2019 Oct 8
We live in a world that’s changing rapidly in front of our own eyes and there’s nothing we can do other than try to catch up with it.
In the race to catch up with the rest of the world giving our children the right kind of education is vital. However, the right kind of education is far different from the traditional education that we were exposed to and we need something new and revolutionary.
Makerspaces and the education that happens around them is a revolutionary system tailor-made to provide children with the skills they need for the future.
Let’s look into what these so-called makerspaces are where you can find some in Sri Lanka.
What is a Makerspace?
According to makerspace.com, “A makerspace is a collaborative workspace inside a school, library or separate public/private facility for making, learning, exploring and sharing that uses high tech to no tech tools.”
These are spaces where anyone can learn, experiment with and create incorporating science, engineering and art. Although the concept of makerspaces is open to everyone, in Sri Lanka these are mostly for children.
A child can learn anything from computer programming, building robots to designing 3D prints in one of these classes and since the programs are focused on activity as opposed to learning facts. Students are encouraged to make mistakes, try out new things and figure things on their own with the “teachers” just being there to assist.
How is it impactful?
The whole idea of Makerspace is to offers a hands-on approach to learning by giving the opportunity to experiment and invent through science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) concepts.
With this hands on approach, children tend to get better at critical thinking, design thinking and self-directed learning while building perseverance and innovation. In a world where more and more jobs are being automated, being able to think and create is going to be a valuable skill
As Sri Lanka’s first makerspace they are the pioneers when it comes to igniting creativity and passion. Igniter Space has branches in Moratuwa, Kandy, Gampaha, Negombo, and Colombo with programs for children from ages 5 through 18. The Innovator Program which is their flagship Maker program focusses on a vast array of skills like mechanical and electrical engineering, robotics, 3D printing and so on. On top of that they have programs on computer programming, mechatronics and entrepreneurship.
Contact number: 0777 206 228
MakerSpace at the American Centre (Free Program)
The US embassy in Sri Lanka launched a MakerSpace program for children in 2016. This program focusing on innovation and engineering is for children between the ages of 10 and 15. The program covers topics such as mechanics, electronics, computer programming and robotics. They also host a 6-week MakerSpace program for adults. The best way to be posted about their new programs is through the American Center Facebook page.
Address: 44, Galle Rd, Colombo 03
Contact number: 0112 498 146
Moving outside Colombo, this Makerspace in Batticaloa has programs in five levels along with monthly workshops for children ages 5 through 15. With a big focus on the STEM education system, their core philosophy is to promote innovation in young minds. With subjects like Mobile App Development, Mechanics, Arduino Programming their curriculum is both extensive and fun.
Contact number: +94777919177