Have you ever dreamt of choosing a career as being a Chef when you grow up, or for that reason an engineer, or an artist, or a trekking instructor , or anybody that you wish to become.
What would be the best way to learn the skills, needed to become what you wish to become?
If you plan to become a chef, would it be getting some tips on cooking, or by reading articles / instructions on cooking from a cookery book, or by watching a video on cooking , getting somebody to explain the details to cook , observing somebody cooking , or cooking a dish yourself using the various options available .
Obviously when you cook yourself you get to learn through your mistakes, you understand when and where things are going wrong, and you can see the results for yourself. When you take part in a group competition along with your team members you also develop other skills like working as a team i.e. Team Player, Listening Skills , Problem solving skills , decision making ability , creativity , focus factor , Following orders , Planning , Delegating , Time management , Good communication skills , Risk taking ability , Leadership development and learning by doing . All these are known as soft skills which are very important in today’s competitive environment to stay ahead of the competition.
When you learn things by using real life problems and try to solve them by using innovative solutions , The Experience you get by using your thoughts and skills to address the problem stays with you for a long time if not for your whole life .
What is STEM Based Education :
STEM refers to learning the four subjects of “ Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths” taught to students as combined subjects through an inter disciplinary approach , relating to real life situations, rather than as separate subjects taught in isolation which is currently the norm In schools .
STEM Education can also be used to teach other subjects like History , Geography , Civics, Politics, Languages etc by using real life situations for better Conceptual clarity
Why is the need for stem education?
There is a huge requirement for Graduates in these four subjects and the number of job creation in these sectors is only going to increase whereas the no of students who are passing out with the required skills and interest levels Is decreasing.
There will be a huge requirement for students who have maths and science skills in jobs that will be created in the 21st century.
As per the National science education council the need for these skills will be as high as 80% in the future jobs that are being created .
How can we bridge this gap:
Schools can build interest in students from a young age by Introducing STEM based Education from the preliminary level and to be maintained at all levels of education right up to the College Level. This will Help develop curiosity in the minds of the Kids , will give boost to their imagination and creativity by helping them to think out of the box , Develop their confidence levels and their personality and help them with developing problem solving skills , helping children learn through team work , and use their problem solving skills to solve real life problems . We need to move away from the exam focused mentality and make education more focused on developing and nurturing their creativity and Imagination. This is where organizations providing training in STEM related education come into effect. By coordinating with Schools and other institutions they can develop STEM based learning in Children . Concepts that the kids can learn through STEM based education are concepts like functioning and usage of of wheels, gears, machines and mechanisms, 3D Printing , through Tinkering Labs, Maker spaces , Digital Science Labs .
Below are some of the organizations providing STEM based Education in India .
India Stem Foundation : https://indiastemfoundation.org is a not for Profit Organization working since 2006 , and their efforts have been dedicated to popularize STEM education in India through hands on Robotics initiatives like establishing robotics labs , workshops , competitive events , teachers training and many more.
Edutech India : www.edutechindia.com
Edutech india provides a hands on exploratory learning experience to the students by teaching STEM Education through ROBOTICS..
Creya Learning : www.creyalearning.com
Creya is an innovative education company focused on equipping children with skills, literacies , competencies and the attitude needed to thrive in the dynamic world of the 21st century.
STEM Champ: www.stemchamp.com
is an international Stem Education Improvement body that provides highly effective hands on Curriculum and Professional Development .
Vidya robotics : www.vidyarobotics.com
Vidya robotics is a team of passionate electronic engineers driven by a strong desire to spread electronics and programming education to the society.
Box of Science : https://boxofscience.com
Established in the year 2012, Box of Science is the leading manufacturer and service provider of Science Project Kit , Educational Toys and Much more , solar car and wind energy Kit
Exciting Science : www.excitingscience.org
The Exciting Science Group (ESG) comprises of scientists from two of Pune’s best research institutions NCL and IISER Pune . The program has been formed to convey the excitement of science and technology to school students in an easy manner. The motivation behind the program is to attract the brightest talent from the next generation towards careers in science and technology , since it will be these students who will drive tomorrows science and innovation based economy .
Nishiganda Palshikar is a passionate aabout coding to teach technology to the young inquisitive minds . Programitra is an initiative aimed at developing problem solving and logical thinking skills in school children through computer and robot programming to school children .
Robolab Technologies : https://www.robolab.in
Robolab is a venture by Graduates from the prestigious COEP in association with BHAU institute of Innovation, Entreprenurship and Leadership , the incubation center of COEP. They describe themselves as the perfect platform to explore , learn and build technological ideas at the schools or institutions .
EduPrime : www.eduprime.com
Eduprime was established with a focus to provide education in PRIME ( Physics, Robotics , Information Technology ,Maths and Engineering ) to school students spanned across 7 levels to impart skills such as problem solving and analytical thinking while enhancing creative and combinational thinking of the child .
Bringle uses advance technology to make learning interesting and easier .They provide skill development programs , developed through years of research and feedback such as hard skills , soft skills, and life skills which improves creative thinking , logical thinking , decision making ability , as well as benefits that can be noticed in daily life.
