What do DevNet STEAM, IoT, drones and kids of all ages all have in common? Imagination and the possibility of making big things happen. Cisco DevNet is bringing great IoT workshop and demo to upcoming Bay Area Maker Faire on May 20-22.
I am a regular at Maker Faire Bay Area, but in 2015 I was super excited to be there as an exhibitor with my son Omkar. He had come up with a great product idea for kids, a programmable smartwatch kit to help them learn programming easily and we were selected out of 2000 applications to showcase his product. It looked like that the event had spread excitement like pixie dust on everyone, on every exhibitor, on every visitor, every family, and every kid. There is something contagious about this experience full of creativity, science, technology and making what you love. It is like dream come true for every STEAM/STEM educator and everyone trying to understand how to get next-generation more involved is solving real-life problems and to drive innovations.
At this event, I had chance to speak to a Arizona State University research team who was interested in learning how families of young makers support their kids and if there is something different in the upbringing that drives them. One question that has been in my mind since then is “What does engineering and STEAM means to me?”. I do not have a degree in engineering, but grew up always making a lot of projects be it for the science fair or workshop at the local science museum or just during the summer breaks. For me, most of the learning was by actually doing things and making projects applying the concepts of science, technology, engineering, art, and math.
I grew up on an academic campus in India, where true knowledge is literally worshipped in a temple that not only has all gods and goddesses of every religion, but they share this temple with statues of 100s of scientists, thinkers, philosophers, and artists who changed the course of life for all the humankind. I still remember spending my time staring at statues of a few great thinkers and inventors like Gandhi, Edison, Newton, and Madame Curie. This was a continuous reminder to all pupils to not only learn from our school education, but to be curious, to be an agent of change, to follow our heart and to make that change happen.
To make STEAM real for every kid, engineering and making should become part of life. STEAM and the Maker movement are really this combination of knowing your principals of science, technology, engineering, art and math, and further applying it to make this world a better place. So centuries later when the next generations of humankind are ready to worship their gods, they create a place in their temple to worship scientist, thinker, innovators, artists, and leaders of today.
Let’s Get There Together
To continue to drive this STEAM movement, I would like to invite you to help us build the Cisco DevNet STEAM community. DevNet STEAM is a community to keep every kid curious, thinking, making magic happen with the learning of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics. Come join us at Bay Area MakerFaire on May 20-22nd at San Mateo County event center and learn what is IoT is and how connected things like Drones and Collaboration devices and changing the world. Kids of all ages will also have chance to join a quick workshop to build their first IoT application.