Hosted by Friends of Design, Regina Kgatle, an electrical/computer engineer that designs educational games and works towards developing the social sector through low-key collaborations, was effervescent about her host’s exceptional forward thinking capabilities that could put them in the forefront of schooling trends.
As bold a proclamation as that is, I think it is deserved. I say this because every time I enter their space, I’m not only captivated by the depth of the individuals they present but also the utility of the actual physical space.
The interior reminds me of a refrigerator door of a highly creative family.
Posters, projects, messages and all manner of design paraphernalia are expertly scattered. Hours of creativity go into that space. I enjoy that.
Strongly believing in the power of fun, I found her presentation comforting. Regina laid the groundwork for the discussion by pointing out the commonality of games. Mobile games in particular. Drawing from her own childhood experiences with local arcades and the struggle between play and learning [possibly homework], Regina seems to actively to question the status quo with her project goals. Combining learning and play.
As exciting as that topic is, the reality of this combination relies on scant funding. I was curious to learn more about Regina’s innovative funding model that allows underfunded programmes to grow into the technologically inclined paradigm we’re finding ourselves in.
By profiting off private schools, Regina’s organisation, Educade (link below) funnels resources to communities that don’t have the funding to keep up with the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s technological advances.
With years of experience in her chosen field, Regina’s gentle confidence encouraged me to ask the one question I’ve been fretting over for the better part of 3 years.
How would you suggest incorporating all these new technologies into programmes that are still relying on conventional (offline) games to engage and teach people new concepts?
Despite her reluctance to talk money on such an open platform (expertly covered by an “I don’t know”)… I gathered that it partly boils down to collaboration with the right partners.
This isn’t a cure-all unfortunately. The inefficiencies of working with
government bureaucratic institutions block partnerships.
When the partnerships do work…amazing things happen (like breakfast and informative talks). Regina went on to describe a children’s game called “There’s a monster for everyone” that addresses issues around sexuality and rape. For more about the game, please contact @67GamesSA.
I also got a chance to speak to one other audience member, Liddi, who shared her experience of learning how to encourage self-learning in children and adults. That was a good conversation, thanks Liddi!
Overall, good talk. I’m curious about the next one on the 25th.