The African Robotics Network (AFRON) and IEEE Robotics and Automation Society (RAS) sponsor one of several worthwhile initiatives designed to interest young people in a technological future, the Ultra Affordable Educational Robot Project Design Challenge. Specifically, their biannual challenge hopes to "collaboratively create an educational robot that is an order of magnitude less expensive than existing products, to inspire young people around the world."
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology won the latest design challenge with a kit containing a $20 wheeled-wonder that is constructed by folding inexpensive fabrics like polyester in a fashion reminiscent of the Japanese art of Origami. RobotLAB salutes the sponsors and MIT. What a great way to bring affordable robots to emerging economies where cost is an important--perhaps the most important--problem standing between interested people and robots!
Another great edtech initiative is our own Stem Bot 3D Class. Stem Bot 3D is more than just a kit, it is a kit maker, a whole new way to make a programmable robot. Students use the Stem Bot curriculum to design their own individual robots using a 3D printer and modular electronic components. As they design they learn the science and math behind their design and how it reflects on their robots’ future behavior--behavior that they will program themselves using the drag-and-drop programming language Scratch (don’t look down your nose at Scratch, it was developed by MIT and allows for a wide range of behaviors).
A number of great edtech initiatives exist to further the spread of ‘robot literacy’ worldwide. Certainly the Ultra Affordable Educational Robot Project Design Challenge is one of the most worthwhile with its attempt to bring a viable, programmable robot to the developing world at an affordable price. RobotLAB’s Stem Bot 3D Class is another worthwhile initiative. Designed for schools interested in innovative edtech everywhere, the curriculum allows students to design, build and program robots while engaged in learning the science and math behind them. To learn more about how the STEM BOT 3D CLASS can help your math and science classes please contact us here at RobotsLAB.COM