STEM Land Newsletter Volume-7, Jun ’19-Sep’19

~Sundar, Sandhiya

 

STEM Land Newsletter

Volume-7, Jun’19-Sep’19

About STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) land

STEM Land is currently located in two outreach (Isai Ambalam and Udavi) schools of Auroville. Children come to STEM Land for their Mathematics, EVS, and Science classes. They learn Mathematics, Electronics, 3D-Printing, Programming, Mindstorms (Robotics), strategic games puzzles and much more.

The children take responsibility for their learning and plan their goals. They work individually, in pairs or peer groups and ask for support from facilitators when they need it. This self-directed learning is based on Sri Aurobindo’s first True principle of education (Aurobindo, 1910); “Nothing can be taught”. With younger children, we work on real-life projects that impact their surroundings. We believe a nurturing environment can support a child’s learning. Read more


Growth of the team and new engagements

This has been an exciting four months at STEM land. Our team of youth supported through our partners has doubled. This came with a n engagement with Quilt.AI (https://quilt.ai/) A Singapore based AI company currently supports the 5 members of a technical AI(Artificial Intelligence) team who work on analysis and analytics of web data as well as 4 members of the content team who are working on analysis and content for Quilt. This has also supported STEM land expand and create an English program other than the Mathematics and EVS/Science support we provide to schools. We are currently a team of 18 Engineering and Arts Professionals. Our projects with partners range from embedded software in Python, Analog VLSI layout,  Artificial Intelligence and analytics. Meet the team


(Left to right) Murali, Thamizhselvi, Anupama, Prabha, Vimal, Bhuvana, Sanjeev, Sriman, Pratap, Ranjith, Arun, Sandhya, Sivaraman, Poovizhi, Abilash, Sundranandhan, Vasanth, Saranya, rushikesh (Naveen and Logeshwari are not in this picture).

We organized a teacher training program over the summer for organizations that were interested in setting STEM land at those locations or learn programming with children among them were Abilash, Jagdeeshwari, Saravanan, Savitri, Vimal, who are setting up STEM land at AV schools, Tamarai, Aikiyam School and AIAT. Also a paper based on the workshop “Conscious teacher training supporting inner development along with developing skills and competencies” has been accepted at epiSTEME8 that we will present at Homi Baba Center of Science Education in January.

STEM Land New Location Inauguration 2019.

STEM land was offered a new space in Udavi. All of us were busy setting up STEM Land for a couple of weeks. Especially, Saranya who took the lead for setting up the place. Now we have a bigger space and have a separate room for electronics.

A lot of thought was put into how space should be organized and some construction and repair was needed. This was handled by professionals and organizing the space was up to us. Saranya made a 3D model of the space and was materials should come. Everything was planned before the move, we needed no afterthoughts. Read more

Sri Aurobindo  birthday and Independence day celebration run 

As India marked its 73rd Independence Day, Children’s of Isaiambalam school celebrated Independence Day with flag hoisting and cultural events. We started our day at 5:00 am with bonfire and meditation for an hour in amphitheater Matrimandir Auroville. Later, we had started our marathon. Our Whole team and teachers helped to organize this event. Students started their marathon from Auroville Matrimandir across the Auroville communities and villages and reached school. Our Principle Dr.Sanjeev and teachers followed them and encouraged to finish the marathon. Read more

Javascript course

We had an intense course offered at STEM land by Umang Doctor who has over 18 years of experience in software development and digital technologies. Ten people participated in the course and we learned and Practical experience of responsive website development primarily using JavaScript.The course included: HTML 5, CSS 3, ES6, Bootstrap 4, JavaScript basics, Data structures using JavaScript, JavaScript modules, OOPS, Debugging using Chrome. Read more.

