“This program is planned to be piloted in 33 schools across the country by the Ministry of Education. Eldorado Park is unfortunately not selected for this program. Therefore, in partnership with First Robotics SA, we have decided to present this program to the children of Eldorado Park via Eldos TV, ”said Alicia Solomons, coach of Eldorado Park First. Lego League robotics and coding program.
The 3 programs are as follows:
- The Discovery program is aimed at children aged 4 to 7 and is based on basic early childhood development learning. Activities motivate kids to explore science, technology, engineering, art, and math in fun ways.
- The Explore program is for children ages 7-9 and focuses on the fundamentals of engineering as they explore real-world problems, learn to design, code and solve problems. This improves the child’s ability in cognitive thinking.
- The Challenge program is aimed at children aged 10 to 16 and teaches the art of friendly competition. Kids will engage in research, problem solving, coding, engineering – building and programming a Lego robot that navigates the different missions of a robot game.
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Solomons and Randolph Yarrow, who coaches the Challenge program, said their free programs are held at Don Mateman Hall every Saturday. The program officially started on September 4 and is aimed at 54 children in the community.
Due to limited resources and coaches, the team has a growing waiting list every week. According to Solomons, all coaches have been trained by UNISA and have their coaching certificate.
“It’s a great program because it takes what kids don’t like to learn in school and makes it fun. It challenges children to solve problems, they have to think creatively. We thought the kids wouldn’t be as interested in it because of math and physics, but they keep coming every weekend, ”Solomons added.
After ten to twelve sessions, each age group will have a celebratory event where the children can show off what they have done, they will also receive certificates.
“The potential that we have seen in children is incredible. The kids are so excited they never want to leave our sessions, ”said Yarrow.
Some local businesses got involved and sponsor the kids with something to eat during the sessions and the team is now looking for more businesses to get involved. Next year the team would like to help in the different schools, maybe offer the programs as an additional mutual activity, that way they can accommodate more children.
“Most parents stay in the sessions to see what their children are doing; some will send us pictures and videos of their children at home doing projects. This program is developing faster than expected, but it is just amazing. We are encouraging more people, especially parents, to get involved and take the training, ”Solomons concluded.
If you want to know more about the programs, you can contact Alicia Solomons by email: [email protected], or 063 393 3301 or the Eldostv whatsapp number: 083 416 0733
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