Security system for Old Puzzle Solution Box


Bharani from 9th grade has set an emergency alarm system in old puzzle solution box which gives a buzzer sound if someone opens the box.This prevents student from opening the box to see others answers.He used few materials like Battery,Buzzer,wires and clip.






The principle of this alarm is very simple.when someone opens the solution box ,the needle separating the clip is released , and the clip makes a closed circuit for the current flow which makes a sound.And also Bharani presented his project to his classmates and younger children in ISMART class. And students also tested his project.

Triangle inequality rule

We were working with area and construction of triangles with the 6th graders in Isaiambalam school initially children started to construct a triangle with compass on their note books. Then to make things a little interesting children were asked how they would do it in scratch.

They initially started to draw three sides and found out that is was only possible to do, when the user gave three sides and two angles. Then one of then came up with using the arc function. He first drew the base, then two circles with the radius as the other two sides. Now he got the intersection point,  by this time I was confused as of how to get the third point in scratch. The solution was tracing the distance from one circles center to the other circles circumference and when they meet to set a variable to the x and y location and that did it.

Link to scratch code : link to program

More work done by children at Isaiambalam School :

Shapes and angles with 5th grade



Scratch Course for Sunflower team from Rajashtan


Tamara Moss visited our STEM land in February. She is running Sunflower Learning C enter in Rajashtan. When she visited STEM land she was inspired by children’s projects in scratch. She wanted their children from SLC also want to learn scratch programming. There were 3 teachers and one student  from Rajashtan. STEM land facilitators, two of us (Saranya and Muralidharan).

Day 1 :

We started with the tasks. First, we want them to understand about scratch, so we asked them to drag the code and click on now you say what is happening?. It was like conversation then they got whatever the command that they are dragging the sprite is doing it. Finally, they found that. Then we gave the first task to tell a story.

Here is the outcome which we got from them.

Day 2:

The task 2 was interacting with computer by asking questions (general knowledge question). We explained what we are going to do, but we didn’t do it. We asked them  to try. When they struggled we helped them.

Here is the outcome which we received from them.

Day 3:

We want to make different shapes which are related to Mathematics. This task also we didn’t do it. We want them to think about it and we got their suggestion of how to draw a circle. Before this we explained about all the blocks in the scratch. Then we showed the demo of how to draw a circle by using that they played a lot also they got those different shapes.

Here is the outcome of this task.

Day 4:

It was continuing the last session. When they completed all the shapes we asked them to use the control function to repeat the shapes. They did that task also they got different Mandala’s. It was very nice.

Here is the outcome of this task.

Day 5:

We gave Maze game task to them. Before  doing, we explained about backdrops and filling colour in the backdrops also we  a gave small demo to make a Maze game. They were very excited to make maze game. Finally, they did the maze game also they have used scores. They learnt to use data blocks in the scratch.

Here is the outcome of this task.

Day 6:

We continued with Maze game to add life in their game. This was the last task for them. They did the life by using data blocks. Then we told them how to use write expression, arc sprite and why it is being used. We asked them use hep function to get more clarity on what they have learned. It is like tutorials. Also we had 15 min questions for clarity.

Here is their feedback for the scratch course.

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Mindstrom Guitar by children


Last week children started to work on Mindstrom. Children from 9th grade his name is Diva he made Guitar using Mindstrom. Children from 7th grade they inspired by Diva they also started working on Mindstrom.

Radical Transformational Leadership: What does this imply? Guest Speaker: Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan

   02-05-19 Radical Transformational Leadership : What does this     imply?Guest Speaker: Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan

Audio Link:


Conscious Business – Conscious Learning

Join us for a conversation with Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan, who received his PhD in Electronics from Columbia University in New York City. He is motivated by his growth as a human being and supporting the same in others. He believes that this can be achieved by deep meaningful educational experiences for both facilitators and children in the schools, at STEM Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) centers and Aura Auro Design, a technology business he coordinates.

