Children and parents should ideally spend time together doing things they love. Such interactions are extremely important as they form the framework for learning in children’s formative years. However, for busy working parents who are trying hard to cope with these fast-paced times, time spent with children is almost a luxury.
How Do Children Learn?
Generally, children are social learners. Just as they learn from their environment, they also listen to you, understand you, interpret your intentions, and mimic you.
The number of words children hear by age three influences their academic success by age nine. Words are just linguistic means, but conversations include non-verbal information, including meaningful associations, adult responsiveness, and social interaction patterns.
Conversations, or someone to talk back and forth to, develop their language more. Interactive use of language or conversational turn-taking helps rewire children’s brains and influences their biological growth. Conversational turns also influence greater activity in Broca’s area, a part of the brain associated with language production and comprehension.
Barriers to Learning
Language learning is communal and interactive. This means children should experience language through give and take that elicit engaging and caring responses.
Children might not take creative risks or admit to not understanding something if they feel they might be judged and reprimanded.
You need to connect with children and make them feel safe because they depend on you to help them when they face problems. However, it might not always be possible for you to be there every time.
How Can Robots Help Children Learn?
Robots aren’t meant to replace parents or teachers. They don’t offer a substitute for interactions between parents and children. They function as stand-ins and provide children with opportunities for learning. They are effective educational aids because they can provide socially contingent interactions.
Children tend to think of robots as humans. Robots can be infinitely patient and non-judgmental companions who provide fun-filled, individualized learning.
Robots make great partners because they are always ready to listen and respond. Children are able to express their creativity and ideas to them without fear of criticism. Robots are able to see past children’s errors as they don’t have human biases. Instead, they may help kids rethink and communicate their ideas in a different way.
Robots are not just for schools. They are extremely well in homes by helping children speak coherently and interact with confidence; thus, enhancing natural language processing and learning. They can also help children with homework or other chores.
Robotics has progressed so much that with the help of artificial intelligence, robots can now recognize faces, understand emotions, respond appropriately, and even entertain children. Educational robots can be programmed to gauge what inspires students.
Robot instruction can be customized and can include visual directions or pictures on a screen/monitor. Robots can also be fitted with camera and language learning apps or software that allow them to learn about children’s behavior and interests.
Humanoid robots have great potential as they can feel like a friend rather than an electronic console while teaching children. They can help children who experience learning difficulties or need one-on-one coaching in communication and language learning. Learning can become more like play and, thus, immensely enjoyable.
For example, the ROYBI, which delivers language learning, is able to adapt to a child’s age on the basis of the data he receives. He can speak and teach more than 15 languages. ROYBI can also move around freely with children, gather data and send development reports to parents on their children’s progress.
Robotics is still a developing field. However, it has been proven that robots can help kids learn by mimicking human behavior and that children are comfortable with them. One of them could be a great companion for your child too!