As a teacher, you are tasked with filling your student’s little noggins with essential knowledge providing the best opportunities in life. Let’s be honest, keeping the attention of a classroom full of high-energy kids is no easy task. You’re competing with a world full of bright lights and sounds. 6-year-olds have their own iPhones, 8-year-olds have better Google-fu than you, and high school students think they know everything because the Internet said so. Parents are demanding the best education their taxpayer money can afford, but you can’t get Jr. to look up from the newest android. You wonder if there is a better solution that isn’t only engaging, but also affordable?
Round Rock ISD Fern Bluff Elementary in Austin, Texas found a technology that doesn’t just captivate their students, but engages them on an all-new level. The school recently held a STEAM innovation showcase where parents were invited to see what the students have been working on. One of the presentations hosted Milo, the socially advanced robot with facial expressions.
“We had a Milo Interactive Demonstration,” Tanya Stalder a teacher from Fern Bluff Elementary told RoboKind. “The demonstration included some items from the demo setting, a greetings lesson, a conversation lesson, a cognitive learning lesson and of course the dance party. Milo was a huge hit campus-wide. All of the students really enjoyed interacting with Milo. We had a packed room for six sessions. It was a very fun night,”
Milo isn’t just fascinating for children with autism. He grabs the attention of everyone with his charming smile and wicked dance moves. Robots4STEM, an affordable platform developed to teach students the basics of computer science and visual coding, is showing great promise in pilot schools around the country. Just like Milo, Jett bridges the gap of interest for students. With ready-made plans and JettLingo, an easy to understand visual programming language, students can explore their interest in technology. Robots4STEM breaks away from the boring traditional lesson plans of “Hello World,” coding. Jett breathes excitement back into the classroom.
“If you’re doing mini-exercises and mini-projects along the way that are actually engaging and aren’t horrible and boring to do, then you care and you want to do it because you’re working towards something,” says Richard Margolin, Cofounder and CTO of RoboKind.
As Fern Bluff Elementary STEAM night shows, there is certainly a place in the classroom for Milo and Jett that augments educators’ abilities to teach. RoboKind is helping to make learning fun and engaging again, and more importantly accessible for everyone.