Last November, Ludhiana (Punjab)-based early teens education evangelist Namya Joshi (13) met her “Skype students” — directors and principals of Finnish schools — for the first time at the Poke Vocational College, Aanekoski (Finland), where she was invited to deliver a lecture on gamification of elementary and high school education. However, Namya took this invitation to meet with accomplished education practitioners in the Mecca of school education in her stride.
A class VII student of Ludhiana’s Sat Paul Mittal School — ranked Punjab’s #1 co-ed day school in the latest EW India School Rankings 2019-20 — young Namya has mastered Minecraft, a video game, to create ‘worlds’ or lessons and explain STEM and cyber-security concepts through storytelling.
The only child of IT entrepreneur Kunal and Monica Joshi, head of the IT cell of Sat Paul Mittal School, Namya was introduced to Minecraft by her mother at age ten (2016). Since then, this hyper-active teen has designed over 50 Minecraft lessons in science, maths and art. Every weekend, she conducts hour-long Skype classes for teachers in Russia, Finland, Hungary, Vietnam and across India to demonstrate Minecraft usage for creating lesson plans. Namya’s first tutorial video went viral on the popular Microsoft-supported ‘Skype in the Classroom’ community’s Facebook page which attracted this network of educators.
“I follow a strict timetable and devote 30 minutes a day to prepare lessons on Minecraft. As a committed supporter of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals initiative, I believe gamification can greatly contribute to achieving the SDGs, and in particular SDG4 which is quality education for all,” says the young crusader, whose Minecraft lesson on the Ramayana, has won her plaudits from around the country.
Looking ahead, young Namya is clear about how she will take her mission forward. “Over the next few years, I plan to sharpen my technical skills and create lessons on a wide variety of subjects. My ultimate dream is to work with tech giants Microsoft and Google and revolutionise K-12 education through technological innovations,” she says.
Way to go, Sis!
Shraddha Goled (Bangalore)