With glittering eyes, fourth grader Rashidul Islam Tabir is keenly looking at a science box – Colours of Light, and listening to the salesman's explanation wholeheartedly at OnnoRokom BigganBaksho's stall in the 25th Dhaka International Trade Fair.
Tabir's mother purchased the science box for him seeing his interest, "Tabir is not the sharpest in science subjects. This is the first time I saw him being indulged into something science related."
"The lack of interest or fear for math and science subjects is an old thing. One of the reasons behind this is the lack of science kits that can grab students' attention," said team lead of OnnoRokom BigganBaksho, Nur Rahman Rukon. He adds, "Very few students in our country get the opportunity to work in a laboratory. Well-equipped laboratories and available science kits could help the students' learning by a higher degree."
This lacking in the education system inspired Mahmudul Hasan Sohag, chairman of OnnoRokom, to come up with interesting science kit ideas in 2014.
In Sohag's words, "OnnoRokom aims to build a different Bangladesh. For achieving that goal, we need different people with more understanding, morality and learning. Therefore, we have designed these kits focusing on creativity and morality."
Like Colours of Light, there are six more science boxes offering basic science knowledge which will appeal to the eager ones. They have designed different science kits focusing on light, electricity and magnet. To enhance focus and concentration skills, there is a kit named Focus Challenge as well.
The price of these science kits range from Tk650 to Tk1,500.
Talking about the challenge of reaching to people, Rukon said, "We have to convince two generations; the kids who would use them and the parents who would buy the kits for them. The end-result is that kids get to learn with happiness." They also used the strategy to provide consultation contents for the parents in this regard.
Even though at the beginning they did not design materials targeting age groups, they have recently changed their approach based on clients' desires. Considering parents' request, in this 25th Dhaka International Trade Fair, OnnoRokom has launched a science kit especially for fifth grade students.
"We always wanted to promote fun-learning in education, which is why we launched kits which would help children to learn through playing. You can call it one kind of a vocational education. Also, we have incorporated moral messages in the forms of stories to bring our children up as moral citizens," said Rukon while explaining their aim.