Teaching robots, children learn themselves

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Children learn robots

In pedagogy, a method has long been used successfully, when the learner teaches someone and thus learns himself. The effectiveness of the method is due to the fact that the child, playing the role of a teacher, increases interest and self-confidence.

This method inspired Swiss researchers to develop the CoWriter project, which was presented last week at the International Conference on Interaction of People with Robots.

The system, designed to help students learn writing, is still in the testing phase. At the moment, the pilot project CoWriter was tested in the walls of the primary school with the participation of children from 6 to 8 years.

The intellectual part of the system is enclosed in the tablets, and the physical part is a humanoid robot of a friendly kind. The built-in algorithm requires bots to master writing under the guidance of children, imitating processes and admitting the typical mistakes inherent in learning people. The fact that “robots” write using an extensive set of drafts from the base built into their program is displayed on the tablet display, and the children correct the result using the stylus. At the same time for children, the whole process is rather not training, but a game.

The ultimate goal of the developers is to create a training robot, allowing the children to train it, while never getting tired. For teachers, this will be a useful tool also in the sense that the robot will initially know much less than the most lagging pupils, and it will develop gradually, as it is taught by its children.

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