Convergent Labs to Facilitate Research Activities Among 7th-11th Grade Students

Deadline
1 june 2019

Moscow's School No. 1535 and the Moscow Agency of Innovations announce an open challenge for innovative solutions that will help create convergent laboratories for 7th-11th grade students.

School No. 1535 was established in 1991 as an experimental lyceum under Moscow State University's Institute of Asian and African Studies. Since 2011, the school has been placed first in the ranking of the Moscow Department of Education.

The school is among the city's top language schools. It provides students with a wide range of options, including math and economics classes at the Higher School of Economics, psychology classes at Moscow State University, medicine and biology classes at the Sechenov University. Special emphasis  programs focus on history, philology, and social sciences. Supplementary education options cover technology, sports, natural sciences, and creative arts.

As a long-time leader in Moscow's education, School No. 1535 is interested in including research-based learning methodologies in the educational process in order to create a continuous convergent education system in natural sciences. A great deal of research today is taking place at the intersection of various subject areas, such as physics, informatics, computer programming, robotics, math, astronomy, prototyping, and 3D modeling. At schools, these disciplines are taught independently of each other, therefore there is no common interdisciplinary ideology and integration that could facilitate continuous education and help students form a holistic view of the world.

In addition to knowledge, students need skills they could apply in the real life: participate in real research activities and work on personal projects that will help students chose a career path; gain communication skills, social interaction and adaptation experiences. These are the kinds of opportunities that can become available students with true living labs (interactive school labs) fitted out with advanced hi-tech equipment .

Here, convergence is viewed as

  • interpenetration and interinfluence of various subject areas;
  • a new science and technology paradigm based on the “big four” convergent technologies: information and communication, cognitive, bio and nano technologies.

 

Convergent education is a dedicated process of developing competencies necessary for living and working in the age of convergent sciences and technologies:

  • interaction of scientific disciplines (subject areas), first of all, in natural sciences;
  • implementation of interdisciplinary project and research practices;
  • interpenetration of science and technology.

 

This open challenge seeks to identify and test innovative solutions for a school of the future that will provide students with substantial research opportunities and bring them closer to future professional activities.

 

We welcome solutions that will help create favorable conditions for:

  • an interdisciplinary synthesis of hard and soft sciences;
  • refocusing educational activities from cognitive to project-driven activities;
  • fostering design thinking;
  • networking;
  • teaching various activities rather than just teaching subjects;
  • delivering “beyond-the-curriculum” knowledge via convergent technologies;
  • acquiring independent work skills.

 

Submitted solutions must meet the following requirements: 

  • comply with the fire and electrical safety regulations;
  • comply with the sanitary and hygienic standards for educational institutions;
  • protect children from harmful information;
  • take into account the needs and characteristics of school-age children;
  • be eligible for use in Moscow.

 

 

Outcome:

  • Top entries will be offered an opportunity to undergo a pilot project. At this stage, solutions/licenses (1 copy, subject to an additional agreement) should be provided free of charge for testing purposes.
  • Upon the successful completion of a pilot project, School No. 1535 will consider a follow-up implementation at its premises and provide recommendations on the further use of the tested solution in Moscow.