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7 reasons why robotics is helping make learning fun again

Nowadays robotics in education is the new way to inspire your child.

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As kids we learn about the world through play. Learning is fun, engaging and effortless. Somewhere along the line, however, we are taught that education is serious business and that starting school means we have to stop playing and start learning. This means thousands of children around the world are going through the motions of "learning" by sitting in a classroom and filling out textbooks. The kids today are smart, no doubt, but often lack the ability to put their knowledge to use in practical situations. But things are slowly turning around – in large part thanks to the introduction of robotics in education, which is slowly bringing playfulness and experimenting back in learning.

This article lists 7 reasons why robotics in education is helping make learning fun again.

1. Learning about setting goals and working to achieve them

Kids are used to doing things grown-ups tell them to do. Rarely do they see the big picture of why solving math problems would be useful to them in some way. With robotics, however, kids get to set their own goals and are in charge of achieving them. If you want your robot to be able to find its way through a maze, you have to make some calculations. And also solve math problems. But solving a math problem is so much more fun once you actually see the results with your own eyes.

2. Literal hands-on learning


What is more hands-on than actually building a robot from scratch? And it's way easier than it sounds! With all sorts of kid-friendly robotics kits available, your robot can either be made of LEGO pieces and other simple building blocks or more advanced and detailed parts. What kind of robot you build depends on what task you need it to perform. So kids will need to think about the goal they have set for their robot and start working towards that.

3. Problem solving


So lets say your goal is to build a robot that can sumo wrestle other robots out of the ring. You have a pretty good idea of what you need to do. But when your robot faces others in the ring, it loses. If this were a math test in school and you had gotten the answer wrong then that would be it. The teacher would give you a grade and you would stick the test in the bottom of your bag and forget about it. But in the sumo ring the battle has just begun. If your first attempt did not work than instead of throwing the robot away you go back to the drawing board.

4. Facing failure and improving on it

Failure is a word that scares most people. But we're only afraid of it because we've been taught that only right answers are awarded. But sometimes, in order to arrive at the right answer, you have to get a lot of wrong answers first. So if your sumo robot failed the first match then you probably have a good idea of what went wrong. So not succeeding the first time will give you invaluable insight into what you need to do differently. And maybe the second match will see your robot undefeated!

5. Learning teamwork and social skills


Working on robotics in a school environment means working in teams with your classmates. This means kids are faced with having to consider other people's opinions, make arguments, divide up tasks and responsibility. A great outlet for this type of teamwork and socializing is robotics competitions. For example, Europe's biggest robot competition Robotex, which is held in Estonia, sees hundreds of student teams take part each year. The teams have worked tightly together for an entire year for a common goal - to see their robot take home the title.

6. Developing creativity

The number of different competitions held during Robotex is around 20. This number keeps growing with every year because each year the participants come up with more creative solutions for their robots. The possibilities are limitless and, instead of defining one "right way" to solve a task, the students are encouraged to think outside the box and come up with new and crazy ways to build the robots and solve the tasks.

7. Having fun

The best part about learning through robotics – it's fun! It allows kids to put those book-smarts to use in an engaging and playful way. So even though education is serious business, learning can sill be fun!

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