Robotics for kids

Robotics for Kids is a scientifically proven way to use robotics kits and coding of robots to help kids develop key 21st century skills. In addition to teaching kids skills in Robotics and Coding, Robotics for Kids also helps in developing curiosity in children towards STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

Robotics for kids - a complete guide for parents and teachers

According to a study conducted by Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research, robots were introduced in schools as a tool for teaching robotics or other Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects in 1970s and 1980s itself. However, due to certain limitations (unreliable, expensive and limited capabilities of the robots), robotics for kids didn't gain much adoption back then.
But we are in a new world now. We are seeing a lot of technological advancements like self-driving cars, voice-controlled appliances, on-demand delivery with Drones, and more. Imagine our world 20 years from now where your child will start his/her career. What do you think that world will look like? Are you preparing your child for that future? This is where robotics for kids comes in.

In this Robotics for Kids Guide, we will cover all aspects involved in introducing Robotics for Kids. We will explain the benefits of Robotics for Kids, How to get your child into Robotics, What does Research say about Robotics and answer the FAQs on Robotics for Kids.

What is the importance of Robotics for kids?

Because of the research done by Childhood Education Experts across the world, it is now a well known fact that Robotics for Kids has a very positive impact on kids by improving their analytical thinking, problem solving and creative abilities. Hence parents, schools and governments across the world are showing a lot of interest in giving this robotics exposure to kids at a young age. The best part about Robotics for Kids is that kids also enjoy this way of learning compared to traditional classroom approach. Hence Robotics for Kids is loved by both children and adults (teachers and parents).

Why should we introduce Robotics for kids?

A study on "Preliminary Results on Educational Robotics in Special Education" by University of Joensuu revealed that robotic tools made it possible for the students to practice and learn many necessary skills, like collaboration, cognitive skills, self-confidence, perception, and spatial understanding. Such is the scope of robotics for kids.

Robotics being a multidisciplinary field has advantages extending beyond mastering just electronics and programming. Robotics mainly involves developing technology-enabled solutions for everyday problems that we face in our daily lives. This involves understanding the concepts of Science and Mathematics as well. Research states that learning robotics help kids perform better in academics and there are many other benefits. Here are 10 reasons why kids should learn Robotics.

What is the curriculum involved in Robotics for kids?

What is the curriculum involved in Robotics for kids?

Through robotics, your child will learn how real-world technologies work, build smart devices for everyday problems, gain expertise in coding, science, technology, and electronics and develop 21st-century skills (creative thinking, problem-solving & innovative mindset).

A good robotics curriculum involves concepts of:

  • Hardware (Robotics Kits involving sensors, actuators, Circuits, programmable boards, etc) - since kids have to use them hands-on.
  • Programming/ Coding - since kids have to program them.
  • Understanding of Science (Concepts of Electricity, Light, Sound, Magnetism, Forces, Buoyancy, etc.) - since robotics is nothing but the application of these basics of science.
  • Real World Problem Solving - since robotics means to use all the above 3 to solve real-world problems and build real working products.
  • Design Thinking and Creativity - since robotics involves building real-world products that should be easy to use and should have good User experience.
  • Communication and Collaboration - since kids have to demonstrate and explain the robotics projects built by them to others.

As you can see, this is not easy to build and requires a deep understanding of not only circuits but also about how kids learn and how to engage them. In addition, very good robotics kits should be used which will go well with the curriculum.

The curriculum involved in robotics for kids can only be developed by experts who have extensive experience in providing robotics topics, good experience in teaching kids, along with a good understanding of the technology needed to build Robotics Kits. So make sure that you choose a curriculum that is developed by experts. We at Playto Labs have both the experience and expertise in Robotics. Schedule a counseling session to know more about our curriculum involved in Robotics for kids.

What are the learning outcomes expected from Robotics for kids?

Robotics make kids learn and develop skills through hands-on experience. Robotics is one of a kind experience that kids can not get otherwise. A lot of research and studies have been conducted to understand how robotics for kids influences their learning. Here are some major learning outcomes expected from Robotics for kids:

Recommended journey in Robotics for Kids

Robotics for kids is not something that can be done in a couple of hours. For best results, kids should involve themselves in a couple of hours every week for multiple years. This will give them the time to understand it well, get lots of exposure to the science and technology used, and will understand the real-world applications of Robotics.

Grades 1-4: Kids in this grade should be given a course that would help them understand the applications of robotics in the real world and how the technology works. The curriculum should be designed in such a way that the kids should be able to build robotics projects without any complex wirings and connections.

Grades 4-7: Kids in this grade should be given a course that would help them explore electronics & coding at a circuit level. The curriculum should be designed in such a way that the kids should be able to come up with new ideas on their own and build the robotics projects themselves.

Grades 8+: Kids in this grade should be learning the advanced concepts of Robotics like IoT, Mechatronics & AI. The curriculum should cover advanced text-based programming languages as well so that kids can learn and build their profiles to secure admissions to good colleges.

Robotics for Teenagers vs Robotics for Kids: Children undergo a major change in their levels of understanding, their interest levels, attention spans, ability to learn etc. in these years as they turn to teenagers. Teenagers also have different goals vs younger kids as they start to think about University admissions and careers more seriously. So it is very important to develop the right kind of engagement and challenge via appropriate kits and curriculum that helps teenagers to achieve this goals and engages them appropriately. You can read this detailed article on the topic Robotics for Teens, which covers what robotics for teens entails, the benefits of learning robotics at this age, and some of the best programs available for teens interested in robotics.

