Creative Learning

Starting the New Year with a New Workshop in Delhi

Rudrani Ghosh

We started off 2024 with a STEAM-based workshop in collaboration with the AmbaUjjwal Foundation in Delhi. We had been working with their children in online and offline hybrid mode for a while, but this was the first time all of us were meeting them in person. We began the new year with Unstructured Studio folks dressing up from head to toe in our warmest clothes and arriving at Patparganj, the community AmbaUjjwal Foundation has been serving for the last 25 years.

This time, we had 30 children, ranging from 5th to 8th grade, and we were super excited to meet and interact with them. All the kids belonged to low-income families in the neighborhood and would gather at the AmbaUjjwal community center once or twice a week for after-school activities. Our goal with them was to facilitate the Light Story Box activity (around making an interactive slide projector), have them document it on ZubHub, and explore and understand their reactions when they interact with ZubHub.

We started by showing the children the demo video and inviting them to draw parallels between the activity and things they might regularly interact with in their day-to-day lives.  They immediately recognized that it is similar to the projector they see being used at the centre, and could also connect this activity with movie screens. It was amazing to see how quickly they caught on to the concept and were ready to make their own Light Story Box. In order to foster collaboration, we divided them into two mixed-age groups of around 15 and asked them to decide amongst themselves who was going to create the projector and who would create the slides that would show the movie.

The goal of such an activity is to let kids explore a new, unique medium of storytelling, bring their own creative ideas to this medium, and explore it freely without any constraints on how the final “product” would look.

In the same spirit, we avoided giving them strict instructions and gently guided them when needed, mostly leaving them to their own devices. In the end, both groups finished on time and confidently showcased their projects in front of everyone. The first group chose to depict what their daily life at school is like, and the second group told us the age-old fable of the thirsty crow. We concluded the workshop by having them upload their creations on ZubHub. As this was our fifth workshop with them, they already had a clear idea of what the platform is. Two people from each group used the platform while everyone else circled around and watched.

We could not have asked for a better start to our year. It was lovely working together with the AmbaUjjwal Foundation, interacting with the children in their own space and watching them tinker and build their own creations based on our activity.

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