Published: 15th September 2021
If all things space have your attention, Navars Edutech has some very interesting courses to offer
Hyderabad-based Navars Edutech is all set to offer courses on everything related to astronomy and this is what makes their proposition unique and different from everyone else out there right now
When you look up at the sky, what do you wonder? About life's existential questions? Or do your thoughts take a more scientific trajectory, thinking about the Sun, Moon, stars and beyond? If it's the former, God help you, but if it's the latter, Navars Edutech has some fascinating astronomy and space education-related courses to offer. "There have been significant efforts made by NITI Aayog and the National Education Policy in the realm of astronomy education and, of course, there has always been curiosity around the subject from the children's side. So, we want to bridge astronomy and real life and all our 27 courses — for students from classes II to XII — strive to do just that," says Dinesh Prasad, the Director of the start-up that came into existence in October 2019.
They have also set up astronomy labs, conducted workshops and taken kids to observatories
But instead of recorded content and mass webinars, this Hyderabad-based company follows a more instructor-led and small focus group-centred educational approach in batches of not more than 15 to 20. Actual hands-on, experiment-like assignments take precedence and help children understand the subject matter much better. Their DIY kits deserve a special mention here, "We offer over 30 STEM-based kits, some of which are a part of our curriculum, while others are standalone. They are designed to lend a more practical flavour to all that we teach. Expect kaleidoscope-making, creating a mini-explosion effect, understanding how to launch a DIY rocket, how to make telescopes, binoculars and a whole lot more."
Initially started out as a portable planetarium (five to eight metres in size) to offer an immersive planetarium-like experience in school, Navars, whose CEO is Sravan Datla, also conducts the National Astronomy and Science Olympiad (NASO) and has seen cumulative participation of 1,00,000 students from 13 countries in four years (before launching the start-up formally, all their offerings were via independent companies). "We were already offering courses at the school level and were able to transition to virtual education easily. Today, we work with over 1,000 schools in India," says the director who hails from Delhi but is now in Hyderabad.
They have offered +1,00,000 hours of training till date
Courses are divided as per age groups — children from ages two to four take up Young Astronomer courses, five to eight-year-olds take Junior Astronomers and nine to twelve-year-olds go for Space Explorer courses. The courses are usually for one hour, five days a week and extend from 7 to 48 days. From asteroids and comets to star-gazing and everything in between, there is a lot to learn. Students who are serious about astronomy have even stuck with them for seven to eight years. That's the power of the six-member educator team hailing from bigwigs like ISRO and NASA. They also have 60 part-time educators who take classes. Having impacted over 10,000 students, they hope to become India's top astronomy school.
For more on them check out navarsedutech.com