So your kids love to spend hours together glued to their iPads. From chucking angry birds around, to running around dilapidated temples and watching YouTube videos all day, the amount of insipid media they consume may be beginning to alarm you. However, in a world where everything is going digital, it is also crucial to stay ahead and be able to adapt to new technology. So how does one strike a balance?
An interesting workshop at Atta Gallata this weekend, may hold the key. “A lot of parents see their children spend too much time on iPads, playing games and watching videos. But, what most of us don’t realise is that the same devices can be used for high level learning as well as advanced communication,” explains Rajat, who is the founder of AnB Education, a Gurgaon based company, that’s just opened office in Bangalore.
The company organises workshops and camps for children, which involves iPad enabled learning programmes. They merge the power of tablets with innovative teaching methodology, helping children foster their creativity, critical thinking and communication skills.
This weekend, Rajat and his team are organising a three day winter camp titled ‘Beyond Gaming’ that will introduce parents and children to a host of applications that will help them channel their creativity and learning into productive activities, using the tablet. “The camp that will contain about twelve hours of course time, will cater to two age groups - 6 to 11 year olds and 11 to 14 year olds. The first day will focus on giving the children a hands-on experience of the various apps that are available. In the second half of the camp, the children will pick a project they’d like to work on, and then we will help them through that project and monitor their progress,” informs Rajat.
Children can pick various kinds of projects, ranging from creating comic books to making short movies and creating podcasts. “Some of the apps we’re going to explore are ShowMe, which allows kids to record voice over whiteboard tutorials and share them online; Green Screen lets kids shoot videos against a green screen and then replace it with interesting locations; and Hopscotch which teaches kids to code games, animation videos,” says Rajat. The team expects around eight to ten children to participate in the camp. “It’s a very niche programme. And it involves giving one to one attention to each child present. So it would be great if we can cap the number at eight or ten,” says Rajat.
Creative Crows: Learn about apps that can help create comic books, animations and movies on the iPad.
Thoughtful Owls: Learn apps that help improve logical thinking, and use them to make computer codes and computer games.
Expressive Parrots: Learn how to use apps that help create screencasts and podcasts. Also learn a foreign language, without any help from a teacher.