These PenPal Stars attend Samsidh Mount Litera Zee School, which focuses on “doing all we can to ensure that we prepare our students as confident, caring young people, who are creative, curious, and committed to their learning. We believe we empower our students with the necessary tools to choose their future.” Kishan, Shashank, Abhinav, Aryaman, and Tanay demonstrate these qualities through their work with PenPal Schools.
From TVs, phones, cars, planes, and new Artificial Intelligence programs, we depend on robots for a variety of daily functions. Reports show that by 2019, there will be more than 2.6 million industrial robots in use worldwide. However, it is predicted that there will not be enough qualified employees to fill the jobs that continue to grow in this field. To fix this problem, let’s start teaching more of our students about robotics today!
Students enrolled in Robotics learn about job opportunities in the robotics field and are challenged to create Showcase projects that require critical thinking and problem solving skills. Lessons challenge the students to learn about hardware, software, and artificial intelligence. The unit also includes several project based learning ideas such as designing their own robot, exploring potential careers, and writing a robot story.
Through Robotics, Kishan, Abhinav, Shashank, Aryaman, and Tanay are deepening their understanding of this growing field by collaborating with peers around the world. Read about their discoveries and reflections below:
What are some examples of robots you see in your community?
Shashank: The first one is driverless cars - scientists have done a lot of hard work to just come up to one idea: driverless cars. People can reduce the number of accidents done by us by using this technology. The second is the bendable phone - China has recently launched a new product the bendable phone this phone can bend up to 180 degrees so cool right. The third one Sea water converting into drinkable water - Developed by a team of researchers at Alexandria University in Egypt, the procedure uses a desalination technique called pervaporation to remove the salt from sea water and make it drinkable.
Kishan: The three different types of robots I see are:
1. The ones that make cars in the factory. These robots manufacture the car on their own.
2. The other one is the one that picks heavy objects.
3. The last one is the one which digs bore wells which produce water to us.
Abhinav: Well if you talk about robots the first thing that comes to mind is mobile phones the reason I think like this is because every time I or we do something it uses a robot or a system or an electronic. In fact this very second I am using electronics or robotics to type in my computer, actually the reason I call my computer a robot is because it has an A.I. technology feature which is amazing because it feels like the computer is my own best friend. And coming to the topic where I use robotic technology in my community are mostly in factories, laundry stores, my TV and etc. In my opinion the main work of Robots or otherwise known as robotics is that they eliminate dangerous jobs for humans because they are capable of working in hazardous (dangerous) environments. If I come to the purpose part I don't know how to explain it it goes unlimited because as far as I know there are million and gazillions of robots each invented every second so there are robots for almost all the purposes in the world.
What are some examples of software you see on a daily basis?
Abhinav: Well the answer for this is pretty simple and pretty much the same answer for the previous question. Where do we use software in our life? Obviously everywhere, What is a software? It’s basically a set of commands or instructions. So to be honest the very second you are reading this or my teacher is grading my answer the computer is following a set of commands or instructions to do all its operations. For another example when I collaborate with my teammates my computer is using this software to work. Even when you comment on my answer which I know you will, for typing each letter your computer uses a software to execute all the processes. In the question it was asked where do you use software in your community but I don't even need to go as far as to my society and community as far as I am concerned everyone person from every house uses software in some form or the other. It doesn't have to be only a computer it can be a mobile phone an XBOX, a WII, or any other game station or even industrial purposes for manufacturing the products that we require in our day to day life.
How would you improve the software of a robot or device that you you use?
Aryaman: I would put a new software in it. This software will enable the robot to speak and respond. It can also understand human languages so that it will be easy to communicate with the people.It would also have a storage place to transfer products nearby.
Tanay: I can improve a robots software by updating its central processing unit here's a video that will make you understand What is Robotic Process Automation? - RPA Software | UiPath® https://www.uipath.com/rpa/robotic-process-automation
RPA means automation of business processes using software robots that perform ... Only substantially better.
Reflect on what you learned:
Tanay: I really liked robotics very interesting and fun I could learn many things like artificial intelligence software hardware, ect. I would love to do robotics in real life and test myself on what i learned from this project.
Kishan: I really very much liked this robotics project and I learned a lot of things and interesting facts about robots. I have met many friends from other countries and enjoyed [that] a lot. I would like to do more robotics and I would also like to make a robot in real life so that I can play with it.
Aryaman: Due to the vast use of technology most of the people become dependent on technology. I got this great opportunity to learn about the artificial intelligence. It is so interesting that it allows me to remember the information in a fun way.
World of Geometry
Connecting academic concepts to real life is a major goal for all teachers, but can be particularly challenging in math. In fact, a poll shows that K-12 math teachers identified creating opportunities for authentic learning as the biggest challenge to overcome. By using project based learning, teachers can overcome this obstacle by having students collaborate to solve real world math problems.
World of Geometry includes a variety of problem based learning ideas including re-designing a space in the community, calculating the volume of vehicles to pack for road trips, and interviewing people that use geometry in their jobs.
