Hackathon workshop on Electronics

~ Mathegramming team, Sundaresan, Sharmila, Poonguzhali, Jayabharathi, Ajay, Sri Bhavani, Duraisamy, Choudery

Learn the principles of Electronic and critical components

The core values of Mathegramming Academy are responsibility,equality,and courage to create.We (Mathegramming team) wanted Children to connect electronics to the world around them and they will relate Electronics to the Mathematics they have been learning.

Our team wanted to have the following shifts:

  • From Theory to Hands-On Practice
  • From classroom Learning to Real-World Exploration
  • From Confusion to Clarity in Learning
  • Moving from Being scared to trying new things to embracing new learning
  • From Disempowering isms like classism, groupism and genderism to equality and creative learning together

The Mathegramming Hackathon was set up to encourage creativity and learning at every stage. We conducted the workshop for around 40 children and the children were from different schools. Our team mixed the children from different schools. So that children got different perspectives, encouraging working together, increased their communicative skills.

We started the day with an reminder about our Stand and fears, by knowing what I stand for or care about I can transcend my fears and work at their full potential.

We talked about the difficulty in learning electronics

  • it is something we can see the impact of, but cannot see directly.
  • Most the terms are known but the distinction is unclear e.g. the power has come, is there voltage, is there current. and all used as synonyms. Related to this there are too many units that appear unrelated.
  • You can go over a large range of values – kilo ohms, to micro ampheres and requires some grounding in Engineering units and some Mathematics.

Then we dived into Electronics, by using the minimum mathematics of Multiplication and two hidden division stories. Using this simple idea, we introduced how to calculate power, current, Voltage, Charge, Energy. We also used only a few units for these that allows children to correlate between the quantities. We then applied this to our real life of understanding how much energy we consume. In time we analyzed how much energy would have been used to do the workshop itself on backup power and how much battery would have been used.

For resistance we use the concept of body resistance students and knew about their actual body resistance using multimeter with that they knew current and resistance were inversely proportional to each other and students also estimated that at what voltage they would get shock. Students checked if it is possible to light an LED through their body resistance (can you?) and also learned the importance of resistor in series with the LEDs.

From the Water Tank analogy students knew about the concept of voltage, current, resistance and energy. We introduced about the precautions while using multimeter for safety purpose. Students knew about how to use the multimeter to measure voltage, current, resistance and how to check the connectivity in the circuit. Students designed their own circuit for the required current flow in the circuit.

We introduced about the battery, resistor, LED, variable resistor, capacitor and also their symbols with that students knew about the symbols of the components.So,that they able to draw the circuit diagram and we showed the sensor(LDR) by showing the demo how it worked students gave different perspective how to use LDR for their circuit.Capacitor as a bucket if a battery is like a reservoir of charge by worked in it. Students knew that more the capacity in the capacitor more the charge it can hold and they saw the working of capacitor by charging using the battery and discharging using the LED.

When the challenges were allocated for each team I saw the enthusiasm with which children learn with engagement, We also saw team work worked well with different school students and each students shared their perspective and some students convenience why their perspective of approaching the problem was correct and some students struggled to understand and hesitated to do the task. students from different schools didn’t isolate themselves stepped up for their new friends worked as a team and got their output from that I saw the Leadership quality in that student and I saw a good team work among the students.

After the workshop came to an end students shared their learnings in the workshop and also shared what they learned about themselves in the workshop by doing the workshop I realised that we (Mathegramming team) added something useful to their life. We had many stdents who had not registered beforehand and our colleagues stepped up for us and supported us in organising the event and I saw the quality of care and that moment brought every one together.

Some of the reflections from our mentors in the workshop:

My name is Sundaresan,I stand for happiness and courage for myself and for others. While working with new children at the hackathon, I learned how to approach them effectively. I realized that I shouldn’t guide them with only wanting to win, but rather focus on their learning new skills and knowledge that will benefit in their future. I was impressed to see how they weren’t struggling with the calculation of power consumption of fans and lights, which showed me their strength in mathematics. Each child in my group has different talents: one excels in Scratch programming beyond my expectations, while another explains the project very well. Reflecting on this event, I recognized what I missed in my own childhood.