Sanjeev will share how he invests in developing skills, competencies and inner capacity. He finds these practical, effective and a time saver. Offering and attending courses through technology experts improves skills; applying in contexts of different projects helps improve our competency and the stewardship tools as well as meditation helps us ground ourselves and be present in what we do.

He shares how the tools and templates for radical transformational leadership have allowed the work they do with the children to be profound; and, at the same time, supportive of the growth of the team members, enabling them to be intensely engaged in the technology. Working with children gives meaning to what they do and be more responsible. Similarly, interacting with a high quality team at Aura helps us reflect on how to do our technology job well and reflects on how we facilitate or teach.

Sanjeev says that true creativity comes from a deep space of oneness and knowing that creates breakthroughs not possible from linear thinking. We always think of creativity as a mental function, but find its more the heart that yearns to make something possible and then the brain kicks in!

Seventeenth Episode: Guest in the 2nd segment : Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan

Bio:Dr. Sanjeev Ranganathan received his PhD from Columbia University in Electronics. He is the recipient of the Lewis Winner award for best paper at ISSCC. He also volunteered for Asha for Education in various capacities and interacted with over a 100 NGOs in India working on education. He has worked at Silicon Labs, NXP, ST-Ericsson, Aura Semiconductor and has built chips used by over a billion people.Sanjeev is passionate about developing critical thinking skills with children and in helping them learn and connect with their deepest self.

Since Jun 2013 he has been working with children in Udavi School and Isai Ambalam School, both outreach schools of Auroville. In Jan 2015 he founded Aura Auro Design (AAD) along with engineering graduates in and around Auroville and in Sep 2015 with them established STEM Land (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics Land) a space of learning for children and adults. STEM land-AAD build skills, competence and inner capacity in youth to be contributing members of the community and society as a whole. He is also the executive of the Isai Ambalam school. His contact information is: and +91 8940262969.


Puzzle Solution Box

~Saranya, Murali, Abilash

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. The Solution box which they have been using was made of cardboard,that was pretty weak and did not have a Lock on it.The Students were worrying that the answers which they drop into the box may get spread among the others and wanted a Permanent solution where their answers were safe.


So we(Saranya,Muruli,Abilash) planned of making a Stronger Solution Box. So we cut out the plywoods into the measured size and started nailing it. Seeing the half Solution box being ready, the students showed their interest by asking us if any help can be done by them.As still the Box was not completely ready and the hinges and latch needs to be fixed.We gave the remaining work that needs to be done to them.Though they were struggling a bit at the beginning ,soon they competed their work.And guess what….The Solution box was ready.

Session with Heidi Watts on Research

Aura Auro team, Kavitha and Nirmala from Isai Ambalam had a session with Heidi_Watts   on research in the i-SMART class room.

We started the session with what we wanted to learn. Then we looked at kinds of research as following

Qualitative research – Describe more to prove

  • Action research – making a change
  • Participatory action research – I am part of it and effecting the outcome and adding myself
  • ethnographic research – culture and forms

Quantitative research – Numbers and phenomenon. Prove again and again and say that it works. More about measuring.

  • Statistics
  • Bell curve – Large number  of people (10% needs a large number)

Mixed methods – Some description and some measurements survey, ask the same question in many different ways.

Methods – to be able to use more than one method in a research

Case study/studies – look for one thing; e.g one classroom, one set of children, one child (who is very reluctant and his progress through the term)

Formal observations – check list

Informal observations – observe every day at a particular time

Field notes – taken at class then and there

Journals – to think about the session and reflect later

Interviews, individual and group – one on one with child or with a group

Video and audio tapes – with video on needs to be careful as it changes the way one acts in from of cameras, with audios on can review at a later time.

Surveys –  Has sample of different sources and structures in comparison e.g rural/urban, young/old, men/women,

Then we had a look at the work done in kindergarten and how it can be considered a research.

Reflections of STEM Land team of the year 2018-2019

Here are the collated reflections for 2018.


2018 had been a year of vast experience.


