It has been around 9 months that I have been a mentor for AIM. It is a privilege to work with my ATL lab at NES High School and Jr College, Bhandup, Mumbai. The school serves as an innovation hub for more than 100+ schools in the area and invites children from various municipality and government aided schools, orphanages, handicapped and specially abled children across socio-economic groups.
My primarily role at this hub is build innovation capacity by conducting Design and Systems Thinking, Creativity and Innovation workshops for children across these socio-economic groups. I regularly mentor students to structure their ideas using the Design Thinking process so that they can think from the customer point of view and solve problems related to the local community and sustainability goals. Key skills include empathy building, co-creation, failing fast to succeed faster, frugal innovation, enjoying uncertainty and finding harmony in chaos.
Please refer to pic. of poster created and printed for the ATL Lab
In order to build their innovation potential, the 3H mantra of using both their right and left hemispheres of the brain, along with their heart as well as their hands, i.e. maker’s mindset with kinesthetic learning and STEM technologies.
I would like to highlight two major events held this year (ATL Tinkerfest and ATL Community Day), which attracted 400+ kids resulting in 80 prototypes with 20 winners – that I have had the privilege to personally mentor. The “Idea Life Line – smart & safe railway station” and “Plastic Roads by e-waste” projects are worth considering for pan India implementation. These projects address sustainability development using emerging technologies to create local community impact. The students used technologies available in the lab (such as IOT sensors, robotics, Arduino, solar etc) to prototype solutions addressing these challenges.
Overall, the journey so far has been very fulfilling as a mentor. Feel super inspired and humbled to have mentored such young innovators to solve our grassroot level problems.
The smiles, cheers and passion are priceless! I believe the youth of India has tremendous untapped potential to drive not only India’s innovation economy, but also solve global challenges.
The ATL in-charge, Mrs. Shaheen Sahibole, manages the ATL program well. She meticulously ensures that children who visit the lab, benefit from the lab facilities.
As I continue my journey in untapping and directing the creative potential of children, I will be involved in introducing workshops on programming with electronics and digital wellness. I believe, while it is important to educate children on the power of technology to solve complex problems, it is also our responsibility to build their resilience towards digital platforms and help them become digitally responsible.
Write-up by: Avinash Jhangiani, Mentor, NES High School & Jr College, Bhandup, Mumbai
ATL Incharge : Mrs. Shaheen Sahibole