Robotics for Sustainable Development

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are central to accelerating achievement of United Nations Agenda 2030 and particularly the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  The UN recognizes technology as a cross-cutting ‘means of implementation,’ underpinning the achievement of every goal.

Recognizing the centrality of STEM, the Arigatou International SDGs Academy for Children in partnership with the Kenya Flying Labs facilitated a 3-part learning series on Robotics and Sustainable Development. This learning sessions involved 27 children accompanied with parents, caregivers, and teachers at the Academy’s physical hub in Limuru, Kenya.

The learning sessions used the Twin Science Curriculum by WeRobotics to introduce the children to robotics, life sciences, coding and how they could develop robots to aid in actions towards implementing the SDGs.

I have learnt that robotics is important in our lives; for example, in treating patients in hospitals” Jonathan, 10-year-old participant.

Throughout the sessions, children were enlightened on how science and technology was important towards achieving the SDGs and how they could use available technology and through knowledge gained to contribute to that achievement.

Activities during the learning and practical sessions involved building knowledge about robotics as part of STEM, how to make robots, how they work, coding and operating household robots and drones. Extra learning activities like outdoor games and watching movies such as “the boy who harnessed the wind” to discuss SDGs 1 (No Poverty), 2 (Zero Hunger), 4 (Quality Education), 6 (Clean Water & Sanitation), 7 (Clean and Affordable Energy), and 13 (Climate Action) further made it easier and fascinating in entrenching the skills gained with regards to actualizing the SDGs.

The SDGs Academy for Children prides in providing a safe space for children in building a sustainably developed worlds for all children” Michael Adikwu, Lead, SDGs Academy for Children, Arigatou International.

The Arigatou International SDGs Academy for Children uses the Global Development Education (GDE) and Transformative Pedagogy methods to deliver learning, skills and practical actions for children to internalize and contribute towards implementation of the SDGs.

Prior to this 3-part learning sessions, we have been partnering with the Kenya Flying Labs in delivering similar tech-oriented trainings for children at the Academy. We are also partnering with the Kenya Flying Labs in establishing SDGs Clubs in schools in Kenya.

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