Working on Layout was a challenge. There was not much documentation. I first worked with magic (Layout suite) and then worked with a professional software called SKILL. Conducting courses on layout was challenging and a big learning curve.

I also worked on Callisto a project that eventually got dropped which was sad after we spent nights on it. But it gave a different experience to handle a hardware board and GUIs.

Being part of the Zeus team at the end of the year is giving me more vital experience in what it takes to deliver a professional software and to interact with professionals in different part of the country and world. I learnt not to miss out something. I worked in Python. I always enjoyed working in Python. I learnt to be more rigorous with managing software with Git and learnt team work. I have delivered before but I haven’t worked much in GUIs.

Learnt more about file processing through Hercules project.


I took initiatives to hold a learning workshop for the Teachers in Auroville along with Monica. Working with her gave an experience of rigor joy and sense of wholeness in what I do.

I also delivered as a PC in Learning Network, Isaimbalam school and continued practice in STEMland. Being a PC is huge learning. To understand the crowd is a rich experience.

I felt we became healthy as a team when we had team sports and movies on Saturdays.


We presented about STEM land to lot of people this year. It helped me to interact with people.

We presented our paper in Mumbai in the beginning of the year in EPISTEM7. We got a lot of contacts and learnt how other people do research in Education.

Wrote my first paper on Deep learning. I learnt to write a research paper and learnt a lot how people perceive if we send something.

Salem conference was a rich experience listening to principals of different school sharing their experiences with children. I was first nervous seeing people giving attention to what I have to say. Identifying my fear helped to continue the presentation.


When looking back the whole year now, I could see what all I learnt and what all I did well and didn’t do well. I realize I have done so many things like teaching, working, learning, planning, organizing, travelling, taking accountability and responsibility, reading(a little), reflecting, attending workshops and courses. I couldn’t imagine that I have done so many things in one year. Its good to work on many different things and learn many different domains and aspects.
I have realized that I can only learn and grow when I stretch beyond my comfort zone. STEMland – AAD is such place for me to learn and come out of my comfort zone and work with others. Peer learning doesn’t happen in most organizations, I can see it here. Taking up responsibility and courage to create are the two things I feel happy about this year.


The year 2018 was a good year for me. I have grown in many areas. I am able to notice my growth as a human being as a teacher and as an engineer. This year I had taken responsibilities which I had never thought of and I was able to do my best…
I never ever thought of being a teacher when I grew up, but now I think there is no other job as satisfying as a teacher. You are at a place of most potential (the children) where your actions can make a huge change in the society. This year was the year I learned the most in my life and I have used my learning and put it in my actions.


Last year starting we had chosen what I wanted to do in STEM land. I wanted to do EBD’s (Education by Design projects) with the children and also document them properly every term. I was able document all the EBD and also I also had a chance to read the EBD book and learn the steps that involved to do a EBD. Having read the book I make a EBD format and a presentation which helps the new teachers to start doing EBD. In terms of working with the children I concentrated on the outcomes that children acquire while doing a EBD. I also worked on building a inverter and Mindstorm Robot with the children. In term of learning and doing research I realized how difficult it is to do research and to write a paper. I also learned that the format to write a paper and how to start and end a paper. I learned to link the abstract and to the conclusion and base the paper to give details related clearly to the abstract. Being part of STEM Land I had an opportunity to do research and to present it in front of the teachers and researchers at the conference. I also got opportunity to interact with these people at the conference.  Attending the SFNE work shop  as a PC I took responsibility of my life and made choices to do what I want do in my life. I am still learning SKILL program from my team members. Doing layout is really something new for me. Being part of STEM land I don’t grow only my skill but also my Competency, Inner Capacity and to contribute to others growth.



Before I came to STEM land, I wanted to learn programming and robotics for 3 months, but was unclear of what is practical use learning this will be, because of this I always feel unhappy, at loss and unstable mind. This feeling demotivated me and I had not clear on what I am becoming.

