How can Schools Implement AI and Coding in their Curriculum?
The time is not far when only grad students were given the opportunity to explore AI and coding. In 2021, you can see little 8th graders talking about coding platforms and websites. The times have changed in the blink of an eye. And the present makes us opportune enough to make this generation up the pedestal not many were allowed to be on. As we all know, studying AI and coding seemed a far-fetched idea 10-15 years ago.
AI and coding have the potential to do the work any human of any skill cannot do. A person who can work with coding is a lot more valuable than someone who can do only manual tasks. A report by McKinsey Global Institute says AI and coding are potent enough to displace up to around 800 million jobs in the next 10 years.
Coding helps in the development of ideas which therefore boosts analytic thinking and the creativity of an individual. And with creativity, also enhances their imagination which in the end gives birth to new and innovative ideas to help make the world a better place- to redefine the industrial jobs. And while they work on AI, through coding they also develop their logical and analytical thinking.
Let’s just go back a few decades. The industry was not so developed. And people didn’t see AI and coding in India as a means to enhance our living as much as they do now. We lacked resources and more in adapting to change. Moreover, they didn’t see the need to adopt machine learning and AI, especially for the students in their teenage years.
And yet we have evolved. We now realize the need and have already started working on it. There exist multiple platforms available for students to coding, that are easy to understand and to work with. Take Pictoblox as an example; it is convenient even for children, you can learn to coding with Scratch, the most popular block-based coding language for kids in the world.
Various STEM education-based companies have come forward to provide resources to children in India so that they can get ready for the advanced world in the most fun way possible. Even a few decades ago there were companies promoting this idea, but there weren’t many people wanting to change for the sake of the advanced future we are gradually becoming a part of. Multiple STEM education solutions like STEMpedia have come forward to encourage children to develop themselves to coding, to provide them the requisite skills to thrive in the future.
As the people are aware of the necessity of machine learning and AI through coding, the Indian government realizes this need too. To meet the needs of students there have been certain changes in the education policy. They have issued a set of subjects students can opt for under the professional studies section as their skill subject. Artificial Intelligence has been there for quite a while, but as of now, Coding is also one of them. As per the New Education Policy, students can study Artificial Intelligence and Coding as their skill subjects.
CBSE has officially held to the changes. Gradually every school is adopting the new policy. And the schools are now appointing staff for this. Professionally trained teachers and coaches are being appointed whether it is for proper classes or clubs for Artificial Intelligence or Coding in the schools. And as a result, the number of students participating in various competitions and Olympiads in these two fields has increased greatly.
Under Atal Innovation Mission and the vision to create at least ‘one million children in India as Neoteric Innovators’, the government has been opening Atal Tinkering Laboratories (ATLs) across the country to promote machine learning through AI and coding. The objectives of this scheme are to generate creativity and imagination in students and inculcate skills that are going to come in handy in the future. If you want to open an AI lab in your school or academy, you can read the ATL Handbook to know more about it.
To avail maximum help regarding this, one can also visit STEMpedia’s page about ATLs to know more about the products and packages we are offering to ensure development in students is started from an early age. We even have packages for kids studying in upper primary standard. From projects to STEM curriculum to the basic steps to coding, we have it all.
Initiatives to encourage AI and coding
The Indian government has outlaid some initiatives to boost awareness and encourage machine learning in the country. One such initiative is the Responsible AI for Youth. It is a nationwide program aiming at empowering and encouraging the young generation to be ready for the advanced future.
The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) is preparing a proper curriculum framework for the National Education Policy 2020 and will be initiating proper measures for AI and coding at the secondary level.
Goa will be applying this to their schools this 2021 only. Class 6-8 curriculum in Goa will have coding and robotics from 2021, the state government announced. All this comes under CM-CARES, the scheme which has allocated a budget of Rs. 25 Crore for the schools starting in accordance with it.
Atal Innovation Mission is so rife in our country as of now. Around 8,700+ AT labs are opened in the country. This mission is spread across 34 states and UTs spanning over 722 districts. 5000 mentors are engaged in this mission with 70 Lakh+ students engaging in ATLs and have created 1.8 Lakh+ Innovation Projects.
Challenges that can get in the way
One of the challenges people often feel while studying AI and coding is the lack of resources. In the past, this was the challenge that led to ignorance of the potential it holds. But, the times have changed for the better. STEMpedia offers Multiple kits, projects, and engaging courses so that there is no restraining to learning and growth. There exist many competitions and contests through which students can also win exciting prizes, scholarships, medals, certificates, and more.
In a Nutshell
AI and coding have developed to be a need of students for a decade or so. The world was a different place back then, but now there are more opportunities in these fields than there are in any field of study or job. People have realized this need and so has the government leading to multiple projects and initiatives led by the government as well as by private corporations. Working and studying in AI and coding increases one’s creativity and imagination with curiosity and analytic thinking, which comes very handy and in the future will be the necessity to survive in every sector, as our country moves forward with more advanced technology.