On a sunny day, one of our teams picked up the Wow shows kit from Dharohar office and went on a scheduled school visit in Manva Kheda government school. The programme tries to reach out to school kids with cool, simple science experiments that make kids go And then the point is to make them think what exactly happened? Why did I feel so surprised?
While practising for the shows, a volunteer might think that these experiments are trivial and what is really the point of performing them? Like bursting a balloon with an orange peel juice isn‘t really profound science for an engineer. Still this team put a lot of effort and imagination to improve the story and dialogues to make the story funny and really easy to understand. We enact stories and perform simple experiments. Kids realise that everything that they see around them is caused by some scientific reason; from the moon going around the earth to curd forming out of milk, or the rainbow in the sky, all because of science!
Volunteers reached the school and guess what, bumped into the District Development Officer for Girwa, Udaipur. When she saw the material kit, she couldn’t resist asking about it. “What‘s all this material for? What are you planning to do with vinegar and drinking soda?”
The volunteers explained the experiment and the way they are going to perform them. District officer immediately realized the purpose of these experiments and how they can be really relevant for a 9-year-old. She was really impressed with the idea. She connected it to the idea of using rational thinking as a counter to superstitious/ irrational thinking; the kind of thinking that is prevalent in remote areas of Udaipur. This gave the volunteers a deeper insight into the impact of our work. It is not merely showing experiments but it’s the way we show them also. We are wrapping scientific concepts in small stories to make them stick in kids‘ head. What is the story of apple falling on Newton’s head related to? Get my point? What message are we really trying to deliver through this? One of the team members Shubhendu even said, “Now I realise that sparking curiosity is much deeper than I thought, the kind of thinking that we venture into once we are curious is really exciting!”