Key components of Robotics for Kids

Key components of Robotics for Kids

Robotics kits for kids

Robotics is a practical activity and without the right kit, the kids will lose interest & confidence if they are unable to successfully build the project. So extreme care should be taken before providing the robotics kit to your child. You need to understand the age appropriateness of the kit, the future scope for building advanced robots, accreditation of the kit, and more before introducing the robotics kit to your child.

Robotics competitions for kids

Robotics competitions and olympiads are a great way to help kids showcase their creativity and innovation in robotics at a global level. Just practicing robotics is not enough for kids. We need to engage kids in robotics competitions so they can understand how other kids in their age group are thinking and innovating. Engaging kids in such robotics competitions will also help them to focus on a goal and learn robotics in a competitive way. You can explore our curated list of top robotics competitions for kids, where your child can get maximum exposure at.

Robotics Classes for Kids

When it comes to introducing robotics classes for kids, parents are finding it tough to understand what to look for and how to decide the right approach.

The best robotics classes for kids should involve 1-1 personalized live sessions from experts, a globally recognized kit specially designed for the right age group, and a structured curriculum.

Here are some good robotics classes for kids from Playto Labs.

Future of Robotics for kids

Robotics being a multi-disciplinary field has its scope in IoT, Mechatronics (Industrial Robotics), Drones, AI applications, and many more upcoming technologies. We haven’t even explored 0.1% potential of these technologies. And these technologies are expected to be in trend 15-20 years from now just when kids of today would be starting their careers. Such is the scope of robotics for kids.

Even the fields of medical science, psychology, law & order, and agriculture where we don’t see much technology penetration now will be technology dependent a few years from now. So even if kids want to enter these fields they need to be aware of the technological systems and how they work. Kids who know about robotics will perform much better than those who haven’t gotten any exposure. So the bottom line is robotics is going to influence all the fields that we see today in a way that anyone without technical knowledge would suffer to adapt and grow in the coming years.

Robotics projects for kids

Robotics projects for kids

Robotics brings 1000s of possibilities for kids to build project prototypes. But do you know the level of robotics projects that kids should start as a beginner and progress as they develop the expertise? This approach of incremental learning is very important as kids might lose interest or get bored if done in the wrong way. Read more to understand about how to introduce robotics for kids and what is the right age for kids to start robotics.

STEM education for kids

Today STEM became a norm but in our times we weren’t even aware of such a term. This alone is enough to understand the importance of STEM in today’s education for kids. But the most important question is whether STEM education is being provided to kids in the right way or not. In our experience and research, we found that STEM education plays a very vital role in building children’s profiles and careers. Continue reading to understand the best practices of STEM education and how it influences robotics for kids.

Robotics for kids in schools

We hear about many success stories of young robotics innovators at global competitions & olympiads. These events influenced a large number of schools to implement robotics as a part of their regular curriculum. That being said since robotics is a relatively new field and there are not many verified resources available to understand the right way to introduce robotics in school education. With our 10+ years of experience in providing robotics courses for 400,000+ students in 68 countries, here is our recommendation on how to introduce robotics to kids.

Robotics Summer Camps for Kids

Robotics Summer Camp for Kids is a very good way for kids to learn Robotics during summer vacations, allowing kids to develop future-ready skills like robotics, coding, AI, and IoT. These camps provide a fun and engaging experience, enabling children to explore and develop their interests in robotics while making the most of their summer break. Parents should look for good quality, personalized summer camps run by experts. It is also important for kids to have robotics kits at home during summers so they can spend their time experimenting. It is also recommended to enroll in online robotics summer camps as kids can continue pursuing their interest even once summer break ends.

FAQs on Robotics for Kids

1. What is a robot?

Most people think robots are machines that look and act like humans but not necessarily. Robots are machines that have the ability to think and act to help humans. Few simple examples of robots are mobile phones, washing machine, vaccum cleaner, etc. Know more about "What is a robot?" in this article from Britannica here.

2. At what age should you start Robotics for kids?

Several studies have been conducted by top research organizations across the globe. According to Research from Tuft University’s Department of Child Development, the right age to start learning robotics is 7 to 8. Here is an article which discusses in detail about the right age to start learning robotics for kids.

3. What are the different types of robots?

There are different types of robots - Autonomous Robots, Semi-Autonomous Robots and Manual Robots. This categorization is done based on how much control is by the robot itself and how much is done manually.

4. How do I start robotics for my kids?

In our experience, we found 4 effective ways to teach robotics for kids. Here is a very good article which explains how to teach robotics to kids.

5. What is the main purpose of robots?

The main purpose of robots is to help humans by making their life easier and to replace human tasks which are considered dangerous, mundane, and monotonous. Simply put robots are machines that make our lives easy & secure.

6. Why do we have robotics for kids?

Robotics is the new age learning for kids to develop real-world skills in a fun & practical way. Here are 10 reasons how robotics help kids improve.

7. How can I explain robotics in simple words to my child?

Robots are machines that can think and act. This is a very simple answer which you can provide to your kids. Basically, robots are machines that are programmed to listen to specific commands and react to them according to the programmed instructions.

8. What is the hardest part of introducing robotics to kids?

You will come across a lot of challenges while taking the initiative to introduce robotics to your kids. We have written another article that explains this topic in more detail and we also listed out a few ways in which you can easily introduce Robotics to kids. Read more about how you can introduce robotics to your kids.

9. Which mode is better for my child's robotics learning - online or offline classes?

When deciding whether your child should learn robotics online or offline, consider crucial factors like trained instructors, robotics kit quality, whether you get rbotics kit to home, who developed the curriculum, and institute reviews. For an in-depth understanding of the importance of each factor, read our detailed blog on online vs offline robotics classes for kids.