More than just fun and games
tO many parents, the word “Lego” brings to mind idling away time on some lessthan-beneficial hobby. This is far from the truth. The first thing to understand is that there are many types of Lego building, from beginner to advance levels that involve robotics and computer programming skills and software.
“Research shows that Lego activities nurture creativity, which helps the logical mind make complicated problems simple,” said R.E.A.L Schools, Cahaya Campus, Shah Alam, senior principal Serena Chow. “This not only produces an inventive mindset, but also transforms an ordinary kid into a confident problem solver.”
Lego education is at the forefront of this endeavour by promoting creative thinking and even basic computer programming knowledge. This can transform the landscape of conventional classroom learning into a more fun and enjoyable experience. By utilising special “WeDo” software on PCs to conceptualise designs, construct “intelligent” robots and eventually programming them to find the quickest way out of a maze, for example, the possibilities are endless. Students are even taught how to build more advanced robots.
Modern education is already gearing towards nurturing students with critical thinking and problem-solving skills. This new outlook emphasises teaching students to “learn HOW to learn” rather than just WHAT to learn.
In Scandinavian countries, incorporating Lego into the standard curricula of kindergartens, schools and universities is not uncommon. It has contributed towards these countries being able to produce many world-class brands and products – a highly notable feat considering their relatively small population.
The success of R.E.A.L Schools in various Lego competitions has also spurred the school to continue fanning the flames of interest among students in this area. R.E.A.L School participants have, in recent years, walked away with highly acclaimed awards such as the Rising Star Award and Best Overall Robot Design Award at the First Lego League (FLL) national-level competition.
The teams were recognised for their unique efforts, ideas, performance and dynamics. They caught the eye of the judges with ideas such as the “TX5 - Nanobot Technology”, which advocates radio frequency ablation in treating cancer as well as bacteria-powered nanobots (via magnetic waves) that can be used in the human body.
Another award-winning presentation was a project with a stem cell regeneration theme where stem cells taken from embryos can be directed to repair or replace tissue cells damaged by diseases such as diabetes. The team believed immature brain cells can be coaxed into becoming insulin-producing islet cells that are lacking in diabetics.
Apart from indelibly leaving their mark on the competition, R.E.A.L School students have found the fun in science and technology while instilling in them self-confidence, knowledge, teamwork, leadership and life skills.
Combining studies and play often produces outstanding results. It is the role of the school to provide that platform for students to unleash their true talents and to fulfil their hidden potential. Realising this, R.E.A.L Schools has invested in the required infrastructure, hardware and software equip- ment, as well as in dedicated teaching staff.
With over 28 years of history in shaping education excellence, R.E.A.L Schools is a diverse community of learning committed to delivering holistic education through exceptional academic standards anchored by sound character values and students’ performance. Today, it has six schools located at three campuses in Malaysia, offering both international and national syllabi ranging from preschool, primary to secondary levels. R.E.A.L Schools is a five-star rated school as certified by the Ministry of Education Malaysia.
For details, call R.E.A.L Schools at: > 03-9021 3601 (Suria Campus, Cheras), > 03-7842 3228 (Cahaya Campus, Shah Alam) > 07-386 4468 (Cahaya Campus, Johor) Log on to www.realschools.edu.my
R.E.A.L School students with their Lego robotic models. Far left: The Lego team from R.E.A.L Schools busy programming their robot models using specialised computer software.