In an increasingly technology-driven future, it is essential that students are raised to be creators rather than just consumers. Experts believe that introducing concepts of artificial intelligence (AI) and STEM at an early age is crucial for the next generation. While it may seem overwhelming, robotics can serve as an effective tool for engaging young learners and laying the foundation for a deeper understanding of complex technologies.
Using hands-on interaction with robots, children can learn and experience the world while engaging in decision-making activities similar to those found in AI. This exposure helps develop an intuitive understanding of these concepts and prepares students for the future. Research also supports the use of physical manipulatives, like robots, in teaching abstract concepts to young children, making robotics and AI a perfect combination for learning.
Jason Innes, the Director of Curriculum, Training, and Product Management at KinderLab Robotics, Inc., believes that pairing robotics and AI can positively impact children’s mindsets and nurture them to become creators. By utilizing robots as teaching aids, children can be empowered to see AI as a tool that they can shape.
In the field of education, early exposure to STEM and AI is crucial. Starting these subjects at a young age encourages children to think of themselves as creators with technology. Since technology is already pervasive in their lives, introducing STEM and AI concepts early on promotes a positive attitude towards these fields.
It is evident that AI will play a significant role in education in the future. However, it is equally important to develop children’s understanding of how these tools work. By instilling the mindset of creators, rather than merely consumers, children can use AI as a tool to create and innovate.
Teaching abstract concepts like AI to young children can be challenging. At KinderLab Robotics, they have introduced the screen-free Kibo robot kit to promote STEM education. Robots, like AI, use sensors and code to make decisions and learn from their experiences. By using physical manipulatives like robots, children can engage with and understand these abstract concepts more effectively.
Implementing AI education with robots in the classroom has practical applications. KinderLab Robotics has developed a free curriculum called “Thinking with Kibo,” which includes various lesson plans exploring AI. One example involves children creating their own Mars rover using the robot. This exercise encourages children to think about the sensors needed for exploration and how the robot can use the information gathered to make decisions and improve its performance.
Engaging students in the differences between simple robots they can program and advanced AI systems encourages them to reflect on the limitations of these technologies. The goal is for children to understand that AI, like any other technology, is created by human engineers. This understanding empowers children to see themselves as designers and creators who can shape the future of AI.
In conclusion, the combination of robotics and AI provides a powerful tool for fostering creativity and preparing students for the technological future. Early exposure to these concepts allows children to develop an intuitive understanding of complex technologies and encourages them to become creators rather than passive consumers. By incorporating robotics and AI into education, we can empower the next generation to shape the world with technological innovation.
– KinderLab Robotics, Inc.
– Jason Innes, Director of Curriculum, Training, and Product Management at KinderLab Robotics, Inc.