Jaguar Primary Schools Challenge Takes-Off
Following a successful project facilitation and software training for teachers for the Jaguar Primary Schools Challenge during the month of October, two official races have taken place at Sci-Bono Discovery Centre in Johannesburg.
The Jaguar Primary Schools Challenge (JPSC) programme, facilitated by Sangari Education, saw 14 teams from various primary schools across Gauteng partake in the Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) challenge.
The Jaguar Primary School Challenge engages primary school students and teachers across South Africa in the same way as the F1 in School Challenge. The challenge is open to students aged 5-11 years and involves designing and manufacturing the fastest car possible, emulating the design and engineering processes employed by real engineering companies such as Jaguar Cars.
Each team designs an F1 racing car using 160gm/s cardboard paper created on 2D drawing software. After manufacturing teams race their cars on a 20 metre race track powered by gas chargers.
Pieter du Plessis, F1 in Schools programme manager at Sangari Education, the company responsible for bringing the challenge in South Africa, said: “At first it was a challenge getting both learner’s and teachers to buy into the concept of designing and racing a miniature F1 car. But the concept has now caught on and interest is growing rapidly.”
“The JPSC-F1 is literally STEM education in action. Teacher involvement is critical for learners, who need both emotional and physical support,” he said.
“The JPSC offers primary school pupils the opportunity to take part in a fun hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths) activity, tackling real-life problem solving, design, manufacturing, team work, communication and business skills.”
Teachers and parents’ involvement plays an integral part of the programme as it motivates children to maintain their focus and determination in the challenge. Participants represent schools in Johannesburg East and West, and as far as Winterveld in Hammanskraal as well as other regions in Gauteng,” added Mr du Plessis.
Christo Jones, deputy chief education specialist for Technology, Gauteng Department of Education said: “Partnering with Sangari Education to bring active STEM education to primary schools is a good starting point towards improving the education system in the country. Seeing young people design F1 model cars on computers, manufacture and then race them is really inspiring.”
Mr Tebalo Tsatsi, project coordinator from SAASTA, a partner with Sangari Education for the JPSC programme said: “Primary schools play an integral part in shaping and bringing out the best in a learner’s life. These learner’s need to be nurtured and guided in the direction of becoming future engineers, designers and architects. This programme is the stepping stone as it addresses this need to the core.”
The competition is open to all primary school children from grade 5 to grade 7. Teams wishing to be part of this competition can register on the website at: www.sangari.co.za or contact Pieter du Plessis on +27 11 466-1440.
Issued by: Sha-Izwe/CharlesSmithAssoc
ON BEHALF OF: Sangari Education
FURTHER INFORMATION: Charles Smith
TEL: (011) 781-6191
CELL: 083 469-7586
Pieter du Plessis
TEL: (011) 466 1440