The times are changing and education needs to change with it. Nowadays, robotics is taking over much of the automated industry, and hence it is getting more and more important to make it a part of the regular education. With that thought in mind, the Niti Aayog has started a drive to implement Atal Tinkering Labs all around the country.
The full form of ATL is Atal Tinkering Lab, which is a part of the Atal Innovation Mission by the Niti Aayog. Each ATL is basically a workspace where our youngsters can learn science and technology in a modernistic hands-on approach with robotics lab equipment. The idea behind this is to induce scientific, logical, design and execution oriented thinking in children that promotes a self-reliant approach.
ATL tinkering labs teach young students innovation and technology through do-it-yourself kits and similar ATL lab equipment. Here, children get to learn concepts of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) using various tools and equipment that results in things that actually do something meaningful and useful on some level.
The primary goal of ATL is to build machines that use scientific concepts through DIY kits and other equipment on electronics, robotics, microcontrollers, sensors, 3D printers, computers, etc. ATL Lab instructors should encourage students to build on their own while providing basic working principles and other needful support. Students should try their best to come up with ideas of machines that accomplish some goal.
Any and all schools implementing an ATL lab will need to purchase items as per the AIM provided guidelines. Here is a basic list of items you will need to get to run an Atal tinkering lab.
The equipment list for ATL is divided into four parts, part 1 to 4. Here are their descriptions.
For a detailed list of Atal Tinkering Lab equipment, please refer to the AIM website.
Technically speaking, any school teaching classes VI to X can apply for an ATL lab. But that doesn’t mean they will get one. To apply for an ATL lab, the school will need to fill out an online application form and submit it online, at the AIM (Atal Innovation Mission) web portal.
In the next step, AIM tests the school body and infrastructure mercilessly for a screening. It is a rigorous challenge-based selection process that is frankly tough to go through. If your school manages to pass the test, that’s not enough. After you get notified of selection, you will need to submit all required documentation and complete PFMS (Public Finance Management System) compliance procedure.
Once these are done, the school can now get the government grant of 20 lakh rupees to establish an Atl tinkering lab inside their premises. The grant is split into two equal parts ‒ the first half is meant to pay for the establishment of the lab, and the second half would go towards the recurring maintenance costs of the labs.
To establish an ATL in your school, you will need to execute the following internally:
After you set up the ATL lab, use the help of the AAC to run it fluidly and properly.
ATL labs, or Atal Tinkering Labs aim to provide a secure workspace for youngsters across the country where they can learn technological skills and create various machines and devices of their own ideas using a flexible and adaptive environment.
To grow as a knowledge economy, India must upgrade its youth to 21st Century skills of design-oriented thinking, problem solving, critical analysis, and innovative creativity. The vision of AIM, creators of ATLs, is to “Cultivate one Million children in India as Neoteric Innovators” and Labkafe stands firm behind the idea.
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