Thursday May 24, 2018

American Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons to children

The innovative feature about the school is that whole building turns into a teaching tool or open laboratory where kids can’t help but learn about science and its uses

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ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA— Discovery Elementary School is a school which truly understands the importance of the science. This elementary school based in America uses zero traditional energy and makes use of onsite renewable energy sources.

The innovative feature about the school is that whole building turns into a teaching tool or open laboratory where kids can’t help but learn about science and its uses. The school’s emphasis on science is so strong that kids learn about food waste management in cafeteria and in playground where they see renewable energy in action.

“Every single roof surface on the building is covered with the solar panels, the energy collected is then converted to alternating current which is put back into the grid” Said Greg Rusk, instructional technology coordinator.

An elementary school in US. Image source: Flicker
An elementary school in US. Image source: Flicker

More than three-fourth of the building has glass walls to increase the sun light coming into the building and maximise the use of day light. The use of solar tubes and highly efficient led has resulted in reduction of energy used as well for lighting the core areas of the building where sun light cannot reach.

The sealing also contain noise panels to reduce the overall noise level in the building.

Grey says “It a very open building, so there is large sound deflection and so the panels are in placed on the ceiling to absorb some of that sound to keep students  focused on learning.”

The school also has an inbuilt slide which can be used by the students to reach to different class with some fun. Every classroom has different type of seating to give students and teacher personal learning space.

“This kind of open building where it is highly configurable sort encourages students to work together and teachers are creating projects that help student understand the value of working together to solve bigger problems” explains Greg.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nJTRpgwcnQ

A student named Anna investigated the geothermal wells under the playground which captures energy from the Earth’s crust.

Anna says “I learned like where they were , how deep they were how they helped in that zero energy and how they played the part. If you are just reading science , you have pictures and examples but its also kind of cool to see them real life”

Erin Ruso, principle of the Discovery elementary says “ we are just beginning to learn about the building and to incorporate, how that can enhance student learning. So we always do say we are a work in progress.”

-by Bhaskar Raghavendran

Bhaskar is a graduate in Journalism and mass communication and a reporter at NewsGram. Twitter: bhaskar_ragha

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Number of Students Opting for Science or Tech Are On Rise in India

India leads the world in the number of students getting bachelors degrees in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects, according to the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

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Sydney-based University of New South Wales (UNSW) has instituted 61 scholarships to attract
Representational Image, Pixabay

India leads the world in the number of students getting bachelors degrees in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects, according to the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

Of about 5 million students who received their bachelor’s degrees in 2012 in STEM subjects worldwide, 29.2 per cent were from India, UNCTAD’s Technology and Innovation Report 2018 released on Tuesday said.

China came next with 26 per cent of the STEM graduates. The EU accounted for 9.5 per cent of STEM graduates that year and the US for 6 per cent, the report said.

The report used statistics from 2012 and said the total number of bachelors-equivalent degrees awarded that year was 20 million.

The wide gulf in the numbers of students graduating in STEM explains why the US relies on such a large number of foreigners, especially Indians, to fill its technology workforce needs.

“Many countries are witnessing skills shortages in the fields of digital technologies and many employers report difficulties in filling high-skill vacancies,” UNCTAD said, citing a 2016 worldwide survey by ManpowerGroup on talent shortage that found that 40 per cent of employers reported difficulties in filling positions.

So, if your child is preparing for IIT-JEE or NEET from any of the reputed centres like Aakash Institute, as a parent, it's your responsibility to help your child find the right study time
study, representational image, Pixabay

According to India’s University Grants Commission, 10.7 million students were studying science, engineering/technology or computer science in 2016-17, although it did not give a breakdown between undergraduate and postgraduate levels or by year of study.

They made up 36 per cent of those studying in universities and colleges, UGC statistics showed.

Looking to the future, UNCTAD cautioned that “there were indications that educational institutions were not keeping pace with technological advances during the current transition period”.

It urged educational institutions to “react with agility” to the rapid pace of technology and the labour market changes and said this may require “significant transformations” in the education and training systems.

With the widespread use of artificial intelligence and robots looming on the horizon, the report said that “rapid technological progress required the labour force to develop a broader range of skills, focusing on humans’ comparative advantage, to increase employability”.

Also Read: India-Trained ‘Wrongly Educated’ Monks Banned by China

UNCTAD called for broadbasing education and said: “In the new technological landscape, there is a need for generic, core or fundamental skills such as literacy, numeracy and academic skills, together with basic financial and entrepreneurial skills and increasingly, basic digital and even coding skills.” (IANS)