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Meet 'Root' the Robot Helping Kids Learn to Code

Computer science courses are at an all time high in K-12 schools across the nation. In some schools, a little guy named Root (who has been designed to teach both children and adults how to code) is a strong presence.

“Zivthan Dubrovsky leads a bio-inspired robotics team at Harvard’s Wyss Institute, and knows a lot about spark,” according to Wired.  

“As he explains it, it’s an event that happens early in a person’s experience with programming or computers—a formative experience that inspires a desire to learn that comes from within.”

Dubrovsky believes that Root could be the solution to the holds in coding exercises. What’s interesting about Root is its design as well as the ability to integrate itself with other tools such as a iPad.

“Root is a small, squat hexagon, a cheerful and friendly ‘bot reminiscent of the robot vacuum-cleaning Roomba,” according to the report.

“Scanners dot its bottom, bumpers line its sides, and there’s a touch interface on top. Root knows when it’s on a magnetic surface. A little holder for a dry-erase marker sits dead center on the bot, which can draw on a whiteboard and erase it, too.”

Kids use iPads, whiteboards and a coding language to show Root how to interact with the world. 

“Drawing kids into coding isn’t an abstract mission. Computing jobs are growing at twice the national rate of other types of employment,” according to Wired.

“By 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says, the US will have 1 million more computer science-related jobs than graduates qualified to fill them.”

The push is being backed by President Barack Obama and his $4 billion computer science initiative, which happens to be another big reason for developers to create products in the space.

Read the full story.

Article by Navindra Persaud, Education World Contributor

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