Skillovate : https://skillovate.com
Skillovate is an IIT /IIM initiative to skill kids through Computer science , having a unique way to offer the child the relevant skills and prepare them for a better future . Their mission is to reduce the skill gap that is not being catered to by the present learning system .
Smartivity : https://www.smartivity.in
Do it yourself , science , arts and craft kits for children designed to enhance , creative , practical and analytical intelligence .Smartivity designs STEM based activity boxes , Augmented Reality Learning products , and internet connected toys for kids aged 3 to 12 years .
Rocketeers is a one stop , technology enabled platform for anybody to become a rocket scientist or satellite builder of tomorrow.
Einstein box: www.einsteinbox.in
India’s No 1 early learning subscription box created by parents and loved by kids for ages 1 to 6 years.
Simulanis is india’s leading Augment Realty (AR) , Mixed Realty , and Virtual Realty company that offers innovative visualization products for the education , learning and skilling domains.
Respire Experiential Learning : www.respiregroup.com
At Respire is focused to make foundation level education more application and experience based focusing on methods like DIY kits and hands on learning which are the most optimum methods for Experiential Learning as children begin to apply what they learn, there will be more doers , more scientists, more mathematicians , and biologists form the third world who will do outstanding work in their chosen fields .
India’s no 1 syllabus based educational activity box that makes studies interesting for LKG to STD X students . Trusted by 40,000+ parents in India .
Interactive and fun math learning program for children .
Discover Kids ScienceADDA: www.scienceadda.com :
At ScienceAdda, we create a fun and unforgettable learning experience for children in the area of Science. We innovate and create thematic (topics in science) experiential Science pavilions that is curated (storytellers) and delivered to children at schools or public locations. These experiences allow children to relate what they learn at school (curriculum) to real-life applications.
Imaginate : www.imaginate.in
Imaginate is a world renowned Augmented Reality , mixed Reality and Virtual Reality Technology based enterprise based in Hyderabad , that offers innovative visualization products and services which enhance the consumers experience of reality .
Space Kidz india : www.spacekidzindia.com
is an organization dedicated in designing innovative concepts for students in the field of education. Space Kidz India is working towards promoting Arts , Science and Culture for students of India , by creating an international platform for the same .
PiJam Foundation : www.thePiJam.org
Pi Jam Foundation is a Non Profit Organization established in September 2017 who aim to address the pressing concerns in the Indian System with regard to use of Technology in Education through Workshops , Pi Labs , and Weather Stations.
Edvizo plans to reinvent India’s educational institutions via innovative technology . They plan to develop a platform that empowers every child to take career decisions with grassroot level research , competitive comparison tools and personalized experience for students from the moment they walk in
Xlpora Box : https://www.xplorabox.com
Monthly subscription activity box for kids with numerous skill enhancing activities which help to develop the various motor , cognitive and social skills of your child . The Child will receive a theme based box every month , packed with some exciting projects , games , DIY activities and a story book.
FlintoBox : www.flintobox.com
it is an india based company that produces educational activity boxes for children . Based on a theme the company makes resources for early child development on a monthly basis . Curriculum based activity kits developed by teachers for LKG to STD X. kids.
Progress so Far : Some STARTUPS provide DIY Kit for kids in leaning by doing : Many Startups have identified this need and have come up with STEM based education through STEM Centres , Tinkering Labs , Augmented Realty offerings and Virtual Reality offerings .
The Govt through its Make in India Program and Skill India program is coming up with assistance to schools for setting up ATAL Tinkering Labs.
What needs to be done for the future :
Schools should also be provided help with Setting Up Learning Labs , upgrade the school library with the latest technology improvements like assessment systems , learning tools , etc.
Some sort of ecosystem needs to be created for schools to offer stem based education so that they get to offer projects of robots, science activities , math’s lab, soft skills lab , programming skills without needing to invest in them.
Difficulties in implementing STEM Education can be with the change in attitude and mindset needed at the school level where the educators feel that with introduction of STEM based education it will be difficult to complete the normal syllabus and that the kids will lose focus on their subjects . Creating and investing on infrastructure , Developing a Curriculum, and guidance and support to offer STEM based education will be another problem area in increasing the growth of STEM based education . The educators and management need to be shown the positive long term benefits and effects of introducing STEM based education in the learning system .
Countries around the world have recognized the need of introducing STEM based education and have included their respective Govt, Schools and administration to take steps to Introduce STEM based education.
India has a huge population with a high amount of talent and willingness to learn and needs to develop and focus on innovation and development right from the school stage.
This is possible by creating an awareness about the changed requirements by creating an ecosystem of all stakeholders with parents being aware of the growing need for STEM education with rising competition, Schools need to make the shift in imparting education from text book based education to learning by doing , various startups recognizing the need for STEM education to bring in curriculum and offerings for introducing STEM based education and the Govt to foster a sense of the changing times and introduce STEM based education in the curriculum. With this the The Future looks bright for STEM education in India .
About the Author : Thomas is the Founder of www. Info4Kids.com and www.Competition4Kids two websites dealing with offering updates on various activities, products and services for school going kids and is passionate about introducing various kids related offerings to parents and educational institutions to bring about holistic development for kids .