This weekend, the Aga Khan Education Boards are hosting the inaugural Global STEM Festival Finale. Over recent weeks, participants from 20 jurisdictions around the world engaged in activities and experiments so as to better understand the world around us, and develop important skills for the future.

The Global STEM Festival held in Summer 2020 was an opportunity for 3-17 year olds around the world to explore Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) activities at home, and share their favorite project virtually with the global Jamat. The festival continues a long history of the Ismaili Community’s engagement in knowledge, intellectual enquiry, and learning more about the world, so as to make a contribution to improving the lives of ourselves and others.

In a speech at the foundation ceremony of the Aga Khan Academy in Maputo, Mawlana Hazar Imam spoke of the need and ability to navigate the world of the future, saying, “It is my hope that these schools will stimulate creativity, intellectual curiosity and honest inquiry so that their students can adapt and thrive in a world of rapid change; can make informed judgements on life’s daily challenges, and place those judgements in an ethical framework.”

Over the course of the initiative, more than 1500 children and youth were able to explore the natural and created worlds around them, and further develop important skills including critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, research and analytical skills.

The Global STEM Festival was also an important opportunity for parents and caregivers to introduce the exciting world of STEM to their children, to support their journey of inquiry by being involved in their child’s STEM project, and to ultimately boost their skills development, to give them a more enhanced start in life.

As the STEM experts participating in our Festival Finale will attest, a parent or caregivers’ role in this journey is key: the support they provide is crucial to develop these skills and prepare them for the future. 

From building a volcano to designing an app, every project highlights an important learning point - each of which is worth celebrating.  So, we invite the children, the parents, the relatives, the friends and the global Jamat to share in our experience.

There are two ways to join us for the Festival Finale: 

1. Be inspired by all the submitted projects by visiting the Online Showcase from today.

2. On Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 August The Ismaili TV will premiere a two-part Finale!  We will honour the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) talent of our children and youth across the world by watching some of the submitted projects. During the show you will meet STEM experts and can even try a couple of experiments with us at home. Get ready and prepare a plastic bag, scissors, string, a small object or weight, two glasses, and one piece of paper. 

Tune in to The Ismaili TV or Facebook Live at the following times: 

First screening:
Part 1 on 29 August: 12 PM Toronto | 5 PM London | 8 PM Dubai
Part 2 on 30 August: 12 PM Toronto | 5 PM London | 8 PM Dubai

Repeat showtimes:
Part 1 on 30 August: 9:30 AM Dushanbe | 12:30 PM Singapore | 2:30 PM Melbourne
Part 2 on 31 August: 9:30 AM Dushanbe | 12:30 PM Singapore | 2:30 PM Melbourne

Whilst the Festival Finale marks the conclusion of the Global STEM Festival, for many of our participants this is only the beginning.  Children and parents or caregivers have been inspired by the various projects submitted and will continue their development long after the Festival Finale is over.