27 de nov. 2014

Underwater robotics at Shanti Bhavan? Yeah!!


Today has been a busy day for our UdiGitalEdu team at Shanti Bhavan. We conducted an incredible underwater robotics workshop in a fountain at the school. 


An amazing activity considering that we are in a rural area of South India. The robot is made with low cost materials by high school kids in Catalonia. Shanti Bhavan children teleoperated the underwater vehicle and learned concepts of robotics and physics. They also used an underwater camera and a monitor to view what was happening under the water. Tomorrow we will repeat the experience with more kids.

We truly believe in the power of robotics to encourage creativity, critical thinking and teamwork.


Coming back to Shanti Bhavan


I never get tired of coming back to Shanti Bhavan. The way from Bangalore to the school is always very special, and when you arrive and you hear a lot of kids calling you «Hi Edu!» is very emotional. This is my 7th time at the school and I'm bringing with me two colleagues of UdiGitalEdu (Jordi and Xevi).

For them is the first visit to the school and yesterday we spent some time exploring the campus and visiting some classes. We also conducted an activity of "unplugged computer science" with the forth graders, and we started preparing the underwater robotics workshop.


26 de nov. 2014

See you next time Parikrma!


Our last day at Parikrma Centre for Learning in Jayanagar we conducted two activities: an unplugged computer science workshop (how to program robots without robots), and a Scratch workshop about how to make computer games.

It was a farewell but only temporary because from January a group of students from two Parikrma schools (Koramangala and Jayanagar) will participate in the new edition of Inventors4Change project, where they will collaborate online with children in Catalonia.



24 de nov. 2014

Underwater robotics in Koramangala


This afternoon the UdiGitalEdu team in India (Xevi Cufí, Jordi Freixenet and I) conducted an underwater robotics workshop for the children of Parikrma Centre for Learning in Koramangala (Bangalore). It was held in the swimming pool of the Koramangala Club.

 

For us it's been a challenge to do this activity in India and we are very happy with the result. Children were able to teleoperate a low-cost underwater vehicle, they discovered how it works, and they learned some robotics concepts like remote operation, and also some simple physics concepts like buoyancy. During the activity children have been challenged to perform some cooperative tasks, like retrieving objects from the bottom of the pool and bring them to the surface, by using the robot, a cam and a monitor.

I think the pictures speak for themselves.

23 de nov. 2014

Robotics in Jayanagar

 

After low-cost robotics and Scratch is now the turn of LEGO WeDo robots. The children of Parikrma Centre for Learning in Jayanagar have been building robots and then programming them with Scratch. It's been really amazing how they managed to make real robots interact with virtual characters on the computer.

Also they added additional sensors and experienced making the robots and virtual characters react with nearby objects.

 
  

22 de nov. 2014

Índia, on ets?


Avui a les Imágenes del día d'El País han seleccionat aquesta fotografia de Rajesh Kumar Singh. És el retrat d'una dona hindú resant a la riba del Ganges a Allahabad. Aquesta Índia idíl·lica em resulta molt llunyana des de la jungla urbana de Bangalore en la que estic immers.

Cada vespre però, gràcies a la lectura de l'Experiència Vèdica de Raimon Panikkar torno a connectar-hi.

21 de nov. 2014

Classes are planets


Some days ago I said in this blog that each school is a different universe with its forces and laws. In this universe each class could be a planet. In Parikrma Schools this is not just a metaphor, the classes are named as planets! Of course I like the idea.

Continuing the metaphor, switching from one class to another is like making an interplanetary journey, you have to adapt to the new atmosphere and gravity. The teachers are highly trained astronauts.

 
 

20 de nov. 2014

L'única pàtria que té l'home és la seva infància


Avui, dia mundial de la infància, he fet aquesta fotografia sortint de classe. Bonica, oi? Aquestes nenes són el futur de l'Índia.  

I un pensament de Rilke: l'única pàtria que té l'home és la seva infància. Pensem-hi.

19 de nov. 2014

The magic of #Scratch


Every time I show for the first time Scratch to a group of children is a very special moment. When they discover that they can make their characters do what they want is a kind of magic. Spontaneous motivation and engagement occurs. Today in Parikrma School in Jayanagar I had this feeling. 

These children come from various slums surrounding the school. They belong to very poor families and none of them have computers at home. But their reactions in front of Scratch are the same as those of any child from a family with resources. I have conducted literally hundreds of Scratch workshops in different countries and environments, and the reactions are always very similar. It is the magic of Scratch.


18 de nov. 2014

Rangolis


Nou propòsit. Aprendre a dibuixar rangolis. El Rangoli és un art tradicional de l'Índia que consisteix en dibuixar dissenys i patrons al terra davant l'entrada de les cases. Alguns són relativament senzills, com els de les fotografies que acompanyen aquesta entrada (tots són del carrer on estic allotjat), però poden arribar a ser complicadíssims, i durant els festivals hindús se'n fan alguns impressionants, afegint més colors i a vegades també pètals de flors.