Internship at STEMLand

Three students from college came to STEM land for intern-ship for two weeks to learn Scratch programming. We have asked them to create some projects from scratch. They created some video projects on addition, fraction, number line, multiplication, representing and arranging ascending order and descending order with squares. People from STEM land took Stewardship for new emergence for them. They took a few tools from that session for them. For examples stand, fear, deep listening, and background conversation, four profile and Conscious Full-spectrum Response. Read more

Inspiration-program

We are working in collaboration with Ramakrishna Mission on a personality development program (part of Human Excellence). Swami Krishnan Maharaj from Ramakrishna mission in Chengalpattu helped set up the program that we call Inspiration at Isaiamblam school. The program is across verticals with groups that include some teachers, volunteers and children from 6th to 8th grades in each group. We discussed the inspiration and how it feels when we get inspired. Then we learned about value-added education where we need to add value throughout our life. Then we split up into 6 teams and got a topic for each team. The team was mixed with teachers, STEM land volunteers, and children. Read more.

2017-2018 batch children’s reflection on STEM land

2017 – 2018 batch children from Udavi had a get-together. We’ve planned to meet them and have a conversation on how STEM land was useful for them and what they feel about STEM land. Children were in their summer holidays and organized a get together themselves. We all felt happy to see them back. We started the conversation by asking them “What do you remember or miss about STEM land and how is it used?” Read more

 

 

STEM Land in Aikiyam

Pratap and Murali started supporting Saravanan in initiating a STEM Center in Aikiyam School. Following are some updates from Aikiyam:


STEM Land in Thamarai

There were around 20 kids from 6th std above. Thamarai facilitators said that they wanted to teach mathematics using materials. To start with basics we used Dienes block to visualize the arithmetic operations. Children learnt about cube, rod and plate. I wrote the numbers and the operator on the board and asked children to find the answer using Dienes block. Children were split into four teams and worked as a team. Facilitators also learnt along with the children. Through this, children got clarity of how carry over works and why do we carry over and borrow.

STEM Land Projects at Auroville Schools

As most of the students were new to electronics, they were asked to build a simple battery holder
( Aravind Gupta Toys) and to measure the voltage from the battery using the multimeter. They were given different batteries and were asked to measure the voltage by keeping them in series. They were able to notice the change in voltages in different batteries and enjoyed the process. The students helped each other by sharing their knowledge with their younger buddies and we were able to see the Peer Learning build up. At the end of the day, they were able to learn about voltage, LED, copper, multimeters, and make the LED glow. Read more

What’sUp Integers

With the many STEM lands coming up we felt that Thematic Weeks across schools could be interesting for children to learn from each other across schools. We have started to learn and discover the different ways of how Integers can be looked at. Children can come up with projects, stories, modules explaining the same with a short 3 to 4mins This event starts on the 20/08/2019 and comes to close 31/08/2019. Both schools should interchange videos among them. Read more.

Automatic street light using LDR

While preparing the electronics class, we took “Automatic street light using LDR” as the circuit, where  “LED” turns ON in dark and turns OFF in bright place automatically. After giving the circuit connection, the LED didn’t turn OFF when it was bright. So we started analyzing the circuit, then we found out that, the R1 resistor was low when compared to the resistance of the LDR under the brightness. Read more

Sharing Knowledge across grades

6th-grade children are studying photosynthesis which is one of the topics in the EVS chapter. Meanwhile, 7th-grade children have been doing a model of a plant cell using clay under the guidance of Vasanthraj. Since now they have completed their model, they wanted to show and demonstrate it to the other grades. When they came to present to 6th grade, we noticed that we are in sync. Photosynthesis is related to plant cell, Thus the 6th graders find it very much useful in what they are studying and asked a few questions/doubts to the 7th grade and they answer their question. Inter-grade education like these is highly appreciated by teachers and students as well. Read more

Monthly Progress card for School Software

We created a 2nd version of the school software to make and assess the plan for children in Isai Ambalam School. Teachers were writing the monthly progress card by hand. We made this feature so that teachers can use the planning software and make the progress card. It would be useful to copy the progress card for multiple children and make changes that would save time. It helps to keep track and view the previous month’s progress card. Read more

 

Atrei Visit

Atrei is a geology scientist, who is our main support in Asha Bangalore. She had visited Udavi and Isai Ambalam school STEM Land. Later she had interacted with the youths that work in STEM Land. During the interaction, the youth had come up with a few questions related to geology. There was also a Judo demonstration by the Isai Ambalam School children. Atrei has a black belt in karate.

