Std 8 Innovation Lab 2020

A Real Team Effort!

By Jeet Monani, Siddharth M Kothari & Veer Bhandary of Std 9 Nothing can stop the spirit of innovation as was seen in those participating in the SJBHS Std 8 Innovation Lab 2020.

Even though we had to face the consequences of COVID-19, we never gave up and made sure we conducted the kick-off session, that too online! This was only made possible by technology and the coordination of the teachers and the mentors with the judges, organising committee, students and the evaluators. Mr Vijay Nazareth, the architect of the programme invested his time in making this event a success. Each team was added in an individual WhatsApp group with their respective mentors and student mentors. The team members held meetings with the student mentors and the mentors using various online platforms such as Zoom, Google Meet etc.

We faced some hardships such as internet connection problems, lack of communication (sometimes the participants do not come online and miss important information/meetings) multiple logouts (which forces them to miss some pieces of information), lag in audio and many more, but we still overcame these hardships as the teammates efficiently coordinated between themselves and jotted down the points, so that the others could benefit from it.

This year there was a new addition - the concept of student mentors. Several of the participants of last year’s Innovation Lab wanted to join this year’s edition, so to allow for their participation, it was very kind of Vijay Sir to give them a different role as Student Mentors to guide their teams not only beneficial to the teams but also to the student mentors which gave them a different set of skills and they got to see a different side of the lab.

The lab kicked off with a motivating presentation on 2nd September which offered a wide variety of suggestions for topics on which students could base their projects. The Lab started strong with 7 teams (around 44 participants) as we sailed through 6 deliverables and many case studies that brought a great amount of value and learning to the students’ minds.

The team of judges included Ms Reshmi Iyer (also the teacher-in-charge), Mr Rajat Roy Choudhury (Josephite from 1978 batch) and Mr Vijay Alphonse (Josephite from 1990 batch). The moderator was Mr Samir Stewart (Josephite from 1989 batch). Mrs Reshmi Iyer made sure that nothing went wrong and we had an efficient flow. We would also like to thank the mentors (Mr. Arfath Pasha, Mr. Pradeep Menon, Mr. Girish Satya, Mr. Darshan Krishnappa, Mr. Jonathan Menezes, Mr. Praveen Rodrigues, and Mr. Jyotinath Ganguly) and the student mentors (Sudeep Xavier Roche, S.B. Karthik, Samay K.S., Jeet Monani, Siddharth M Kothari, Veer Bhandary and Karan Jain). Mr. Lloyd Lobo also helped us by leading the case study discussions.

This edition of Innovation Lab, we had the privilege to collaborate with Christel House. The mission of Christel House is to help children around the world break the cycle of poverty, realize their hopes and dreams and become self-sufficient, contributing members of society. Christel House Learning Centre joined the Innovation Lab simultaneously.

The case studies included various topics such as the study on single-use plastics with Mr. Arfath Pasha as the moderator, composting and global warming with Mr. Lloyd Lobo as the moderator, rainwater harvesting with Mrs. Marianne de Nazareth as the moderator, mental health with Ms. Shama Parkhe as the moderator, food security and nutrition with Mr. Vijay Nazareth and Mr. Sundar Kuppuswamy as co-moderators, and gender bias in STEM with Ms. Akhila Jayaram as the moderator.

Due to these case study discussions and the points given by the moderator thereby making the answers more descriptive and in-depth. The discussions of the case studies were enlightening and illuminating. We had lengthy discussions on the individual WhatsApp groups, with evaluators having special expertise in topics of the case studies.

The old boys and girls put in a lot of hard work and commitment to make this possible, giving the young innovators a stage to display their thoughts and futuristic ideas.

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