WATCH | Komal Dadlani is working to change the way science is taught around the world. She's from Latin America, where 88 percent of schools don't have access to lab equipment. She set out to change that right out of college with Lab4U, which uses the sensors in smart phones to create mobile science labs.
Lab4U comes with a variety of scientific experiments that are programmed to be simple enough for anyone to use. It also has low-budget accessories, like a one-dollar lens that turns any phone into a microscope.
Dadlani earned the spotlight as the 2017 Toyota Mother of Invention at the Women in the World L.A. Salon, where we were invited to interview her on stage. She shared her challenges as a young entrepreneur.
Toyota gifted Ms. Dadlani with a surprise grant of $50,000, which she says will go a long way toward providing many more science labs for underprivileged students around the world. Her invention is already in 60 schools.
Here she demonstrates how with a simple plastic bag and a spring, any tablet can be turned into a scientific tool to measure spring constant. Her app offers Lab4Physics, Lab4Biology and Lab4Chemistry.
Dadlani said she hopes that by democratizing science through offering experiments to more schools, more girls will be attracted to STEM fields. She designed the app to appeal to girls, with pictures of girls involved in the experiments.
We need a real understanding of science to make a difference, whether it be climate change, engineering, water problems, or breast cancer.
Dadlani said learning science needs to be fun, and that teachers must motivate by allowing students to fail, learn from their failures and try again. "We believe that good intentions are not enough to solve world biggest problems," she said.
Visit Lab4U to find out more about Lab4U resources for teachers and students.
Toyota Mother of Invention found Dadlani as part of a yearly effort to recognize women around the world finding creative ways to solve problems. CLICK HERE to learn about other women who earned the recognition.
Women in the World, in association with the New York Times, contributed to this report by providing video of Dadlani and from their L.A. event.
The organization fosters awareness of issues impacting women around the world.
Click here to learn more about their upcoming events.
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