minutes to spare. Then they project was assessed by Ragu. Then later Iffat and her friend interacted with children.

Shell commands

I learnt about shell commands. A Shell is an environment which is used to run our commands and programs. It is an user interface with the operating system. There are many different types of shell. I learnt some commands in bash and C shell. Bash is one of the original shell which developed for UNIX computers. C shell was developed based on model of C programming syntax. To know which shell you are using type echo $0.
I learnt how to define variables both in bash and C shell. Bash is denoted by $. The syntax to define a variable is $a = 5
To print the value of the variable use the command echo $a. In C shell we need to set the environment variable. So the syntax goes like this. setenv a 10. An environmental variable has the name and the value.
To go to the home directory ~/.cshrc and ~/.bashrc for C shell and Bash respectively.

Cutting Bamboo

In Saturday school students had different tasks to do in school. One of them was cutting bamboo tree and making them into pieces for putting banner in many places in Auroville. The banner was for Isai ambalam School. The day before (Friday) students had already cut some of the bamboo tree. We knew the specifications of how many bamboo sticks are needed and what are all the measurements. We need to 12 sticks of 17 feet (5 meters and 10 cm) and 12 sticks of 11 feet (3 meters and 35 cm). Students measured the length using tape and cut them using axe ,saw and knifes. While doing this task the students measurements and conversion of feet to meters.

India map

Students from 6th and 7th graders made India map using red soil, clay, bricks, pebbles, sand, alluvial soil, black soil. They first wanted to make it on the loft. First they drew a three meters height and three meters width box. Each student were given separate parts of the country to draw. By using graph sheets they drew the map of India.

They made the structure of India using clay. Since there was heavy sun on the loft, the clay got cracks. So students decided to make in on the ground. They did the same thing in the ground. Now they gave shelter to it. But still after a few days it had cracks. Then students came up with a solution that since the layer of the clay is so thin, it had cracks. We had some remaining soil left after the work of oven Education By Design (EBD), so students used that red soil and created another layer above the clay. By using bricks and red soil students built the mountains. In order to differentiate between desert, mountains and rivers they used different materials. For the rivers they mixed the cement with water and built many rivers in India. For desert, they put normal sand. In the eastern parts of the country, they put the alluvial soil. Because the rivers take the alluvial soil and leave it in the delta before joining the sea. Tasks were properly divided among students and it took about two weeks for them to complete the map. The final output of the map was looking good with mountains, rivers and other geographical features. By doing this EBD they learnt Geography of India. Their teacher Ragu supported them.

 

 

First digit on clock

– Logeshwari

In electronics, initially I displayed my name using Seven Segment Display(SSD). I had already posted that in My First Blog. After that I wanted to learn more on SSD. So I was asked to make a digital clock. I have completed the first digit of the seconds. I used two JK flip flops (HD74LS76A), decoder (SN74LS47), a SSD (Common Anode) and Signal Generator. I first made the connections of JK flip flop on a breadboard. The input is clock signal which is generated from a signal generator of Frequency 1Hz. The combination of the two flip flops acts like a counter. Once the circuit is connected, I tested the output of the flip flop using an ocilloscope. I got the waveforms like this.

Then I took the decoder and connected the outputs to the input pins of the decoder. Decoder (converts the binary information to 2n outputs) is connected to the seven segment display. While doing decoder I was able to recall Karnaugh-Map which is the logic behind it. The output of the decoder is fed to the seven segment display. Once everything is done then it counts from zero to fifteen (f-represented in binary).

 

Since the one’s digit of the clock counts only upto nine and after that it should reset to zero. For resettting the digit to zero I used NAND gate. Binary representation of nine is 1001. When the Most Significant Bit and the Least Significant Bit are high(1) then it should reset to zero.

 

I have completed the first step only, but I feel happy that I learnt and understood what I did. I acknowledge Sanjeev, Sundhar and Ranjith for guiding me.

Projects for Raman awards – Isaiambalam

Raman Young Science Innovator Award is a contest for students studying from III to X standards grouped into three. Students from IIIto IV, V to VIII and IX to X. We heard about this contest and started registering for it on 31st January. The registered students got their login credentials through their mail after 31st January. We submitted their projects on the last date on 10th February (extended to 12th February). Eight students submitted their innovation projects from Isai ambalam School. They are Ayush Jena, Suresh and Vasanth Kumar from class VII. Balamurugan, Kaviya, Sabari anandh and Yuvasri from class VI and Sharani from class V.

Ayush Jena (Class VII)
Ayush chose the topic buoyancy. He made an animation using scratch which explains the buoyancy of ships.

Suresh (Class VII)
He made his project on conductors and non-conductors.His main objective of the project is to find if the material is a conductor or non-conductor.He made a circuit and placed in inside a box.If the material is a conductor then the light will glow. If the light doesn’t glow then the material is not a conductor(non-conductor).The materials he used to make this project are wires, bulb, battery, box and iron.

Vasanth Kumar (Class IX)
Vasanth Kumar chose the topic Plant Kingdom. He took banana and he made an animation using scratch.In his animation he explained the benefits of bananas, scientific names and different things about it.

