Using Educational Robots as Tools of Cultural Expression

Catlin, D. Smith, J.L. and Morrison, K. (2012). Using Educational Robots as Tools of Cultural Expression: A Report on a Project with Indigenous Communities. Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Robotics in Education. Sept 13th to 15th, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic, pp. 73-79. MatfyzPress.


This paper reports on the use of educational robots with indigenous people. It shows how effective educational robots are at providing tools of self expression and act as a bridge between the modern world and the traditions of Native peoples. The original work first took place with Maoris in New Zealand. A similar, independent project, run by the Native American Squaxin People of Puget Sound, a Sovereign Nation in Washington State, embraced the understandings developed in New Zealand. Following a description of the project, we will evaluate the educational effectiveness of the project using the ERA1 Principles as an evaluative framework. We will also discuss the value of ERA as a helpful tool for understanding educational robotics.

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