Make Atal Tinkering Labs Fully Functional, Singh Tells Teachers

Head, Education Planning Monitoring and Management (EPM&M), Riyaz Ahmad Dar, explaining to the participants the importance of ATLs in cultivating scientific temper among students.

SCERT gears up to respond to the call, holds workshop

By Farooq Shah

SRINAGAR- Principal Secretary, Department of School Education, B K Singh, Thursday, asked teachers to fully prepare themselves to make Atal Tinkering Labs fully functional while asserting that scientific temper is essential for fostering a progressive society and advancing the nation in all sectors.

Atal Tinkering Labs (ATL), the government of India’s flagship program, is run by the NITI Aayog and is a part of the Atal Innovation Mission, which aims to encourage an imaginative mindset among high school students all over the nation.

Singh, who holds an additional charge as Director State Council of Education Research and Training (SCERT), J&K, said the ATLs can prove to be the best breeding grounds for the young minds to cultivate a scientific inquiry and invention among students.

“Children by nature are inquisitive; they frequently ask questions and are interested in how things operate,” he said. “This outlook on life needs to be fostered, supported, and encouraged throughout the educational system.”

Principal Secretary, B K Singh, giving away certificate of participation to the students who put up a science model exhibition at SKICC on Wednesday.

In response, the SCERT held a daylong workshop on Thursday inviting representatives from District Institutes of Education (DIET) and schools to find out why ATLs have not yet been used to their full potential.

Senior Academic Officer at SCERT Srinagar, Dr Saima Qadir, while giving details of the workshop said the full-scale implementation of the ATLs was the Council’s topmost priority.

The goal of today’s workshop, according to Dr. Qadir, was to educate and empower the ATL representatives from the districts while also getting their feedback.

“We are gathering data from our 67 ATLs across the Division and will shortly develop a functional plan to make them fully operational,” she said.

Associate Professor SCERT, Fayaz Ahmad Fayaz, said the SCERT would rope in experts and professionals from National Institute of Technology (NIT), Polytechnic institutions, Universities etc to enrich the capacities of the ATL staff.

If necessary, Fayaz continued, “We will get in touch with the NITI Aayog and urge them to depute professionals to train the ATL personnel.

“No matter what, we’ll get these laboratories up and running quickly,” he assured.

On April 9, 2021, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) decided to adopt 295 Atal Tinkering Labs (ATLs) across the country in an effort to promote a culture of scientific inquiry and creation among students. Students at these ATLs will have access to top CSIR scientists and researchers as mentors and resources.

Lieutenant Governor, J&K, Manoj Sinha had laid the foundation of 500 ATLs across the Union Territory when he inaugurated several key initiatives of the education sector at SKICC on Wednesday.

Sinha talked about a ‘profound’ paradigm change that would have an impact on every aspect of our lives and the entire globe, forcing ‘us to reconsider our preexisting ideas’.

“We need a robust strategy to prepare our children for the future,” Sinha had said.

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