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Posted on Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

View from the classroom: Riverside Presbyterian Day School

Debbie Rogers is the Director of Instructional Digital Design at the Riverside Presbyterian Day School in Jacksonville, Florida. She kindly took the time to speak with us about her class and how her students are working with KIBO.

Debbie came across KinderLab Robotics and KIBO following the introduction of Scratch Jr. to her school. After meeting with our team, hearing about the research behind KIBO’s development and seeing KIBO in action, Debbie knew that KIBO would be a great fit.

“To me, what really makes it powerful is that it’s designed developmentally, not just to be a marketable product. The research and the physicality of the wooden blocks are comfortable to a traditional teacher,” said Debbie about her choice to invest in KIBO for her school.

Riverside Presbyterian Day School is dedicated to introducing coding to children. This year more children and teachers are spending time on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math), and have access to a designated STEAM room at the school. Debbie, her team, and the teachers promote a broader design systems mindset amongst the students without a focus on specifics such as coding fundamentals. From these programs children learn creatively to understand sequences and to solve problems systematically. With KIBO the Riverside Presbyterian Day School cultivates curiosity for the technical world, teaches problem solving and helps students to learn hands-on concepts such as cause-and-effect, sequencing and loops.

Robotics and KIBO were introduced to students by taking students’ previous stories, which had been made using Scratch Jr., and then helping the students make stories and characters come to life in the physical world. Through this method, young students get to experience and compare computer-based memory to reading and scanning a new program.

Debbie and her team have used KIBO with preschoolers, kindergarteners, second and third graders. Debbie feels that this resonates with the developmentally-appropriate nature of KIBO, and proves the importance of open-ended play in early education. The younger children were able to build KIBO and start programming in minutes, while the older children—used to reading and following set instructions—took more time, asked more questions and engaged differently.

“KIBO is certainly very-well designed for the younger mind, the 4-7 year-old age group that the team at KinderLab Robotics wanted to create it for. KIBO allows inductive, constructive learning. I don’t need to give the students instructions first. Instead we’re deriving our own instructions and creating our own definitions. It’s exploratory and a very open way to teach and to bond with students.”

To learn more about incorporating KIBO into your classroom, please get in touch today.

 

Posted on Thursday, January 15th, 2015

KinderLab Robotics selected by NSF to exhibit at FETC 2015

FETC 2015 (Booth 1430) – Orlando, Florida – January 20-23, 2015KinderLab Robotics, a creator of toys and educational tools that teach four to seven year-olds to program and understand logic, has been selected by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to exhibit at the 2015 FETC conference.

The FETC conference brings together technology experts and innovators with teachers, principals and deans, district administrators, and curriculum designers. Keynotes, networking opportunities and hands-on workshops enable discussions on new teaching ideas and methods, emerging technologies, and advance technology integration in the classroom.

KinderLab Robotics has been selected by the NSF to showcase its developmentally-appropriate robot kit, KIBO, which teaches the fundamental of programming to children aged four to seven years old. KIBO develops cognitive, social, emotional and motor skills, and encourages open-ended play while its customizable platform combines technology with expressive arts.

Mitch Rosenberg, CEO and co-founder of KinderLab Robotics, said: “We’re honored to have been selected by the NSF, and are excited to share our experience, ideas – and to showcase KIBO – at this year’s event. KIBO was born out of 15 years of child development research and we are dedicated to helping teachers improve the trajectory of computer science and STEAM education. Technology is an integral part of our lives, and it’s imperative that children learn at an early age how to approach it. With KIBO, teachers and children find learning about technology to be creative and fun.”

Last year, NSF awarded KinderLab Robotics a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to help fund product design, manufacturing research and market testing of KIBO.

KinderLab Robotics will be at booth 1430 from January 20-23. To get in touch before the event, please email: [email protected].

Follow KinderLab Robotics on Twitter and Facebook for live event updates.

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About KinderLab Robotics Inc.

KinderLab Robotics creates toys and educational tools that enable young children to learn critical technical, problem-solving, and cognitive skills in a developmentally appropriate and playful way. While STEM education products exist for middle- and high-school students, KinderLab uniquely fills a need for a critical population: children under the age of seven. KinderLab products are based on over 15 years of academic and field research into how young children learn foundational concepts in programming and engineering, by integrating them into a multidisciplinary curriculum that includes literacy, the expressive arts and cultural studies.

KinderLab Robotics is headquartered in Arlington, Massachusetts. It was founded by Marina Umaschi Bers and Mitch Rosenberg in May 2013. The first KIBO prototype, KIWI, was created in the DevTech labs of Tufts University in 2008. www.kinderlabrobotics.com