Novel initiative to fuel students' interest through setting up Math labs across State

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Novel initiative to fuel students' interest through setting up Math labs across State

Novel initiative to fuel students' interest through setting up Math labs across State

Shloka Nayak   ¦    Jun 16, 2021 10:01:27 AM (IST)

Novel initiative to fuel students\' interest through setting up Math labs across State-1

It is highly important for young children to enjoy Mathematics to develop a scientific temperament. Hence, Dr T R Anantharamu Vignana Pratishtana, a Bangalore-based trust aims to help 100 schools across Karnataka establish math labs. The trust will assist the schools in designing the labs as well as provide math teachers with the required training to manage the lab. While the school provides the infrastructural resources, the trust will help with procuring the right experiments and apparatus required to teach students in an engaging and effective way.

The foundation aims to harbour an interest in Math and Science learning amongst young students. The initiative currently targets students in secondary and higher secondary school, i.e. students from classes 6 through 10.

Through this initiative, the trust also aims to build a strong network of math teachers across the state and bridge the gap in terms of educational resources. “We have identified several WhatsApp groups and forums of math teachers from different corners of the State. However, all these different groups come from different areas and are unaware of the presence of one another. Our goal is to connect them and become the mediator in sharing knowledge, resources and ideas to create a large network,” said Rohit Chakrathirtha, Vice President of Dr T R Anantharamu Vignana Prathistana.

“The response to this initiative has been overwhelmingly positive. In two days, we received around 100 emails from math teachers across the state commending our effort to promote learning. We have even received responses from Kasaragodu and Chennai which shows that this addition to education is the need of the hour,” said Chakrathirtha.

The trust plans to cooperate with the schools in the long-term since the concepts are ever-evolving and new materials keep flowing in. In tune with the recommendations from the NEP, the aim of creating these math labs is to reduce the number of theory classes and focus on practical learning. This helps students grab mathematical concepts better, compared to traditional learning methods. Children can be fully immersed in the learning process. “We will be introducing new concepts through experiments wherein students have the chance to infer and formulate the concepts,” added Chakrathirtha.

Novel initiative to fuel students\' interest through setting up Math labs across State-2

Talking about the gap that existing math labs fail to bridge, Chakrathirtha said, “Where current math labs lack is that they simply show children the models of different shapes or just explain the concepts. However, in experiment-based teaching, the students have a chance to perform the experiment, take some reading and understand the concepts.”

The initiative is already underway and the trust hopes to open its first math lab in a few months. They will remain in constant touch with the schools and teachers that have approached them online and hope for schools to reopen and things to get back to normal as soon as possible. “The purpose of these math labs is to enable children to learn using a hands-on approach while the teacher supervises. The purpose of practical learning is lost in the online mode,’ said Chakrathirtha.

The foundation is also undertaking other initiatives, such as creating the first science and math magazine in Kannada in the state. They are also planning to create science-related videos in Kannada and host them on YouTube to make them accessible to everyone. They aim to teach students to write research papers and publish them on their website since there has been a decrease in the number of science-related research papers of late. Apart from these initiatives, the trust also aims to start ‘Ugadi Lectures’, which is emulated from ‘The Royal Institution Christmas Lectures’ by Michael Faraday. On Ugadi, they plan to invite eminent guest speakers with a science background to deliver interesting talks to children.

Novel initiative to fuel students\' interest through setting up Math labs across State-3

The foundation is spearheaded by A. R. Annapurna, Rohit Chakrathirtha, Rangaswamy N. R. and Chetan T. A. and is looking to join hands with like-minded people who also believe in promoting science teaching and learning in the state. “The main reason why we decided to start this trust is that there is no foundation for science and math education in the state. While we have foundations for various other fields, there is no such platform for science education,” said Chakrathirtha.

The mission of the trust is to create a sustainable environment for interactive learning through hands-on training and mentoring programmes.

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