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StoryWeaver (www.storyweaver.org.in), an initiative of Pratham Books, a not-for-profit publisher, has launched the STEM Literacy Programme to enable children to discover STEM concepts through the magic of stories.
Pratham Books STEM Literacy Programme Launched on StoryWeaver
India’s National Achievement Survey (NAS 2017) indicates that in Grade 3, only about 50% of students are above the basic levels of achievement in Maths, Science and Environmental Sciences (EVS), with the number getting progressively lower through Grades 5 and 8. The deep learning losses due to the pandemic have brought down the national average scores compared to 2017.
India’s National Education Policy 2020 emphasises the importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) skills and capacities, including scientific temper, evidence-based thinking and logical reasoning and the development of the creative potential of everyone. The need to nurture necessary STEM abilities at the primary grades, without expensive infrastructure requirements, is paramount.
This need is felt at a global level too. 2022 is the International Year of ‘Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development. UNESCO is highlighting the importance of giving children access to quality science education from an early age, to encourage them to ‘develop curiosity‘ and ‘value the quest for truth’ – vital not only from an academic perspective, but for personal growth as well.
As a response, Pratham Books StoryWeaver has launched a STEM Literacy Programme which aims at sparking discovery and engagement across a broad range of STEM topics through the power of storybooks. The programme is a rich teacher resource centered around 200+ storybooks for Grades 1 to 5, with national curriculum-aligned topics, structured lesson plans, engaging activities and teacher training resources. In addition to English, the programme will soon be available in Hindi, Marathi, Urdu and Odia. The programme is freely accessible online on StoryWeaver here – bit.ly/3OOB3Wq.
Purvi Shah, Senior Director – StoryWeaver and Strategy, Pratham Books, says, “At Pratham Books StoryWeaver, we have a strong belief in the potential of story-based learning and the immense value that stories can add to a classroom. The STEM Literacy Programme uses storybooks as a learning tool to bring alive Science, EVS, and Maths concepts in engaging ways, and planting these concepts in a relatable world that children can understand, imagine, and enjoy. STEM literacy helps cultivate a certain way of thinking, observing, and problem solving, which can help young learners in all areas of life. As we try to mitigate the learning losses of the pandemic, we must help our children develop a STEM mindset and nurture the next generation of responsible citizens, problem solvers and change makers. And how wonderful it would be if we can inspire them with a story!”
StoryWeaver (www.storyweaver.org.in) is an open source digital platform of multilingual children’s storybooks from Pratham Books. On StoryWeaver users can read, create, translate, download, print and share stories for free! By creating a collaborative framework where the creators and consumers of children’s content can interact with one another, StoryWeaver attempts to address the scarcity of books for children. StoryWeaver was launched in 2015 with 800 books in 24 languages. Today, the platform offers over 48,000 books in 329 languages, garnering more than 20 million reads.
Pratham Books STEM Literacy Programme is free to use on StoryWeaver, here.
About Pratham Books
Pratham Books (www.prathambooks.org) is a not-for-profit children’s book publisher founded in 2004 with the mission to see ‘a book in every childs hand‘. Its key objective is to publish good quality, affordable storybooks in multiple languages to support reading acquisition among children.