Balamurugan (Class VI)
He chose the topic density. He took a bowl of water and filled water upto 100 ml. Then he put some stones in the bowl until the water level rises to 110 ml. Then he took the stones in the bowl and weighed them with a weighing machine. It was 100 gm, which is equal to the rise in the water level.

Kaviya (Class VI)
Kaviya made her project in convection. She experimented by using coloured ice cubes. She was able to see the colour of the ice cubes get sink in the water. She observed that the speed of the speed of the ice cubes dissolving in water.

Sabari Anandh (Class VI)
Sabari chose the topic Plant Kingdom.He made his project using scratch. He selected neem, squirel, mamgo and described their important characteristics. Then he explained what is the connection between them using scratch.

Yuvasri (Class VI)
Yuvasri chose the topic melting point. She tested the melting point of ice cubes. She understood why the ice cubes melts when heated and what happens when heated.

Sharani (Class V)
Sharani chose the topic density. She took honey, vegetable oil, soup oil, coloured water and syrup. She poured all the liquid one by one glass bottle. Honey settles down because it has density greater than one. Similarly she formed five layers in the bottle.

Raman Award Projects – Udavi School

Raman Young Science Innovator Award is a contest for students studying from III to X standards grouped into three. Students from III to IV, V to VIII and IX to X. We heard about this contest and started registering for it on 31st January. The registered students got their login credentials through their mail after 31st January. We submitted their projects on the last date on 10th February (extended to 12th February). 11 students from Udavi School chose their topics and submitted their Innovation projects. They are Abitha, Amsavalli, Hariharan, Kabilan, Punidhavel, Suriya and Vignesh from IX standard. Baranidharan from VIII and Arvindh, Pranav and Vishal from VII standard. The topics were based on their standards.

Abitha (Class IX)

Abitha chose the topic refraction. She studied about refraction in her academic books, so she thought of making it in practical. She made her project using GeoGebra. GeoGebra is a Dynamic Mathematics Software (DMS) for teaching and learning mathematics. She used two mediums. Both of them are air. The incident ray and the refracted ray has the same angle. The refraction index of the second medium increases then the angle decreases.

 

2.Amsavalli (class IX)

Amsavalli did a project on reflection. She did her project using GeoGebra.When the incident ray falls on the mirror and the ray gets reflected. This is the reflected ray. She showed the angles of the reflection in an animated form.

3.Hariharan (Class IX)

Hariharan chose the topic frequency. He made his project using Arduino. He used an ultrasonic sensor which will detect the object. He wrote his program in Arduino. When any object is placed in front of the ultra sonic sensor it makes beep sound. When the object is far from the sensor the volume becomes low. Based upon the distance of the object to the sensor, the sound will differ.

4.Kabilan (Class IX)

Kabilan made a microscope using a mobile phone and lens of laser light. He placed the object on the lense and it shows the enlarged image of it in the mobile. He made this microscope, because when he was using a microscope the light hurt him. So he wanted to make a microscope which does’t hurt. He tested the microscope by seeing the microscopic view of leaves and insects.


5.Punidhavel (Class IX)

Punidhavel made a piano using resistors, basar and battery. He made his connections in a breadboard. He used resistors and buzzors to make sound. After completing the project he made the sa re ga ma tune.

6.Suriya (Class IX)

Suriya made a pie chart using GeoGebra about the natural gases in the atmosphere.

7.Vignesh (CLass IX)

Vignesh chose the topic frequency. The materials which Vignesh used are ocilloscope, microphone and  341 tuning fork. He measured the frequency of tuning fork with the help of microphone and oscilloscope. By using this we can also measure the heart beat frequency.

8.Bharanidharan (Class VIII)

He made an inverter using Arduino. The materials he used are Arduino, Breadboard, voltage regulator, resistor(10 k ohm), 9V battery, transformer, wires and laptop. He made a program to blink the Led at 50Hz. Then he dumped the program in the Arduino. He connected it to a CRO and saw the square waveform. Then he connected the remaining circuits on the breadboard. He used the voltage source from which nine volt DC input is fed to the transformer. The output of the transformer is 230 volt AC. After that he connected a 5 Watts bulb to the ouput. Eventually the bulb glowed.

9.Arvindh (Class VII)

He made his project on slow combution explaining the ignition temperature.

10.Pranav (Class VII)

Pranav made a steam engine.He took two wooden pieces and on each edge he made a hole and put a screw. He placed a tin above the wooden pieces and stuck it with glue. He made a hole on top and one side of the tin. He broke the pen into two and inserted each piece in the two holes. Then he kept a motor which was connected to another wooden piece. A Led was also connected to this wooden piece. When fire is lit up, it goes through the tin and it makes the turbine to rotate.

11.Vishal (Class VII)

Vishal made a project on combution. He made a small stove using two tins. First he took the small tin and made holes then the bigger tin and made holes in it. The smaller tin is placed inside the bigger tin. A vessel is placed on the tin. Using small wooden pieces he made fire. He poured water in the vessel, which got heated quickly.

Students made their project with their full involvement and felt happy after submitting their innovation project.