More than 500 children have been educated and exposed to the concept of Science Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) during a maiden edition of STEAMFest 2022.
The event, organised by the PM STEAM Educational Centre in Accra, brought together more than 10 organisations in the STEAM sector to showcase and educate children and parents on the concept of STEAM.
It was on the theme; “Embracing the STEAM concept”.
Children from the ages of three were taken through activities such as robotics, 3D printing, virtual reality, electronics, painting, craft work and aviation; which includes flying a plane virtually and flying a drone.
The Founder and Chief Executive Officer of PM STEAM Educational Centre, Ohemaa Agyei Andoh, told the Daily Graphic that the event was also aimed at promoting STEAM education in the country.
She noted that the unique feature of the festival was the involvement of the parents to expose them to help them identify the different organisations available to help groom their children's logical thinking, problem-solving and communication skills.
“We got the parents involved so that we can take them through hands-on activities and also connect them to organisations in the STEAM sector. There is this perception out there that STEAM is difficult and boring; it is not and that is why we are trying to show the fun,” she added.
The Founder of Makers Place, Douglas Tetteh, who took the children through robotics using project-based learning said it was crucial to educate children on STEAM at a young age, noting that would prepare them to help solve the science and engineering-related problems in the country.
“We provide skills development of young people from age four; we are currently working with international schools and hoping to work with the government schools. We believe that the best approach is to go to the basic level because that is where the decisions are made. If we wait till the children get to the universities, we might not get the needed results,” he said.
He noted that their programmes were in line with the government’s policy of enhancing skills and STEM education in the country.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Pegasus Aviation Academy, Victor Pul, who also took some of the children through a system to demystify aviation, advised young people to pursue aviation-related careers.
“I am a pilot but growing up, I did not have this kind of opportunity, so we have young people who do not have this kind of opportunity believing that aviation is distant or impossible; that is why we are here to get them to know bits and parts of the aircraft.
“Our aim is to simplify the science and art to aviation. We now have some kids on our programme who can turn on the simulators by themselves and take you through an entire flight,” he said.
At the event, he allowed the children to experiment on a flight simulator to have a feel of flying a plane and also taught them how to fly a drone.