In 1969, Seymour Papert invented the first educational robot called a Turtle. It was an addition to the computer language Logo, which he’d designed in 1965 speciﬁcally for educating children. Papert did not simply invent some technology, he oﬀered a revolutionary way of educating children. He gave teachers practical tools to realise constructionist develop mental theories in the classroom. We will show that Papert’s work forms a Kuhnian Paradigm which has endured for nearly 50 years and provides the foundation for all work with educational robots. The use of educational robots in special needs education was one of many beneﬁts that grew out of the resulting environment. The early robots designs didn’t pay attention the needs of this area of education. So early researchers used the available robots and started to ask and seek answers to relevant questions. We analyse this historical research and report on their ﬁndings. We ﬁnd modern research simply conﬁrms the original work. We will introduce the Papert Paradigm and show how it empathised with the changing attitudes towards special needs education. We look at a deepening understanding of the technology provided by the Educational Robot Application Principles. And by combining this information with the Universal Design for Learning ideas we ﬁnd a set of guidelines to help create better robots for special needs education.
Published in Technology, Knowledge and Learning – Springer Nature B.V. 2018 Full Text Available at https://rdcu.be/4ESz
Teaching programming and coding skills in K-12 classrooms is becoming a part of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programs across the United States. Often, these opportunities are available through extra-curricular activities such as Robotics club, math club, STEM club, etc. Increasing STEM opportunities for students who are English language learners, culturally and linguistically diverse learners, and/or students from underserved backgrounds is vital. In a pilot study prior to a larger, grant-funded study on the effects of metacognitive strategy instruction on elementary students’ academic performance, the principal investigator (PI) developed an activity with a corresponding assessment instrument. The PI initially incorporated floor-robots into an activity in two fifth grade science classrooms. Pre/post survey analysis provided encouraging results. To follow up on the initial results, the PI and co-principal investigators (co-PIs) introduced floor-robots into eight additional fourth and fifth grade science classrooms over an additional school year, as well as in an after-school setting, to determine how floor-robots might be used effectively to engage elementary students in STEM learning. The investigators introduced over 257 elementary students to three types of floor-robots, and this provided students with opportunities to have hands-on access to programming and coding robots for specific purposes. Of the 257 students who interacted with the floor-robots, approximately 103 were provided with pre/post surveys on Roamer®, one of the floor-robots. Additional data analysis provided surprising and encouraging results. (more…)
The new 2017 programs concerning primary school and middle school clearly mention computer algorithms and computer coding. We have seen that these two skills can be learned by programming certain mini-drones. This approach makes it possible to initiate all pupils, including those with special educational needs, not only into algorithms and computer coding, but also into other basic skills. (more…)
Development of an interactive system to treat patients with movement impairments of the upper extremity is described. Gestures and movements of patients as instructed by therapists are detected by accelerometers and feedback is provided directly to the patient via a robot. (more…)
The paper discusses the design of a robot that helps patient’s develop their movement skills rather than replacing them with robotic assisted movement.
This article was originally published under the title – Tactile turtle: explorations in space with visually impaired children and a floor turtle – in Vol. VII No 1 of: The British Journal of Visual Impairment , Spring 1989. Extracts were also printed in Vol 1 of Valiant’s Go Magazine, January 1990 and were on the old Valiant Web Site under the title: A Roamer in Space. In this article Roamer and Turtle floor robots are synonymous. (more…)