17 year old Esra from Sweden shares her experience with AV1, in her own words

Hello! My name is Esra Sakka and I am 17 years old. I am in the second year of high school where I study economics and law. Five years ago I was introduced to AV1 and in this article I thought I would share my experiences.

In 2017 I suffered a swelling of the optic nerve and the doctors discovered that this was due to a brain tumour. I had a port-a-cath inserted and started chemotherapy. I was then in the sixth grade of elementary school and was 12 years old. The treatment caused me to miss a lot of school, which had a negative effect on both school work and my well-being. But then luck came and something that saved me during tough times. Something that gave me motivation and a smile on my face. A school robot.

Esra's tips & tricks for the student and school who will use AV1

  • Ideally, sit somewhere where you can focus and not be disturbed by others.
  • Headphones or some kind of headset will help you focus.
  • In the place where the school robot will stand, it should be as bright as possible. Darkness is no fun.
  • Always have a charger for your iPad, computer or mobile phone with you.
  • Feel free to give AV1 a personal name, it will be more fun that way.
  • Once a day, you can draw lots in the classroom to decide which classmate will accompany the robot and take care of it during the day. In this way, everyone gets an understanding of what it's like and gets to know the real person behind AV1.

This is how it happened when I got my AV1

That I would get the chance to use a school robot was something I never thought. But when I found out that I got sick and it would take up a lot of my time, we had to find something that could help.

My head teacher worked with the primary school administration and there I learned that they had a project going on. But it seemed that something had gone wrong and the project was about to fail. But then they found me. The perfect person to give a school robot.

Annie from the elementary school administration and my head teacher from the school made a suggestion that I should try something called AV1. A school robot that would help me during the time that I could not be physically present in the classroom.

Of course, participating via the robot is not the same as being physically there, but I still got a good and fun feeling in my body. I missed my friends and my teachers, but being able to have contact with them via the robot felt nice. It felt good to know how much they cared about me and how much responsibility they took for me.

This is what I like about the school robot

I have been using my AV1 for five years now. For a year I used it constantly in connection with my hospital school. After that, I use the school robot a little or a lot during the periods I have surgery, because I need time to recover after an operation.

During our five years together, the AV1 has been given many names, but there is one that is extra special because it was the first name I gave it. The name is Shisha. An AV1 becomes like its very own best friend, so giving it a name and a little attention can go a long way.

I love the very invention of the school robot and am so happy that someone came up with the idea and its beautiful message. AV1 has worked very well for me and has shown a very positive impact on my schooling and on my well-being. Despite illness, I have still been in contact with friends and have not felt left out. I got to know what was going on in the class and was able to take part in all the interesting news. It feels like I'm in the classroom, but I'm not.

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