My name is Sharmila. I stand for courage and patience for myself and others. This electronic hackathon gave me a chance to contribute my knowledge to students regarding electronics. Students were excited and curious to know about electronics and how they are used in our daily lives. During the hackathon, the students quickly mingled with each other. They also shared their thoughts in the group while working on the tasks that we gave them. The hackathon showcased the values of equality, responsibility, and the courage to create. It demonstrated the transition from individual to group learning, with strong communication between mentors and mentees. Overall, the event emphasized the importance of electronics and their usage in our daily life.

My name is Poonguzhali I stand for courage for myself and others. I could see the values of STEM Land throughout the tournament: Equality responsibility and courage to create. I could see individual learning to group learning. There was good communication between the children and facilitators. We were breaking silos. The children were able to connect real-time examples with the electronic concepts.  I learned some basic electronics concepts from this workshop. It stimulated my interest to learn even more in the future. I felt excited throughout the event.

My name is Jayabharathi, I stand for Equality for myself and for others. The electronics hackathon helped me contribute my knowledge to the children. I was able to see the team work and the coordination among the children of different organizations. It helped me to bring out my universal values (care and confidence) into action. The curiosity of the children after each step of the experiments it helped me to develop my skills to teach them in a simplified manner. Apart from the technical part, children were able to mingle with each other very easily and they were able to help each other. The children were encouraging each other when other teams won the prize. I noticed that they were fostering leadership and i would also practice the same. This hackathon gave me an exposure to experience unity and curiosity with the team members as well as the children.

My name is Ajay, and I stand for love, happiness, and self-awareness for myself and others. My experience at the electronics hackathon with children was amazing. Initially, they learnt about themselves and then moved into the concept of energy consumption. They were able to calculate how much energy they used for the workshop and learnt about units of power, energy, current, and voltage in a different way. It turned into a tournament at the end. I found the part was finding out the body resistance of each member using a multimeter very interesting. As a team, we helped each other and took responsibility to claim the first prize for our team of children. We also assisted other teams’ children to complete their tasks so they could understand, what I learnt I have shared it with others.

My name is Sri Bhavani. I stand for Love and Equality for myself and others. In this Hackathon, our team created an opportunity for the children to work with other school children to get the essence of team work to achieve the goals. My favorite part in this event was that one representative was requested to share their learning to represent their team at random. In this, team members encouraged the team representative to share their team learnings. Children were able to notice their fears during presentation as well as competition, then they were also be able to still themselves to act from their values. Overall, children as well as facilitators enjoyed the event and Mathegramming team, all facilitators, and students acted from their full potential to make this event happen.

My name is Duraisamy, I stand for Dignity, wisdom and freedom for myself and others. Mentoring kids about electronics and how they’re part of everyday life is something new for them. Understanding the different parts and symbols is a first step. It helps them see how things work and sparks their curiosity to learn more. Explaining electronics to kids in simple terms not only helps them understand the world around them but also encourages them to explore and ask questions. It’s important to lay a basic foundation that they can build upon as they grow, fostering a lifelong interest in learning and discovery.

My name is Choudery. I stand for justice and equality for my self and others. In the electronics tournament I just came to have a look how children were doing. Then I sat with a team at random. I have noticed children are curious to learn electronics and doing their tasks one by one. Then I start to teach a child and explain how seven segment display works. One child understood the logic behind the seven-segment display and started to do it by own. This made the other children in the team to curious. The children came to me and ask how to do. Then I ask the children to ask the child who was doing it. The team them learned from him. Here I noticed the curiosity of learning, peer learning and teamwork. This electronic workshop and tournament really helpful for children to have more ideas and thoughts about how the real world working with electronics.