Sakhikamva Foundation partners with Polyoak Packaging Group to open a 4IR STREAM lab for primary school
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A collaboration between Sakhikamva Foundation and local business sponsor Polyoak Packaging Group has led to an opening of a 4IR STREAM laboratory Silverlea Primary school in the Western Cape.
According to Sakhikamva Foundation, the launch is part of an ongoing roll-out of STREAM (Science, Technology, Robotics, Engineering, Aeronautics, and Mathematics) laboratories that were igniting coding and robotics learning in SA schools.
Sakhikamva Foundation describes itself as a non-profit organisation focused on skills development of youth and children in the 4iR context.
The company said Silverlea is the first primary school to have been fitted with a fully equipped 40-person tech laboratory. The lab is set to promote hands-on development skills for the pupils.
Sakhikamva Foundation founder Fatima Jakoet said the laboratory would stimulate an environment for the development of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics skills for pupils.
“The classroom is furnished with technologically advanced equipment such as robotics, 3-D printers, drones, AI kits, engineering and science kits. For the educators and learners at Silverlea Primary this will ensure that their children, from Grades R to 7, can develop essential skills in artificial intelligence, design thinking, robotics, coding, aviation, and space science,” she said.
Polyoak Packaging Group managing director Jeremy Mackintosh said: “We’re delighted to be part of this initiative that helps to prepare the children of Silverlea Primary for a future driven by technology. Too often, children from under-resourced communities get left behind in education, which has lifelong impacts.
“We hope that the school’s new STREAM laboratory will open up many opportunities for their children to unlock their talents and take their places as future change agents and problem-solvers,” he said.
Principal, Sharon Coetzee, said the laboratory would promote a learning environment for kids who have talent beyond the traditional curriculum.
“We are very excited and grateful for this wonderful opportunity and investment bestowed on us by the Sakhikamva Foundation and Polyoak Packaging Group. We will be able to lay the foundation for Coding and Robotics at the primary school level so that our kids will have programming skills that will make them eligible for high schools, offering continuing education in the tech and IT field.”
She added that other benefits come with the laboratory.
“Hands-on learning activities will help improve concentration levels; the laboratory environment will promote a culture for teamwork, and grappling with a curriculum such as robotics will evoke important qualities such as perseverance. Overall, our learners will now have a fantastic chance to be more prepared for the technological changes in the world,” she said.
According to Sakhikamva Foundation, it has previously opened STREAM laboratories at Lanseria Airport in Gauteng, Get Ahead College in the Eastern Cape, and Goodwood College in Cape Town.