Author Archives: Sundranandhan

Unit conversion

Along with the 6th and 7th in Isaiambalam school, we wanted to estimate how far one Km would be. All the students made a guess and wrote down their check point on a route from their class.

The children wrote down how far their guess was compared to a Km, and took other nine checkpoints of other children, when they went back to class they decided to convert each checkpoint to meters, decameters, and hectometers.

Garden EBD

-Sundar and Arun

The children in Isaiambalam, had started an EBD on garden. There were already two two sets of steps(for creating beds, in order to plant) built using cement and bricks on the front side. The left side looked a little incomplete, The task was to complete a step on the left side of the structure. To do this the children had to dig out the excess soil to lay the first set of bricks.

To create the trench children had wired and made a straight line before digging. Before laying the bricks the leveling had to be checked, this was done using a tube level( a tube filled with water)

Then the cement was mixed to sand in a ratio of 1:3 along with required amount of water.

Brick work started.

Once the side steps where complete the children used the fraction kits to tell stories of proper fractions. Which they had used to while mixing cement of sand. They needed 7 pans of sand and 2 and 1/3 pans of cements.

Once the structure was complete the students had come up with values for the project. That were Respect, equality, and perseverance, and helping.

Then they started to estimate the build of materials and their cost. It started by calculating the number of bricks for 1m and expanding to number of meters they used it for. With this they started to tell multiplication and division stories.





Fraction stories with the 5th graders

The fifth graders of Udavi School started fractions, they used the material and created their own procedure. They picked cards(with proper fractions written on them) and found the required pieces and drew it on their note and exchanged stories amongst their groups. Then they played a game within in the group to assemble the appropriate fraction in the least time.

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Salvaging wires and hacking a 240V to 9V transformer from an adapter

The 7th graders from Udavi School took a project on creating a PA system. To start of we required a lot of wires so the quest for salvaging wires began. The students picked every wire possible in STEMLAND that was not being used, we had a long Ethernet cable that was damaged and removed the outer casing and rolled up the inner wires. Once the required amount of wires were acquired we needed a power supply, a broken adapter that was found among the damaged equipment’s came into good use. We opened the case and took the transformer.

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Then the primary and secondary winding s were checked for connectivity using a multi-meter.

Next the transformer was hooked up to a plug and carefully soldered and covered using heat shrink cables for maximum protection from the input voltage, thus it was ready to be tested.

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The output of the transformer was connected to the oscilloscope, but only showed 2V to 3V. But when tested with a multi meter it showed 8.5V the expected voltage. This was a little confusing. In the endย  by accident after removing the power we touched the transformer it was really hot. the adapter that the transformer was salvaged must have had burnt the core of the transformer, a while back. Then the hunt for a new transformer began.

7th girls and boys working with SSD (Seven Segment Displays)

The SSD’s had really picked up during the project period with the 7th children after Barani had created a project. The girls started to understand and light up the letters they wanted. They used the multi meter in diode mode to test whether the SSD’s where common anode or common cathode in configuration. Initially they were powering up the SSD’s with a 9V battery, then they started to use the arduino.

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link to Barani’s Project:

Along with them Nirmal had also joined the team and started to understand SSD’s with the support of Shalini and Sushma.

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Checking Hard drive Partitions

To check if your hard drive has more un formatted disk space that is not being utilized do the following:

  1. Right click on my computer icon.
  2. Select Manage
  3. Storage
  4. Disk Management

You will be able to see all the partitions; allocated and un allocated.

If there is un allocated space, format the partition and add label to it and make it active.

The new drive will show up in My computer ๐Ÿ˜‰

Understanding Motors; Bubble Gadget

The 6th std from Udavi,ย  Had couple of motors in their equipment stock. They were eager on biasing them. It started with removing the gear from the motor and setting a flan blade to it. The children noticed that wind was only produced in one direction when connected to terminals of a battery, it was either inward or outward. So by changing the polarity the direction of rotation also changed in the motor. Then came the idea of creating a bubble gadget( the 5th std students were playing with bubbles during the break, this gave the idea I presume) At first the students used two of the same kind of motors(same RPM) one for blowing air and the other for creating bubbles on a stick attached to a ring made by shaping copper wires into a circle and using glue gun to stick them on. This some how did not work as the both the motors were synchronized together. Then we got a 100RPM motor and used it as a substitute, this made possible of creating the bubbles ๐Ÿ™‚ Then they cut wood to make a platform to fit the set up and nailed into a plywood and the setup looks like:


Fixing STEMLAND name board, and understanding SSD

Some of the 7th std children took fixing the STEMLAND name board as a project, they started off by learning how a SSD (Seven Segment Display) works. Then they assembled the units in a bread board, but there was a bug they couldn’t power up with a 9V battery or else the SSD would burn out. To tackle this they added resistors to control the current. The other bug was some of the SSD were common anode and other common Cathode:SSDOnce the type was figured out the SSD were powered up and tested.

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