Several of the Isha Home School, Middle School students had the opportunity to participate in robotics workshops conducted by instructors from STEM Center USA.

On the 4th of June, just two days into the term, several of the Middle School students had the opportunity to participate in one of two robotics workshops conducted by instructors from STEM Center USA. Ms. Melissa Jawaharlal, CEO, and Ms Lavanya Jawaharlal, President, of STEM Center USA were able and passionate guides who conducted the “Creative Robotics” and “Discover Energy” programs respectively.

Incidentally, they are the daughters of Dr Mariappan “Jawa” Jawaharlal, a renowned STEM education proponent and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the California State Polytechnic University. Dr. Jawa’s had earlier conducted a Robotics Workshop and “Sumo Robot Challenge” at IHS.

STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. STEM Center USA is an educational institution which endeavors to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders by developing a passion for STEM careers at a young age. Using robotics as a platform, students were taught how to build, design, program, and test their own robots through a series of engaging hands-on activities.

The excitement in the air was palpable. By the end of the day, the students were animatedly explaining what they had learned and were rattling off terminology that even some of the senior students would have to scratch their heads to recall!

Student Sharings

The “Discover Energy” workshop was awesome. I never expected the workshop to be so interesting. We learnt how to build a robot from scratch. We also made a turbine, experimented with solar power, and made a battery and a solar car. Now I have a lot of interest in robots. Swarna, 11yrs

We learnt about different kinds of energy, mostly wind, hydro and solar. First we made a solar power robot, then a wind power robot, then a battery car. At the end we had a race and my battery car won the first two races! The workshop was soooooooo awesome!  Gayathri, 11 yrs

In our Creative Robotics workshop, we learnt the full definition of a robot – a machine that senses, thinks and acts. We learned about special wires called tricolor LEDs and about motors such as the Servo gear. This gear can be used to rotate things up to 180 degrees. With this in mind we started making our robots and had a lot of fun doing that.  Karn, 11 yrs

All the children were enthusiastic about their workshops and drawn to technology which they might not have been drawn to otherwise. I’m sure these workshops will be remembered for a long time, and for some children, they may be an eye-opening experience which will impact their future career paths. Sunil, Teacher

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