Teenagers Solving Everyday Problems

Local teenagers are showing off their solutions for everything from garbage sorting to alerting students when their posture is wrong, to an intelligent guide stick for the visually impaired and a system to warn pedestrians when large vehicles turning right.


The 23 innovative programs are on display at the ongoing 7th China (Shanghai) International Technology Fair.


All the inventions were created by the students to handle real problems in life and incubated in the past year by the “Shanghai Youth Model Innovation and Entrepreneurship Project,” run by the Shanghai Educational Center of Science and Art.


They were chosen from more than 100 programs.


Shanghai Shangde Experimental School has three projects exhibited at the grand fair. These include the large vehicle right-turn safety reminder developed by eighth-grader Wang Luobin.


“I decided to make the reminding system as large vehicles have been repeatedly reported to cause deadly accidents when making right turns,” he said.


“I interviewed some drivers and found that to install cameras and an imaging system in the driver’s cab is very expensive, so I made this system to alarm pedestrians if they are in the dangerous area when a large vehicle is making a right turn.”


His invention includes detectors, a red laser projector and a loudspeaker to be installed on trucks.


The detectors can automatically recognize whether there are people or objects near the vehicle when it is making a right turn. If there are, the projector sends out red lights to remind people in the potentially dangerous area and the loudspeaker would also broadcasts a voice warning.


Xie Xiaoyun, a fifth-grader from Baoshan, joined three fellow students to develop a set of installations to help people learn about waste-sorting.


“My mother taught me about garbage classification two years ago and I think it’s necessary to teach other children too so as to make the world more beautiful,” she said.


With the help of her mother and teachers from the Shanghai Baoshan Youth Activity Center, they developed the garbage classification cognitive instrument.


It includes four mini garbage bins and blocks bearing names of different wastes in Chinese characters and pinyin.


If a block is dropped to the right bin, the screen on top shows a smiling face and praises the user with words like “good job.” If the user gets it wrong, the voice system says “no, I don’t like eating it.”


“We designed the system to make garbage-sorting like a game and interesting for children,” said Xie. “Even kindergarten students can play it.”


They are the third batch of students’ inventions displayed at the annual fair.  Many have won patents or under assessment for patent approval.


Ami Dror, CEO of LeapLearner, a Shanghai-based education technology company that teaches children to code, said kids should start innovation as young as possible and the program was amazing in helping children bring their ideas to reality and inspiring them by showing their achievements in such an important fair.


Source: SHINE