[OLPC India] OLPC Health

Arjun Sarwal arjun at laptop.org
Wed Sep 3 12:07:41 EDT 2008

I would like to introduce you all to Tom and Jake and their fantastic work.
Below is an excerpt from my recent communication with Tom. Please get
in touch with Tom regarding his projects if you might be interested-
some great learning-by-doing projects here.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Tom Boonsiri <tom.boonsiri at gmail.com>
Date: Mon, Sep 1, 2008 at 1:44 AM


Thank you for the flattering introduction! =)

My grassroots group based here in California truly believes in the
educational mission of the OLPC project; however, we wanted to focus
on the development of an activity that would benefit not only the
students in the classroom but be able to touch all people within the
community. One of the ways we felt could that could be accomplished
was through health wellness. Also, we felt that the sensor interface
was a brilliant feature that would truly allow us to give kids a
hands-on opportunity to explore various phenomena of the human body.
Thanks to the great foundation that Arjun laid, we were able to
develop two low-cost biomedical peripherals to visually depict the
human heart rate.

Though the strength of our activity lies in the structure and message
of our lesson plan. The lesson plan includes about 4 learning modules
beginning with the question of "What makes me alive?" leading to an
explanation of the human body and heart, various manual exercises to
record the students' heart rates (reading the pulse through a wrist or
stethoscope) and to explore various ways to influence it (ie. jumping
in place, valsava maneuver, etc.), and automated heart rate detection
through the peripherals. The result is an understanding of the
influence everyone (students and family members) has on their body (to
lead a healthy lifestyle), further encouragement to explore the sensor
interface, and interest in both engineering and medical aspirations.

Through a local pilot here in the Bay Area we were able to refine our
lesson plan which was very well received by the students. The students
were constantly engaged and very excited to see the effects of their
heart rate in real-time. We further refined our lesson plan to tailor
the material to different age groups and include background materials
for instructors who might not feel comfortable with the science
material. We are enthusiastic to work the various pilots of OLPC India
and feel our activity has reached a maturity ready for immediate
deployment; however, we would require OLPC India's assistance in the
translation of the content.

Our blog and video demos of our peripherals are located below:

Looking forward to your response.

Warm Regards,
Tom Boonsiri

Arjun Sarwal

More information about the India mailing list