After I came to STEM land, I started working on Mindstorm robots, though did not complete it fully. Then with the other youth I Istarted going to school, it was a new experience for me working kids on EBD (Education by design) and enjoyed it. It reminded me of my childhood, especially when I was with the young children in Isai Ambalam school (my mentor asked me to work with 1st grade children in Isai Ambalam and 10th grade children in Udavi). Then got an opportunity to handle class for maths 1st grade. I saw myself in the children, then I start feeling equality by seeing all characteristics in children that resemble me.

Then I got chance to attend Vipassana meditation course. It helped me become patient, before that I can’t wait in place even I committed to wait for someone and I don’t like if someone spoke to me disrespectfully. After it I realized I was patient even children not obeying and disturbing.

But having done a Masters in Electronics I still wondered what I was going to for my professional life and I got afraid, then I started preparing for interviews and I got selected for a job in Chennai. I was confused about what am I going to do in my life even after got selected for interview, because even getting the job still made me feel unhappy, at a loss. I decided to stay in STEM land where I can explore myself mentally and stabilize my mind.

Then I attended Amma appa program in that I learned about integrity, but I still felt I was missing something important. I applied integrity tool on project I worked (school software), which help me look problem clearly and solve it.

After quarterly exam, my mentor got little busy at work and I was asked to handle a few classes myself. I found it difficult to handle a class myself, then I realized problem was accountability I needed to be clear what need to be done by me. In that month, I attended stewardship workshop in which I distinguished accountability and responsibility. Then I realized responsibility is 100% accountability and is effective.

I started taking 100% accountability on work, which help me to handle entire class and think about problem and it solution.

Even using integrity and 100% accountability on professional and personal life, I still felt I was missing something important. Finally I found it in the third session of stewardship when I heard Sanjeev state his stand  “I stand for self-awareness for myself and others”. The word “Self-aware” was what I was missing. After that I changed my standard form “Equality and wisdom” to “Self-awareness and Equality”. I started noticing my gap and took actions to fix it.

Finally I have found my stand and I have become brave to face any situations with a stable mind.


My name is Saranya I  stand for unconditional love, Happiness and perseverance for myself and for others. When I started working @ STEM land I did not like mathematics. I saw children @ Isai and Udavi, they were using the material and they were learning mathematical concepts. During my school or college days I was unable to notice my gaps, but now I am able to notice my gaps in mathematics. For this I have used stewardship tool in my real life. Now I like mathematics because of the way I am learning. With that interest I am taking mathematics class for children (@Isai-2nd grade and @Udavi-8th-9th grade).

I have attended Ignite video challenge course before attending this course I was not interested in recording a video of mine. But I was curious to learn what it is. Somehow I started the course then it gave me a big picture of that course also she gave tips and prompt for everyday. I have used her tips then I recorded lot of video of mine. Now the fear gone. This is an example for when I came out from my fear of recording a video of mine.

Also I noticed another thing (i.e) before going to Vippasana I had a different life. After attended a course I noticed I had been carrying so much baggage. I used to get angry for unnecessary things then I told myself everything is impermanent this will also change.

This year I learnt a lot about myself from Stewardship session. There were many tools I have used only a few tools. I have summarized what I have learnt through these sessions.

Reflections from the session:

While using these tool in my real life these tool helped me a lot. For e.g: It helped me to come out from my assumptions and interpretations. At work place committed request tool helped me to come out from feeling of guilty also it gave me a clear picture of what I am going to do in future.

I acknowledge Sanjeev for supporting me to attend the Stage 1 stewardship workshop. I also  acknowledge Sanjeev for to put me in a place where I can grow and explore myself.


The year 2018-2019, has given me the space to self-access a lot with the tools I have learnt and how to guide myself towards building up my strengths. Be able to support others on what I have learnt, keep work flow available to all with cloud support. Learned Skill and Layout basics. Visualize shifts on day to day activities. Became a lot grounded on life and gave importance towards doing things that makes myself and the atmosphere around joyful.

-Naveen Kumar