Mentors, students, representatives of IRIM and HT
Today, Hrvatski Telekom (HT) and the Institute for Youth Development and Innovativity (IRIM) - Croatian Makers presented the largest national student project based on “Internet of Things” technology, entitled “Internet of Things (IoT) in Croatian Primary Schools 2016” that has been realised within the scope of the “Together We Are Stronger” donation contest by Hrvatski Telekom. The project was presented by Boris Drilo, Member of the Management Board and Chief Technical and Information Officer at Hrvatski Telekom and Nenad Bakić, co-founder of Croatian Makers.
The project involved more than 450 students from 55 elementary schools and associations from all over Croatia, providing them with access to advanced digital technologies such as IoT and Logo. In addition to the students, education on technologies that are becoming indispensable in the development of new products and services was also provided to more than 60 teachers in elementary schools throughout Croatia.
Under the guidance of their technology mentors, the second to eighth grade students have utilised such technologies for an innovative approach to finding solutions for real problems which they had identified by themselves in their environment. Within the scope of the project, more than 70 extremely interesting and innovative projects were developed, and more than 70 education material sets were developed that will be put to use by the mentors in their continued work with students.
The project continues, so that the workshops to be held in the forthcoming months in schools that had not been involved in the project so far will cover an additional number of approximately 400 elementary school students.
“At Hrvatski Telekom, we see it as a social responsibility to support digital transformation in a way to make it reinforce the potential of Croatia’s economic and social progress. There is no doubt that cutting-edge technologies and know-how from the STEM area are the generators of such progress, and thanks to this project, we managed to introduce both elements into our elementary schools, in a very practical way. The students’ creativity and innovativity in project design and development shows the potential which exists in our society” said Boris Drilo, Member of the Management Board and Chief Technical and Information Officer at Hrvatski Telekom.
At the project presentation, selected projects were presented by students and their mentors. The team from Savski Gaj Elementary School came up with a fully automated battery recycling container, a device that counts inserted batteries, thus supporting battery disposal and recycling, a process of great importance to environmental protection. The Dvor Elementary School, building on its own negative experience with flooding in its area, dealt with river water level measurement and a system for indication of rising water levels. The elementary school children from Dvor designed and created a fully functional water level monitoring and flood prevention device that will send a message in the case of rising water levels. The team at Stubičke Toplice Elementary School prepared a project about a buzzer for persons with hearing impairments, and other projects were also presented, based on Logo technology, showing how students, by working with computer algorithms, were able to produce, for instance, drawings of the Brod fortress, of miraculous polygon shapes, of a flower meadow and of a Probot.
A particular highlight was the collaboration project that brought together more than 35 elementary schools at the same time, providing students all over Croatia with the opportunity to connect and, by combining know-how and technology, find a way to generate a positive impact on their environment. Within the scope of the project, students set up temperature measurement devices in their areas and, by utilising IoT technology, linked all devices through a central application that will collect and update data in real time. In the case of temperature changes in their areas, the application will make it possible to switch lights on and off in their schools. The application’s operation was demonstrated at a live presentation where Boris Drilo and Nenad Bakić switched on the lights in more than 35 elementary schools – by a single click, using the application.
“Right now, the Internet of Things is one of the most significant technologies that is under intensive development. The advantage of his technology is that it enables children to create concepts that are really usable and useful, such as various smart home and smart city solutions. This project demonstrated that students, by making use of technology and cutting-edge know-how, can actually produce something specifically useful for their areas and for the entire society. For instance, the collaboration project made it possible to perform real time ecological measurements in the entire territory of Croatia and to react in case of temperature variations. I am convinced that, by such projects, we can motivate young people to opt for STEM education”, said Nenad Bakić, co-founder of Croatian Makers.
Hrvatski Telekom will continue with the “Together We Are Stronger” donation contest. This year as well, the donation fund worth HRK 700,000 will focus on promotion of education and development projects in the STEM fields.