CMU and Lego put advanced robots in Pa schools

Carnegie Mellon prof: 'Using robotics to get kids interested in math and science is far more exciting than the traditional math and science problems.'

Are you ready for the four Rs of education - reading, writing, ritmatic and robots? In Pittsburgh and southwestern Pennsylvania, Carnegie Mellon is teaming up with Lego Education to put robot-building programs in over 60 schools, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

"The goal here is using the motivational effects of robots to excite more children to pursue careers in science and technology," said Robin Shoop, director of the Robotics Academy at Carnegie Mellon.

The schools use Carnegie Mellon's classroom curriculum for elementary, middle and high school students and Lego's most advanced robot model the Mindstorms NXT model.

Students are taught how to program their robots for many different uses, including retrieving items and moving things to and fro. The robots can measure the size of a room and even talk to the students and assume a personality.

"Robotics is the fourth 'R' in education along with reading, writing and arithmetic," Mr. Shoop said. "Using robotics to get kids interested in math and science is far more exciting than the traditional math and science problems."

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