Robot Toys Help Kids Get Into Robotics
Posted on Jul 02, 2015 3:37 PM. 2 min read time
When we look at the fast growing robotic and automation industry, the critics are not unanimous. Uses of industrial robots, collaborative robots and automated mechanical systems in our day to day work are becoming more and more common. People keep arguing about the impact of this ‘robotic and automation’ evolution. Some say that robots are threatening our jobs while others simply state that it is moving the workforce to a different technical level. In my opinion, without really noticing, people are already adapting to these new technological changes. You may wonder how?
While playing with toys like the Lego Mindstorms, Kibo, Moss, Cubelets, Dash &Dots and much more, kids are already learning the basics of robotics and automation. Just like 2 years old can run an iPhone more easily than some adults, kids will develop robotics and automation skills early on and will therefore adapt much more easily to higher skilled jobs in the future.
Kids get a lot out of playing with robotic toys;
- They learn how to strategically solve a problem by developing the right sequence to solve a specific problem.
- They get used to different kinds of sensor technologies like cameras, light sensors, sound sensors, temperature sensors and even Bluetooth technology.
- Kids will develop their creativity as they work out the solutions to their problems and get some basic programming skills.
I have to admit though that I see one downside to these robotic toys, once your kids start playing, you may have a hard time getting his attention and get him to stop playing! But this is just like with the first Nintendo back in the day.
Another way we see kids more involved in robotics is through FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology). Through their activities and competitions, FIRST is inspiring young people to become science and technology leaders. FIRST has reached many people worldwide!
During the latest DARPA Robotics Challenge, the DARPA organization proposed to teenagers around the US to create a short (video) to show their perception of robots and how they perceive robots might affect their lives in the future. Here are the finalists of the Robots4Us contest.
Who knows, these kids may be the ones who will end up getting the next generation of robots coming out of the DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals to deal with real natural disasters!