At the SMART Center, programs are offered beginning at the age of three and extending to adulthood. There are three tracks: Seed (3-5), Root (6-18), and Stem (19+). The aim is to equip individuals with the skills and ability to achieve what is called SMART Citizenship. By fostering a supportive environment with engaging educational tools, SMART is preparing their pupils to be well-rounded, 21st century thinkers.
Each week, SMART receives a new batch of 100 prospective students, along with their parents, and begins the onboarding and orientation process. Ultimately, the orientation takes six days to complete and provides the students with fundamental skills to build a foundation of success for the path to SMART Citizenship. In this introductory week, children learn digital literacy, healthy lifestyle choices, human rights, and emotional intelligence.
It’s a major year for SMART with the recent implementation of the new curriculum. As the families arrive, they are welcomed in and begin to file into The Andrea Martin Performing Arts Auditorium, soon filled with 100 children each with their parents. The room is flooded with hesitant excitement and anticipation.
In 2018, SMART served six nearby communities. Today, they have nearly doubled their numbers. By the end of December, COAF SMART hopes to provide education and support to 30 villages. The number of enrolled individuals is also growing exponentially. Hundreds of students are applying online each month and projected enrollment is 1350 students at the conclusion of 2019.
COAF’s Managing Director, Korioun Khatchadourian, welcomes everyone, makes introductions, and dives right into the orientation. A video outlining the newly implemented SMART Curriculum is shown to the families. It discusses the class options and requirements for becoming a SMART Citizen. Students will have the ability to self-design their studies. There are three dimensions, each with two programmatic disciplines which contain three core classes. The children all watch intently, most likely taking mental notes on what most appeals to them. There are a plethora of interesting options, from VR fitness to engineering to Mandarin Chinese.
After the video, official registration begins. Names are called, clipboards are handed out, and children look on as parents and guardians fill out forms. Before the orientation week continues, SMART collects each child’s name and relevant information to get them official started on their journey to SMART Citizenship.