The State school education department in India and a private VR and AR startup have launched Meta Kalvi, a programme under which VR labs were created in two corporation schools and three government schools in the Triplicane constituency.
Launched at Lady Willingdon College (pictured) in the virtual presence of DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi and CM MK Stalin, the new initiative aims to help students visualise theoretical concepts as well as easily understand them.
Both Dayanidhi Maran, Chennai’s Central MP, School Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi and Chepauk-Triplicane MLA Udhayanidhi Stalin were present at the event.
Meynikara founder R Raghuraman said, “The lessons that are currently available in VR mode include a composition of rockets, solar system, galaxies, atomic structure and other molecules. Students can perform exercises such as assembling the rockets themselves after each lesson in virtual reality. After getting feedback from these five schools, the project will be expanded to other schools.”
The project will see to the conversation of science and math lessons for Classes VI to VIII into virtual reality modules that will be taught in both English and Tamil language. Meynikara is a VR and AR startup based out of Chennai that has helped the education department launch the project under its CSR initiative.
Initially, 20 VR headsets with joysticks were provided to the five schools, and the headsets all came with six inbuilt modules, three each in science and maths.
Christina, a Class 8 student of Lady Willingdon Government Higher Secondary School commended, “We were able to see the solar system close. We could even zoom and see the number of rings on planets. It was a new experience for us and we were able to understand them better.”
The project is expected to deliver enhanced learning to interested students. Co-founder of Meynikara, Ganeshram said, “What is difficult now is not teaching but kindling the interest of students and building their creativity. We hope this project will reduce the dropout rate.”
Although the project kicked off in one constituency, the school education department focuses on improving STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education as well as extending the project across the State, said Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi who also urged private firms to sponsor VR labs in government schools.
Udhayanidhi Stalin stated, “From Periyar to Anna to Karunanidhi and Stalin, the one thing they taught us is to take education to underprivileged. That is what we are following. We are happy this initiative is started in a government school.”
The Meta Kalvi project aims to revolutionise the learning experience of students. Private schools are also expected to waste no time embracing technology.