Francisco goes to a public school and hopes to study medicine when he gets older. He knows that getting into university can be competitive and worries that he won’t have the same skills as the students from the local private school where there are better resources and computer lab.
With our solar learning lab Francisco could use interactive tutorials to learn more about the difference functions of the human body, read science textbooks, and get much needed digital skills he could use to apply for university courses.
Verónica has been making clay figurines in her spare time. She loves making things is curious to try out new materials for her creations but doesn’t know where to start. She’s seen the videos of robots from Boston Dynamics and wants to know how to build a robot herself.
With our Solar Learning Lab, Verónica can learn about the basics of physics and coding, read science textbooks, and study design to help with her creations.
Young people in Mexico have been traditionally served by the public education system and often don’t have access to new technology and ICT education. This access gap is exacerbated among lower socioeconomic classes, which seldom enjoy the tools and curricula offered by schools in more affluent areas. In addition, Mexico ranks last among OECD member nations in household access to broadband Internet.
Mexico City is dense urban area with large parts of the population living in vulnerable communities (C-, D & E Mexican socioeconomic classes are below the urban poverty line). The youth living in these areas have been traditionally served by the public education system, which is underfunded and cannot give them access to access to new technology and much-needed ICT skills to compete with more privileged youth from private schools in other areas of the city.
We believe that by installing Solar Learning Labs, we can benefit the community, by giving them access to quality learning experiences promoting STEM subjects & ICT for children and youth.
Within the lab, we will be teaching the children and adults in groups of 20; they will study ICT and robotics, programming, mechanics and many other available courses in our curricular proposal, for example, entrepreneurship, coding, servers maintenance and English to name a few.
The new lab in Mexico will be the country’s second, after one at an elementary school in Mexico City. The current lab offers ICT training and STEM education to kids and adults in the community, as well as a broad curriculum that includes robotics, entrepreneurship and life skills.
The 2018 study “Contextual Attribute Variables in the Use of ICT in Primary Level Students from Southern Sonora, Mexico” (Mortis-Lozoya, S. V; Tánori-Quintana, J; Angulo-Armenta, J; et al.) found that you were more likely to use ICT in primary school if you attended a private school. The self reported study showed that of students who identified themselves as not using ICT, 86.2% were attending a public school as opposed to the 13.8% who were attending a private school.
On the 28th of January the deployment of a double Solar Learning Lab began at Escuela secundaria profesor Roberto Ruiz Llanos.
Artist Alejandro Díaz has created an interactive mural for the lab. With all our labs, we employ a local artist to create a fun, bright and engaging mural. We believe this helps to make the lab feel more like part of the local community and makes it more inviting, especially to the younger users. We work with local artists to make sure the mural design reflects elements of the area and culture. This is our first mural which will have a digital interaction element to it, here our local artist Alejandro Diaz explains his process of creating the design.