Day two of the Making Innovators August 2019 Kids Edition kicked off in a slightly higher gear than the first day. The kids were rejuvenated after a wonderful introduction into the Design Thinking stages and the August challenge – the solar oven.
Unlike in day one where the kids covered the Empathy and Definition stages, day two ushered in the technical part of the challenge which consisted of the introduction to the Physics of Energy and the Ideation stage.
Physics of Energy
Physics is a technical branch of science which is usually associated with the post primary levels of education and rarely with the young kids. However, introducing kids as young as 6 years of age to such concepts, especially in relation to Design Thinking, catalyses their way of thinking.
The kids learnt the meaning of heat, various forms of heat transfer; conduction, radiation and convection in addition to the source of fire.
Speaking during the session, Peter Oketch who doubles as a tutorial fellow in the Department of Physics at the University of Nairobi stated that despite the mentality by the ancient Greeks that fire alongside earth, air and water were elements, physics has proved that fire comes from a chemical reaction between oxygen and some sort of fuel.
Oketch conversely explained to the kids the various principles of the solar oven which included concentration of sunlight, conversion of light to heat as well as trapping of heat.
Learning seemed to take a dramatic turn with the Ideation stage of Design Thinking being the apotheosis of the day.
Facilitated by Anne Atambo, the kids explored on how to come up with ideas with an aim of coming up with a more innovative solar oven.
With her famous rule for ideation “Everything goes!” She appealed to the kids together with their various mentors to come up with diverse ideas of how the solar ovens should be structured.