A Complete Guide to Atal Tinkering Labs: FIZ Robotic Solutions
- January 20, 2023
- Posted by: FIZ Robotic Solutions
- Category: Atal Tinkering Lab
The Atal Tinkering Lab must organise and participate in tinkering activities for the benefit of the students. These activities not only allow ATL students to tinker and showcase their innovations, but they also help to raise awareness in the community by engaging with parents and other students from non-ATL schools, transforming the ATL into a community hub of innovation. The conducive environment created by such intra-school tinkering and innovation activities also prepares students to go out and advocate for their innovations on external platforms, providing them with the recognition they deserve for their efforts.
ATL Community Day is a special event that brings together young minds from the community to celebrate tinkering, learning, and innovation. This is a day to celebrate the community’s inclusiveness through innovation, a chance for everyone to come together and solve problems using the ATL infrastructure.
On April 14th, on the occasion of Ambedkar Jayanti across the country, ATL school students and teachers organise a full day of tinkering activities for non-ATL and community children, particularly those who have not been sensitised about the ATL and/or have not yet had the opportunity to tinker at these labs.
The recent AIM School of Month (SOM) challenge was themed on 3D printing and required students to use the 3D printing facility in their school ATL to innovate in one of AIM’s focus areas.
The winning schools were recognised for their exceptional innovations, and the students received prizes sponsored by AIM partners Stratasys and KPIT.
The ATL SOM Challenge allows ATL schools to use the various resources and modules provided by AIM to propose innovative solutions to theme-based problem statements. The challenge adheres to the philosophy of learning-by-doing, and the competitive spirit helps to bring out the best in each of them. is a competition in which ATL schools compete to create the best innovation prototype using the challenge’s theme. Schools that complete the challenge successfully are recognised and featured on the official AIM website and social media handles. Prizes from AIM’s partner organisations are also available to SOM winners.
Tinkering in schools is becoming a nationwide trend, and the Atal Tinkering Festival allows children to unleash their inner entrepreneur during their summer vacation. Students are encouraged to put their boredom aside this summer break and show their family and the world that they can be a Student-preneur or a Student-maker while at home. During the festival, a wide range of skills that foster entrepreneurship, creativity, and innovation are instilled, benefiting ATL students in their pursuit of excellence.
The ATL Marathon is a national challenge centred on national priorities such as clean energy, water resources, waste management, healthcare, smart mobility, and agri-tech. The Marathon is an uplifting opportunity for young innovators to not only showcase their ideas, but also to take them to prototype and then to a minimum viable product through the opportunities provided to Marathon Winners. As part of their final submission, the schools are expected to provide working proof of concepts or prototypes of the innovation solving a problem statement. The chosen innovations are refined further with prototyping assistance provided by the school in the ATL lab.
AIM, under NITI Aayog, and its partners conducted the Teachers Training Program across the country to build the capacities of resources associated with ATL. The teachers were trained in various aspects of establishing, operating, and successfully monitoring an ATL.
Various partners, including Intel, IBM, KPIT, Learning Links Foundation, and others, have trained over 1500 teachers to date.
One of the many crucial parameters that plays a vital role in making a programme successful, impactful and effective is the communication between its internal and external stakeholders. This free flow of information not only eliminates ambiguity but also keeps stakeholders involved and up to date on programme developments. To communicate with the ATL, several channels must be established, including:
- Email for Customer Service: An official email address must be established for the purpose of sharing information and providing clarification about the programme.
- Social networking sites Social media is an excellent platform for reaching out to existing and potential stakeholders, not only to showcase accomplishments but also to instil a spirit of innovation in the larger group. Schools are encouraged to share their stories on social media platforms in order to raise awareness about the innovation activities and invite community participation.
- Messenger groups on Whatsapp, Facebook, and other social media platforms allow for the quick resolution of issues, the sharing of information, status updates, the sharing of achievements/accolades, and other handholding support.
The strong partnerships formed with various stakeholders, including mentors, industry professionals, and alumni, in order to leverage their expertise in guiding students on various innovation related skills, are an important aspect of the successful implementation of ATL.
Sustainable institutional frameworks that draw on the capacity, resources, and technical know-how of various partners are critical to the Program’s success.
Furthermore, because tinkering as a concept is still relatively new in our country, advancing the idea necessitates consistent handholding support from mentors in the corporate world, academia, institutes of higher education, government, and so on. Given the nature of ATL, mentors are expected to be enablers rather than instructors.
The mentors’ contributions include technical knowledge, innovation and design, business and entrepreneurship, and others. Partners could also help students broaden their technical horizons by providing internship opportunities and organising other programmes specifically designed for ATL students.
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