Vineeta (India) started a project within a project: she decided to teach about robot cars and sent some kits to the camp. Read her story:
Microsoft Innovative Educators (MIE) is believed to be one of the most prestigious positions for teachers across the globe. Last year, around the midst of November, I, Vineeta Garg, was inducted as a part of this initiative. Among its many benefits, I found ‘KAKUMA’, a project by fellow educators, which had a simple aim- to enhance the reach of technology to distant parts of the world. It was primarily based in Kakuma, a refugee camp located in Kenya, hence the name.
That same year in April, MIEs had started teaching the underprivileged children in those camps, providing them with basic education. I, wanting to be a part of such an extraordinary experience, booked a date with the students and got a chance to know them more personally. Only one problem remained- “What to teach?”
Of course the basic knowledge was already being imparted. So, I obviously felt obliged to think along a different path. The train of thought began in my head and I had finally got it- ROBOTICS was my way to go. Having read about their way of life, a place where 20 students shared a single notebook, I knew high-costing robotics kits would be a complete ‘shot in the dark.’
Two nights ago, I had read about an article of the ever worsening weather conditions of Kenya and the waste that had been accumulated there. “Waste? That’s it!” I exclaimed, for the answer was indeed, right in front of my eyes.
I took the help of Koen Timmers and Sixtus Odumbe, my fellow MIE colleagues, without whom, our success wouldn’t be possible. The day came. I was prepared. Over the Skype conference, among dismal conditions, we were able to teach those kids, a thing or two.
To our utter surprise, they showed brilliance beyond our wildest dreams. Our generous Principal ma’am, Mrs. Renu Laroiya, having learned of this astounding achievement, graciously decided to grant more than enough money and help so that we were able to dispatch the Robotics kits they desperately needed.
Thanks to MIE’s initiative, volunteers at the ground level and most of all, the children’s hearty participation, our project reached new heights.
We still have a long way to go, and we shall never stop, not until the goal is achieved and every child in Kakuma is a contributory part of our society, a society where everybody is ROBOSMART……