In addition to learning about geometry in their communities, these PenPal Stars created and solved math word problems. World problems help students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills. Check out how they use math vocabulary to create and answer questions:
Through project based learning, Kishan, Shashank, Abhinav, Aryaman and Tanay were able to analyze how geometry could be used in real life situations. Read their reflections about how people in their community in India use geometry on a daily basis:
Abhinav: People use geometry in calculating area of land in my community. For example the area is rectangular they use the formula of area. the job in which people use geometry are teacher, mathematician, land collector. In olden days the patwari used to connect land revenue by calculating the area of the land whether being it was rectangular, triangular and etc.
Aryaman: I see people use geometry in my community in architectural fields. Architects use mathematics for several reasons. since earliest times, builders relied on imitating natural forms—the circular Stonehenge in Britain—and then applied mathematical principles to standardize and replicate the forms. The Greek mathematician Euclid of Alexandria is considered the first person to write down all the rules related to geometry. They used it to measure the length of the houses, the structure, etc.
Kishan: Air control uses geometry to determine the angles of each planes flight path to avoid accidents in air. Aircraft designers also use geometry everyday. Even architects use geometry for measuring the size of the house etc. In fact we can see geometry everywhere.
Shashank: I see people use geometry in many places even where I'm staying. The house is full of geometry i.e. T.V. is rectangular the cupboard is triangular. Well, the architect is a job who uses shapes to make the best out of what he can for others.
Tanay: [Geometry is] used by architects to measure; buildings, playgrounds, the distance the car ran, to measure angles , when the teachers or professors teach us, when we are making a project or while solving equations or while doing the penpals activity!!!!
In their project, Kishan, Shashank, Abhinav, Aryaman, and Tanay created their own math word problems and discovered how geometry can be used in everyday life! We reached out to them to learn more about them and their experience with PenPals.
PENPAL SCHOOLS: What do you like to do after school or for fun? Are you in any clubs or activities?
Kishan: I would like to play and enjoy with my friends.
Shashank: I like to do Penpals after I come from school.
Abhinav: I like to play skate-boarding and chess. I have joined chess and robotics and mathematics club.
Aryaman: I like to study and then play. I am in an science club which helps us to explore many things.
Tanay: I like to play cricket.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Kishan: I would like to stay in my country because i like my country very much.
Shashank: I'll travel to Paris as there is a lot to learn over there.
Abhinav: I love to go to Bhutan and learn the Art of happiness and want to spread love and happiness everywhere.
Aryaman: I would travel to USA and explore the new things over there which can help me in my further studies.
Tanay: I would go to Singapore so that I can visit the Universal Studios.
How did you feel when you found out you were going to be featured as a PenPal Star?
Shashank: I felt happy and proud of myself.
Abhinav: Awesome feeling, top of the world.
Aryaman: I felt very excited when I got to know that I was a penpal star.
Why do you think it's important to learn with other students from around the world?
Aryaman: It is important as we have a base to learn and explore new things.
Tanay: It is important because we will learn new things.
What has been your favorite thing about learning with PenPals?
Kishan: I have learnt that others have many good and interesting things to share.
Shashank: I have learned that everyone has different viewpoints.
Aryaman: I could share my opinions with many people. I can interact with a lot of people from a lot of different countries. It also helps me in my studying fields.
Tanay: I liked it because it is fun and made me feel like I am using Facebook.
What was the most important lesson you learned in this project?
Kishan: I learned many things from many people. I learned that there were many other occupations with geometry.
Shashank: Never fail to try.
Abhinav: People around the world are also same like us.
Aryaman: I learned to interact with more people and understand activities in many fields.
Tanay: I learned that we should try try and try and never give up.
How has your project changed the way you think about the world?
Abhinav: Now I know there are lots of different techniques are there to solve the same problems. Everyone is unique. We should respect each other.
Aryaman: I could know what other people think as they share their views and this changed my way of thinking.
Tanay: Now I understood how small the world is.
What advice do you have about being a great PenPal?
Abhinav: Respect each other, everyone is unique. Think out of the box.
Aryaman: [My] advice [is] to interact with people without any fear.
Tanay: THE advice is never give up.
Congratulations Abhinav, Aryaman, Kishan, Shashank, and Tanay! You did a great job exploring the connection between STEM and everyday lives. We are excited to see how you use this knowledge in your Showcase and future projects!
By joining World of Geometry or Robotics, your students will have a community of peers from around the world to compare problem-solving skills and learn key concepts with. When students see how STEM subjects are valuable to their lives and their futures, they become more motivated to apply skills to create STEM projects that provide solutions to several world problems.
Interested in teaching STEM with your class? Check out these project based learning examples:
Are Kids Worried About Robots Taking Jobs?
Students Design Math Challenges for Global PenPals
PBL Example: Student from the USA Learns about Financial Literacy and Money Management
Students of the World Inspire Change through Art