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Feb 13, 2018 11:37 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Now, a classroom on wheels for Mumbai's underpriviledged children

A mobile learning van is bridging the technological divide by providing underpriviledged children access to the latest channels in learing at their doorsteps in Dharavi and its neighbourhood.

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A mobile learning van is bridging the technological divide by providing underpriviledged children access to the latest channels in learning at their doorsteps in Dharavi and its neighbourhood, reported Hindustan Times. 

The van has information related to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and it aims at inculcating a scientific temper among students.

The STEM van, run by Nawneet Ranjan, the founder of Dharavi Diary, helps students clear the basic concepts, and inculcate a scientific mind-set. As of now, STEM is equipped with a screen and scientific games, which run on solar power.

In the near future, Ranjan plans to introduce robotics and get computers installed in the van so that the children can have all-round development.

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Ranjan teaches students from the New English Secondary School in Pratiksha Nagar through a screen that is attached to the van. Ranjan believes the current education system should do away with rote learning, and focus on the overall development of children.

“The problem with our education system is that it believes in rote learning, which won’t help children develop that insight. Also, there is no hands-on learning in the schools they go to, which is why we have developed this concept, consisting classroom, community and citizenship,” Ranjan told the paper.

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Ranjan has tried this model in Pune for around a month, and he now plans to reach out to around 400 students in the city in the low income areas of Dharavi, Versova, Kurla and Ghatkopar.

As of now, the STEM van makes its round to these areas twice a week.

While the van draws attention of student, it is seen as a good initiative to teach children. Nikita Bansal, a teacher associated with Teach for India told the paper that the van is a great initiavite as it focused on the thought process of children.

“These are 21st century kids; it is thus necessary that we bring about a transformation in the way we teach, and adapt to the changing times,” said Bansal.
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