Catlin, D. (2019, November 20). Classroom Maker Projects and User Bots. Fablearn Conference Italy 2019 Ancona.
The EduRobot Taxonomy identifies three basic types of education robots: Build, User and Social Robots. As its title implies, we associate Build Robots with maker-projects where students mainly learn from making a robot. Students learn with User Robots, like Turtles, by using them to solve problems and engage with invaluable experiences. However, just as you can make a Turtle robot from a Build Robot, you can utilise some User Robots as platforms for maker-projects. This paper reviews thirty years of maker-projects involving User Robots. I’ll present examples from different continents, cultures and social-economic groups. Although I’ll cite a few research projects, this isn’t a research-driven paper. It’s chiefly a report on the work of experienced classroom teachers delivering regular lessons to students aged between 4 and 18-years-old. It explains how they used robots and maker ideas to meet curriculum objectives for students of varying abilities. Using this evidence, we’ll gain a broad appreciation of classroom maker-projects featuring User Robots and glean a few helpful tips you might find useful. We’ll also detect the authenticity of this bottom-up approach – it shows what happens when experienced teachers use robots effectively.
Conference Proceedings in Press. Full text version available on request.