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Institution unveils coding and robotics centre

A provider of digital learning solutions has unveiled a Coding and Robotics centre in Kakamega to provide alternative pathways for students to perform well in Science Technology Engineering Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) Courses.

A display of Robots and the toolkits for assembling them at the Dschool World of Learning in Kakamega. Photo by Anne Otieno

STEAM is an approach that integrates Arts in the more familiar Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

The Managing Director of the institution, Dschool World of Learning, Wycliffe Kibisu said the centre is open to students, parents, teachers, researchers, and schools that may need to add value to their learning experiences.

“When teachers, students or parents come here, they will actually find that there is a solution to their various needs. Similarly, researchers in education will find out that there are tools they can use to enhance their papers or their education content as far as delivery is concerned,” he noted.

He said the Robotics Centre will be used to deliver the mandatory skills required in the 21st century which include Critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, communication and data analytics.

“These skills are very important for children and they are gained mostly from age 2 to age 9. If children fail to get these particular skills, which are very critical, by the time they reach high school or university, there is very little that a teacher can do in order for the student to succeed,” he noted.

The Robotics and Coding Centre is an additional solution that the institution is offering to jumpstart the program which involves learning using education games.

The program is rolled out by Dschool World of Learning in partnership with Jumpstart California and Robotics from Korea Japan.

The Director urged schools to utilize the institution which has enough resources, Smartclasses and a science arcade to learn and improve performance in the STEAM area.

Schools like Booker Academy and many other Compassion schools in Kakamega have adopted the model of using learning through games and use of coding and Robotics.

He said the program is tailored to ensure that every child who goes into a classroom does not graduate without the required skills. Apart from excelling in classwork, students acquire necessary skills that nurture their character, preparing them to be competitive in the job market.

“Children who have gone through the program have good command of Language, Science, Mathematics and also they have a command in character,” he pointed out.

The jumpstart program of using educational games was started in 2007 with the Director’s three children as pioneers. One of the students has qualified to join McGill University after scoring an impressive result in physics.

A Lecturer of Physics at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology Philip Amuyunzu said they are keen on transitioning students who join the institution of higher learning to pursue STEAM Courses.

He said the University has been using Arduino Balls for practicals, but with the launch of the Robotics Centre, it will start utilizing the centre to teach some of the courses.

Amuyunzu also said the institution which has a planetarium will be an asset to the University as it prepares to introduce another course known as Astrophysics.

The Lecturer said the Coding and Robotics centre is a big boost to the Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) and the recent roll-out of the coding curriculum in primary and secondary schools in the country by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

By Moses Wekesa and Anne Otieno

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