The Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development in collaboration with the Caribbean Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics organization (CariSTEM) this month hosted a week-long series of workshops in the use of Raspberry Pi devices for STEM learning and education.
This training with Raspberry Pi initiative was an effort to introduce the Raspberry Pi as one of the means of integrating technology in the classroom. Raspberry Pi Kits are relatively inexpensive at less than USD $100. The platform affords students the opportunity to explore several concepts in computer coding, engineering and mathematics in a very engaging and practical way. The workshops were attended by two students and one teacher from each secondary school on island. All secondary schools will be furnished with a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Starter Pack Kit.
CariSTEM is the brainchild of Dr. Nicholas St Hill. Part of the mission of CariSTEM is to promote the uptake of STEM courses among students. Dr. St Hill hopes that these workshops will help create more opportunities for students. He also looks forward to seeing more of these types of collaborations between professionals and experts in industry and the education sector. Professor Winston Sealy is the lead facilitator of the workshops. Prof. Sealy believes that the introduction of both teachers and students to the Raspberry Pi platform will help improve student motivation and success rates particularly in STEM areas. Both Dr. St Hill and Prof. Sealy are native Saint Lucians. Dr. St Hill runs his own technology company in the United Kingdom, specializing in instrument research and development and Prof. Sealy is a professor at Minnesota State University in the United States. Professor Sealy’s primary research consists of metrology, design, and automation of systems.
Germain Anthony, coordinator for the workshops and the Curriculum Specialist – Technology Integration, is confident that the effective integration of the Raspberry Pi platform in STEM learning will help students develop skills in collaboration, computer coding, critical thinking and design thinking.