“Robots can serve as the basis of a powerful problem-solving curriculum that will help young children begin to develop the habit of creative, independent problem solving while introducing them to the key technologies of the Information Age.” But …
… It’s Not About the Robots!
21st Century Mind Tools” • The Robots Change, Year-by-Year
There are many different programmable robots on wheels, which one should you choose?
The Pedagogical Advantages of Programmable Robots
“Whatever I cannot recreate for myself I do not understand.” — Richard Feynmann, Nobel Laureate in Physics
- Early Learning robots should encourage children to work with their hands and to move around their environment.
“The hand is the instrument of the intellect.” — Dr. Maria Montessori
As With All Well-designed Manipulatives:
- Early Learning robots provide a medium through which to explore the world.
- Early Learning robots allow for meaningful play (closely related to creativity): play that reveals to children the secrets of their environment.
- Early Learning robots provide a material path to abstraction: i.e., a material, or concrete, way for children to model abstract concepts like length, angle, or negative vs. positive numbers.
Unlike Inert, Passive, Show-&-Tell Manipulatives:
(And many electronic games, toys, and computer “educational” software)
- Early Learning robots can be multi-use: an exploration, modeling, & problem solving tool.
- Early Learning robots are not limited to rigid or prescribed (pre-programmed) uses or behaviors: children can explore their environment creatively, testing and refining their concepts of it as they go. Continue reading