El mot rangoli prové d'una paraula sànscrita que significa l'expressió creativa de l'art mitjançant els colors. Al sud de l'Índia als rangolis també se'ls anomena kolam

Tradicionalment es feien amb pols d'arròs, farines, o cúrcuma, però ara s'utilitzen pigments sintètics, sorres acolorides, i altres materials. La immensa majoria de les vegades són realitzats per dones.

Des d'un punt de vista matemàtic són molt interessants perquè segueixen patrons geomètrics molt elaborats, amb diferents tipus de simetries.



17 de nov. 2014

Low-cost robotics at Parikrma School in Jayanagar


This afternoon I replicated an activity I already conducted in Koramangala. The children of Parikrma School in Jayanagar built BristleBots and DrawingBots with low cost materials and lots of imagination. You can see some pictures of the session and a short video.

This workshop is perfect for promoting teamwork and trial-and-error as a fundamental method of solving problems.



16 de nov. 2014

Bengaluru. Random images


As people like to say, sometimes an image is better than a thousand words. Here some random shots I took these past two weeks.

15 de nov. 2014

14 de nov. 2014

New school, new children, same motivation!


This year we expand our project to a new school: Parikrma Centre for Learning in Jaynagar. Whenever I get to a new school I feel very honored. Each school is a different universe with its forces and laws, and it takes a while to get used to that ecosystem. Today in Jayanagar I had a good feeling.

 
 

13 de nov. 2014

Last day at Parikrma Koramangala


Time flies and today I conducted the last workshop for Parikrma School in Koramangala (today LEGO WeDo Robotics). Tomorrow morning I'll go there to see their special program for Children's Day, and at afternoon I'll start my work at Parikrma School in Jayanagar.


These last days I've been promoting computational thinking and creative thinking through robotics and programming activities, but also through several "unplugged computer science" activities.

The kids really enjoyed, and they are looking forward to start Inventors4change project next January.

 

I learned a lot from these kids, probably more than they from me, and I am sure that I will see them again very soon. 
 

12 de nov. 2014

El problema més important de la Humanitat


Avui, a l'escola Parikrma de Koramangala hem fet una sessió sense ordinadors ni robots. En una de les activitats he preguntat als nens i nenes Quin és el problema més important que ha d'encarar la Humanitat?

Hi ha hagut respostes de tota mena. Vet aquí algunes d'elles: la pobresa, els diners, la tristesa, l'educació, el canvi climàtic, la fam, la religió, les addiccions.

Creieu que canviarien gaire les respostes en un altre context? No sé, mestres que correu pel món, feu la prova i m'ho digueu!

També els he preguntat com resoldre aquests problemes, i si la tecnologia ens pot ajudar d'alguna manera. Però aquestes respostes les guardo per algun altre apunt.

11 de nov. 2014

Dues mares


Surto de l'escola després d'un dia intens. Sento unes veus de nens que em criden «bye Eduard anna», em giro i els faig adéu amb la mà. Deixo la barriada i enfilo per 80 Feet Road, tinc uns dos quilòmetres fins a la casa on estic allotjat.

Abans d'arribar, em paro en un cafè i decideixo prendre un chai i menjar alguna cosa. Mentre faig el primer glop, aixeco el cap i pel vidre de la porta d'entrada veig una mare amb tres filles, totes assegudes a la vorera, menjant alguna cosa que des d'aquí no arribo a veure. Les quatre descalces i vestides amb una indumentària rural, que contrasta amb la de la gent que passa pel seu davant. El cabell desendreçat i les mans molt brutes. Al cap d'un moment, la filla més petita (d'uns cinc anys) s'aixeca, agafa una bossa plena d'objectes estrafolaris i es submergeix en el dens tràfic del carrer, com la cosa més natural del món, intentant vendre alguna d'aquelles andròmines als conductors que paren en aquell encreuament. La mare ni la mira. Segueix concentrada en el menjar.

Dintre del cafè, a la taula del costat, una mare i una filla. La mare vesteix texans i brusa de disseny, la filla, d'uns 8 anys, porta un uniforme d'una escola internacional. Estan berenant, la mare tota l'estona parlant pel mòbil. De cop entra per la porta una noia xinesa i la saluden. Immediatament la noia i la nena busquen una altra taula i deixen a la mare parlant pel mòbil. S'asseuen i la nena obre un quadern i agafa un bolígraf. Comencen una classe particular de xinès.

Això és Bangalore.

10 de nov. 2014

Parikrma children make their own computer games with Scratch


During the past three sessions Parikrma children in Koramangala have been learning Scratch, and with just few hours they are already programming their own games. 

Among the amazing games they are making, there are mazes, platform games, a version of the flappy bird, or a game about Ironman!

Stay tuned! I'll share some of their creations.