Support A Child Program 

In partnership with Asha for Education we have set up a Support a child program for Isai Ambalam School. The support of Rs.11,000/year covered some of the running expenses of the school including teacher’s salaries; nutrition; activities in sports, music, swimming, and STEM land activities. Last year we successfully found support for all children at the school by the end of the schooling year. This year the strength of the school has increased to 154 and the third phase is in progress.. A positive development  that we see this year is some of the parents are putting in funds to collectively support some children themselves.

Contributions towards STEM land can be directed towards
Auroville Unity Fund
with a note for STEM land and mail it to
Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan,
STEM land Udavi School, Auroville,
Edayanchavadi, Tamil Nadu – 605101
All donations are 100% tax-deductible in India.

www.auraauro.com

 

Continue reading “STEM Land Newsletter Volume-7, Jun ’19-Sep’19”

Puzzle Solution Box-Isai STEM Land

~Sandhiya

In udavi each week a mathematical Puzzle is placed on the stem land notice board, where the interested students who wants to solve the puzzle writes the answer and drops the answer in the solution Box.

In this method, we implemented in all stem land. From this week onwards, In isai ambalam we  also started this method.

   

 

Independance Day Celebration Aug 15th @ Isai Ambalam School

~Saranya & Poovizhi

On India’s 73rd Independence Day, 15 August 2019, children from Isai  Ambalam school celebrated the Independence day with bonfire, run , flag hoisting and cultural events.

We started our day at 5:00 am with bonfire and meditation for an hour in Matrimandir amphitheater at Auroville.

Students started their run from Auroville Matrimandir went across
Auroville communities, villages and reached the school. They covered around 7.5 km and the STEM land
team and teachers at the school followed and encouraged children to complete the run. This video documents the run.

Friday session with STEMLand scaling group – dienes blocks

~Sundar

On 2019/10/03 we had the second meet with the Scaling group. More information on the first meet can be found at : Link

This time Abilash started by sharing what he did in Auroville schools : A simple way to explain how a DC  motor works.

Next as a team we did simple calculations of how addition and subtraction work with carry (Exchanging a rod for 10 units and vice versa or a plate for 10 rods) using the dienes blocks, and later moved to multiplication (Area story) and division with some common misconceptions children have.

 

Intern ship at STEM land

Pratap.G

Three students from college came to STEM land for intern-ship for two weeks  to learn programming in Scratch. We have asked them to create some project in scratch. They have created some videos projects on addition ,fraction, number line, multiplication, representing and arranging  ascending order and descending order with squares. People from STEM land took Steward ship for new emergence for them . They took few tools from that session for them like stand , fear,  deep listening and back ground conversation , four profile , CFSR  sheet.

Reflection of the interns

Here are the list of  projects that they made in scratch.

 

Integral learning-Whatup’s Integers

~Sandhiya

We have started to learn and discover the different ways of how Integers can be looked at.
Following are some ideas children can work on, It is totally up to the students on what they would like to build.

  1. To be able to tell stories of +, -, *, /
  2. To know different stories with Othello ++,+-,-+,– and link it with multiplication
  3. To be able to determine angles 180-theta and 360 – theta
  4. To be able to know special integers (Pythagorean triples)
  5. To be able to show a number on the number line
  6. Be able to write a scratch program to show the target game
  7. Using Ganit mala be able to explain how to get to the target.
  8. To be able to divide integers to get a fraction
  9. To know repeated addition is multiplication
  10. To know repeated multiplication is powers
  11. Squares and cubes of integers

Children can come up with projects, stories, modules explaining the same with a short 3 to 4mins videos.

This event starts on the 20/08/2019 and comes to a close 31/08/2019.

