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Ekal Appathon On A Snowy Day

Parveen Minocha

Ekal Youth Leaders and participants braved a snow storm to enjoy building mobile applications last Saturday at Tufts. Ekal Vidyalaya organized a mobile app building workshop and competition. Youth Leaders, Shanmukha Srinivasan, Neeharika Munjal, Satwik Misra lead the workshop to use ‘Thunkable’, the mobile building platform with no coding! With their expertise, the EYLs created a fun environment, leading the group to hands on learning. Young Sriganesh Srinivasan was around for technical support. Along with youth participants (ranging from 9 - 17 years), some of the parents also participated in the workshop. They thoroughly enjoyed learning a new tool and building apps ready to be deployed on mobile devices in such a short duration of time. Everyone explored various features of Thunkables from math functions, handling images, web interface and more.

The team skyped Arun Saigal, Co-founder and CEO of Thunkable. He shared some of the award winning apps built on Thunkable and encouraged kids to explore various features to make meaningful apps. Audience asked questions on the performance and scalability of apps built on this platform. As always, it was inspiration talking to Arun.  

After lunch, the kids went off to participate in the competition. In teams of two, they brainstormed their own app ideas and worked together to shape it. Around 3 pm, they were ready to share their working apps and presented it in front of the judges. The judges included, Dr. Subra Dravida, Su-Ming Wu, and Kusuma Kamath. They were simple impressed by the variety of ideas presented by the kids, which include music based apps, calendar, sports informatica, trivia, fun games, useful app bookmarks and more. Mr. Manoj Munjal and Preeti Munjal were the guest of honor and distributed the certificates. Dr. Subra talked about the mission of Ekal Vidyalaya and urged to support the noble cause. He also presented trophies to kids, in the categories of:

-Creative app - Devin Prajapati, Sumanth Ganjikunta

-Challenging app - Ramya Vempati, Neha Kunam

-Operational/working app - Brandon Jones, Alok Rao

-Providing information - Arvin Venkat

-Best overall - Sanjana Ananthula, Aine Dillon, Serena Leung

The event was supported by Ekal volunteers, Pushpa Baskaran, Srilakshmi Srinivasan, Namdev Baskaran, Anil Minocha, Venkat Rangamani and Anil Saigal. Ekal team is very proud of the youth leaders, Shanmukha, Neeharika, Satwik and Sriganesh on a fantastic  event.  Parents and kids had great feedback and said they were already looking forward to the advanced session!

The event raised funds to run four more Ekal schools in rural India!

For more details on Ekal, visit www.ekal.org; To join Ekal Youth Leaders program, send an email to parveen.minocha@ekal.org

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