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Fostering Robotics and Artificial Intelligence

A decade or so ago, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) were just buzzwords in Indian schools. However, today robots do not just serve food in school cafeterias, but they assist teachers in teaching in the classroom and they also help clear the doubts of students.

Robotics and AI as subjects of study have been introduced in several Indian schools. They are innovative technologies for a rapidly-changing world. They now form an integral part of the curriculum just as does Math, English, and the Humanities. The idea behind building these robots and learning Robotics and AI is to help teachers do something different for children, rather than simply deliver the same content year after year, from the same textbooks.

The widespread prevalence of technology has enabled several schools to design a new curriculum for students, which incorporates Robotics and AI. This curriculum not only teaches students how to design robots and AI applications, but also how they can be used to influence publics, and also how to use them to be successful for jobs of the future.

How Robotics and AI are currently being used in education

A recent report by Microsoft and McKinsey reveals that AI is already being used by teachers and schools across the world, to understand how their students are progressing. There are several different ways that Robotics and AI is being used in the classrooms of today. Some of them are:

  1. Personalized Learning: Managing a class of 30 to 40 students can make personalized learning impossible. However, with AI and Robotics, the school can provide a level of differentiation that can customize learning specifically to an individual student’s strengths and weaknesses.
  2. Serving as a Teacher’s Aid: Teachers do not only teach, they also spend several hours grading papers and preparing for upcoming lessons. Certain tasks, such as grading papers can be done by robots, giving teachers a lighter load, so they can concentrate on other things. Machines can already grade tests with multiple-choice questions, and are close to being able to assess hand-written answers. AI can also improve enrolment and admissions processes.
  3. Teaching the Teacher: AI makes comprehensive information available to teachers any time of the day. They can use this information to continue to improve themselves, such as learning a foreign language, or mastering complex programming techniques.
  4. Connecting everyone: Because Robotics and AI is computer-based, it can be connected to different classrooms across the world. This fosters greater cooperation, communication, and collaboration among schools and countries.

How Robotics and AI are becoming an integral part of the school curriculum

Robotics and AI are relevant to all students, regardless of their income and background. There are several ways that Robotics and AI are becoming an integral part of the school curriculum. The first step, however, is nurturing a curiosity for learning. Some of the ways that Robotics and AI are becoming an integral part of the school curriculum are:

  1. Teaching Coding: This is one of the first steps in teaching students about Robotics and AI. Even young students can learn basic coding, by using several AI programs available to them. By beginning the coding experience in these programs, students can then progress to learning advanced coding skills, required by Java or Python. These are all skills that can be used by children in a changing world.
  2. Working on Hands-on Projects: Like most learning, Robotics and AI are best learned hands-on. Schools can use a machine learning site that has several lessons for projects that can show students how to use Robotics and AI in the real world. There is no limit to the kinds of tasks that students can do using Robotics and AI. They can manipulate language, analyse data, learn music, or even create a virtual pet.
  3. Complete Immersion: Several schools have mandated Robotics and AI in Grades 5 to 8, and have also expanded these subjects in other grades as well. The aim of these schools is to help students understand and accept Robotics and AI, so that it becomes more accessible to everyone. One of the strategies to learn Robotics and AI is gamification. Schools have embedded Robotics and AI in STEM courses, and are exploring the use of Robotics and AI in other subjects such as Social Studies, Math, Music, Art, Computer Science, and even Media Arts. 

How Robotics and AI can be applied in schools of the future

Robotics and AI are being applied successfully in several educational instances and improve learning and student development, as well as the performance of educators. These are some innovative ideas in education and also ways that Robotics and AI will be applied in schools of the future…

  1. Emotional Wellbeing: A child’s emotional state predicts how well or how poorly that student will learn. Robots are being developed that can identify the emotional state of a student through keyboard strokes and mouse action. It then runs an algorithm that chooses the most appropriate intervention required, providing the student with personalized educational support. These include encouraging words, gestures, and attempts to increase the students’ interest and motivation towards a certain learning goal. The robot has focused on three cognitive states: concentrated, distracted, and inactive. Researchers have found that the social support behaviours provided by these robot tutors have positively impacted the student’s ability to learn.
  2. Spotting and filling the gaps: Robotics and AI can identify gaps in a teacher’s presentation and educational material. When a large number of students submit the wrong answer for a homework assignment, the teacher is alerted by the system. The teacher can then provide clues to the correct answer for other students. This can improve the conceptual foundation of learning for that topic going forward.
  3. Children working alongside Robotics and AI: There are humanoid robots being developed that can talk, move, and can help students from ages seven and up to master everything from computer programming to literacy. Robots can engage children in learning STEM subjects and can provide a fun coding lab for students. Children can learn coding to instruct the robot to perform certain things, such as emotional movements, hand gestures, and even choreographed dances. Working with Robotics and AI in the lab enables students to become familiar with telling a robot to do the tasks they want to get done. It also better prepares students to apply AI to their academic tasks and to train for AI in the future.

With technology such as Robotics and AI affecting education in revolutionary ways, the momentum towards these changes is irreversible. At Vikas, The Concept School, Robotics and AI is woven into the curriculum in a seamless and holistic way. The course curriculum at Vikas, triggers the scientific attitude and mind-set of the students. They are encouraged to think scientifically and to apply their knowledge to a variety of explorations. Students are encouraged to come up with innovative ideas in technology. 

Vikas also provides students with a Robotics and AI Lab to encourage students to apply these technologies to varied experiments conducted by them. Vikas encourages its students to use these technologies to spur innovation and unleash the creativity of students. So, if you want to ensure that your child learns new technologies, such as Robotics and AI, look no further than Vikas, The Concept School.

Vikas, a K-12 institution has been a pioneer in delivering holistic education with a blend of academic and cultural activities within a technologically and globally connected environment, over the last 3 decades. Vikas is honoured with various International and National awards from the British Council, Brainfeed and other reputed organizations in the areas of excellence and performance. Vikas has given this nation more than 1 Lakh Engineers and 10000+ Doctors. To foster 21st Century Skills, Vikas established the ATL Labs, Robotics Lab, Artificial Intelligence and Entrepreneurship Courses. 

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Vikas, The Concept School | +91 7702900900 | www.vikasconcept.com

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