Written By: Harshita Jain, Batch - 2013, Mahakal Institute of Technology, Ujjain
In our country every year, a large number of students choose technical education as a career. It is lesser-known fact but not everyone is able to get the degree. Even a bunch of people out of those who managed to complete the course never finds a job. It is possible if technical education is introduced earlier in schools itself than youth can have a better perspective and command on domains they would like to move ahead with.
Pi Jam, definitely thinks this idea can change the face of the education system in India. It is a non-profit organization that started in 2017 in Maharashtra. Its motto is –
“Equipping students and educators with tools to learn and create with technology”
A little change in the school education system in science and technology domains can raise the education level really high.
Let us first discuss the hurdles –
Despite the increase in the number of public schools, there is a significant lack of technical infrastructure where students can access computers. Surveys suggest that the absence of funds and trained educators are a few of the reasons behind it. Very few schools do have some designated labs for students and teachers in place. But there comes the second issue of quality. The curriculum focuses on MS Office and basic programming skills, but it will not prepare our students to gain an understanding of computer interaction with the physical world. Talking about the curriculum, the scope of the subject is well defined on the basis of time and topics to be covered. This restricts students to experiment with creativity and learn something beyond the pre-defined course.
Pi Jam Foundation has this common goal where students should be equipped with the required tools, environment and guidance to gain Learning. Here, emphasis on group learning is given, so all the workshops are designed with group activities. Students are put in a position where they have to make the best use of creativity, problem-solving and risk-taking abilities. As there is no pre-defined curriculum, students are free to explore. Let us explore how they aim to help the students -
To create such an environment for students, Pi Jam conducts workshops. For a week or so they host activities for students where they are pushed to stimulate critical thinking, design and problem-solving skills with lots of fun. There is one interesting workshop known as weather station conducted for kids, where students are taught to create automated weather stations for their school. Data from these stations collected at a central server and can be studied to understand the weather patterns of the place. Pi Jam has teacher training programs as well. Teachers are provided with proper training and required hardware. They are also supported by post-training mentorship to create the best outcomes.
The idea itself sounds so fun. It feels like holding the power to give direction to the ones who will be shaping our world tomorrow. And the best part is, everybody can become a part of this initiative either by donating funds or volunteering. Pi Jam always seeks volunteers in areas like becoming an educator or helping the team to manage portal in various fields of business and technology.