12-year-old Shani Majumdar has been having fun with his smartphone. Surprisingly, his parents are okay with his constant focus on the 6-inch screen, in fact, on a particular smartphone app. The source of Shani’s digital engagement is none other than Thinkster Math, an application available on handheld devices and the computer.
Thinkster Math helps Shani learn simple math problems creatively using images and easy-to-understand diagrams. Behind the scenes, an artificial intelligence tutor keeps an eye on Shani’s progress and guides him when he is facing difficulties. Thinkster Math is the result of introducing innovation in the field of education, dubbed education technology (often shortened to edtech).
One of the pioneers of edtech in India, Shantanu Prakash, the founder of Educomp, reveals that edtech is imperative for the Indian education. Smart classes in India are filled with smart boards, interactive projectors, virtual reality, digital camera, graphic tablets, and more. Using these tools, educators are adopting new and effective teaching methods.
The only drawback is the misuse of the tools. The spirit of teaching should not be replaced with the hollow binary fervor and headache-inducing long-term exposure to screens.
Making education accessible for children throughout the country is also a grand task. Promoting innovation in the education sector is critical for India as it provides opportunities for the betterment of other industries, including health and economy. Hopefully, by 2020, the edtech industry will be worth more than $9 billion. If that happens, the future of our children is secure.