In Isai Ambalam, 7th -grade students taught the Integers addition, subtraction using a Number line, Othello, Gaint mala and also explained the addition and subtraction using the staircase to 5th-grade.

 

Vasanth and Sandhiya supported the children to share their learning.

    

In 7th-grade, each person took 2 children and explained the integers addition and subtraction. 5th- grade was keep asking the question and learned the integers using the math materials.

5th-grade students wrote the English scripts about what they learned in Integers and get corrected with Nirmala, and shared the integers with our classmates.

 

Cast Metal Brain Teasers Puzzles

~Sandhiya, Arun

In STEMland as one of the activity, children were asked to solve metal puzzles. The activity was fun. 3rd-grade children were interested and curious to solve these puzzles. There were divided into 8 groups, 2 children in each. The task was to solve the puzzles within the given time.

 

Children were engaged and curious about the task was given to them. After finishing their task, they supported each other. They also shared the puzzles they were able to solve to others.

STEMland inauguration

-Arun, Saranya

STEMland was offered a new space in Udavi. All of us  were busyin setting up Stemland for a couple of weeks.Especially, Saranya who took the lead for setting up the place . Now we have a bigger space and  have a separate room for electronics.

A lot of thought was put into how the space should be organized and some construction and repair was needed. This was handled by professionals and organizing the space was up to us. Saranya made a 3D model of the space and were materials should come. Everything was planned before the move, we needed no after thoughts.

2D view of STEMland
3D view of STEMland

It was exciting for all of us including the children as they were going to use the space. Children were busy making projects to present  for the inauguration. They were making projects in scratch, electronics, geogebra, mindstorms, etc.

Participation of the children of Isaiambalam :

Children of Isaiamabalam were asked to participate in the event. They were given separate stalls to demonstrate their projects. Most of their projects were based on science and physics.

Preparation for the event:
Children and STEMland teachers decorated the place. Balloons were tied up and colourful Kolams were drawn by the elder children.  A symbol of The Mother that was decorated with flowers added beauty to the event.

Mother symbol decorated with flowers
Making kolam

During the event:

Teachers of Stemland each shared an aspect of stemland which was followed by lighting up of candles (Kuthu vilaku).

Pratap giving opening speech
Sundar giving his speech
Anitha lighting up the candle. Aruljothi (Tamil teacher of Udavi), Shankar (Principal of Aikiyam) and Davaselvy (Principal of Udavi) in the background
Anupama adding more light
Shalini sharing her experience in STEMland
Pavithra sharing her experience in STEMland

Two children from 10th grade Udavi also shared their experiences in STEMland.

Projects demo:

Children had different stalls set up with theirbprojects. Teachers from Auroville and outreach schools, youths, children of Aikiyam school and many more guests were invited to interact with children.

Children were excited to show their projects. A child demonstrated how different frequencies can be heard by us. Games and puzzles were also displayed by the younger children. Naveen had a project on spray painting and children explained the physics behind it.

Aikiyam children trying out cast puzzle
Exploring..
An Aikiyam teacher playing Abacon with 7th grade children
Printing using 3D printer
Spray painting demo
Making art using spray paint
Art of two hands
Asia map presented by 7th grade children Isaiamabalam

 

Model of a plant cell
Magic jug: pressure model
Mindstorm
Dinosor mindstorm
Voting questions
Electronic voting machine
Children of Udavi and Aikiyam playing games
Shankar (White shirt) principal of Aikiyam viewing projects
Tamil game set up by Isaiambalam children
Hearing different frequencies
Children enjoying snack (Samosa)

 

Number line scratch project.

Pratap

Children in 8th were doing rational numbers and they wanted to build a project to demonstrate their learning . They have build a project in number line. This scratch program shows how to find the fraction in a number line. The  numerator is ( a  random number is asked from the user. The program chooses a number 0 to  3 x the user  number ) and the numerator is also generated  randomly (2 – 10).  The user needs to find the answer for the question. The user needs to give to a value for numerator and a value for the denominator.