CLIx Science: Motion module field trial, Chhattisgarh, 5-11 June 2016

We believe children have an intuitive idea of motion. Our pedagogical design encourages students to speak up in class, using examples from their own experiences: hichak-pichak described the feeling of acceleration in a bus; Indian and Australian bowlers supplied data for graph-making; students ran and collected data, which they plotted along a slope; they discussed how motion illusion is created in films.

Plotting India-Australia cricket match data on a graph

The trials were conducted in two schools near Bilaspur, with 14 students in Pendri Dih, and 20 in Rani Gaon. On the fifth day we introduced our game, which they looked forward to playing in the computer lab. We told them it was an incomplete prototype, which they had to help us improve. They had to become investigators and figure out from a table and graph whether a bus was late. In another section of game they had to change the speed of the bus so it would reach certain stops on time.

An exciting moment – playing the game on the laptop

It was their first experience of using computers. They were clearly using the mouse for the first time, but the screen was familiar as they had plenty of gaming experience on cell phones. Soon, they had made the mouse their own.At one point, the electricity suddenly went off. We had promised everyone in the class a chance to play, and soon half the students were gathered around one laptop. Then it was time to leave, and we promised to return the next day, but unfortunately an important meeting with a state official intervened.

Many of the children we met worked with their parents at home and in the fields. Some were from migrant families. One boy had recently been a daily wage labourer in construction. We long to be with them again, and are waiting for the roll-out.

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