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Feb 02, 2023

What Skills Are Developed with Lego Robotics?

A huge advantage of the kid’s mind in comparison with an adult’s one is that it is not yet clogged with patterns and stereotypes. It is easier and more interesting for a child to come up with something new and original than to take a ready-made solution. Lego Robotics develops and stimulates the technical thinking of a child, performing many functions at once:
  • Introduces children to the world of robots and creates conditions for the development of interest in robotics and programming
  • Develops intellect, imagination, and perseverance
  • Cultivates engineering and programming skills.
  • Facilitates the child’s entry into a world where many tasks will no longer be performed by humans but instead by robots with Artificial Intelligence (AI)

About Lego Robotics Programming

Lego Robotics is not only a brick set but also a curriculum that teaches children the basics of programming. But unlike some boring school programmes, Lego Mindstorms Education allows tutors to solve this problem through exciting engineering and programming practice in several stages:
  • Instructor introduces children to the secrets of assembling robots, explaining that Lego parts can be used to create any useful smart automaton. A robot is not always a humanoid, it can be a machine or mechanism that performs certain functions.
  • Through the example of ready-made solutions, the children see demonstrations of how the robot is assembled.
  • The role of the key elements that allow the robot to perceive the world (sensors) and move (motors) is explained. The instructor also reveals the role of the robot ‘brain’, which ensures the automaton, programming, and communication with the robot.
  • After the children understand the principles of programming with the help of demonstration models, they can build and programme any other mechanisms to set them in motion.

What Is Lego Robotics, and How Does It Work?

Lego Mindstorms Education EV3 is a completely self-sufficient set that children can use for both building and programming robots. It consists of several key components that are assembled into all sorts of models – from mechanical arms to moon rovers or musical instruments:
  • “Intelligent brick” as a robot control centre, or its brain’. It looks like a mini-computer to which you connect cables that will guide the robot's behaviour.
  • Peripheral devices, which are sensory-motor systems. With the help of sensors, the robot perceives the functional environment, depending on the tasks assigned to it. With the help of manipulators, it performs the necessary actions, such as moving or taking something, printing, or producing sounds.
  • Cables that connect all the necessary elements into one working system.
  • Parts are used for assembling the body of the automatic device.
The robot will only “come to life” once the child takes one more step after the assembly - they just need to write a simple programme to give the robot’s ‘brain’ the necessary commands. As each kid masters the basics of programming, he/she will be able to come up with more complex kinds of tasks for robots and even make discoveries and inventions important for Mankind!

In summary, Lego education consists of two critical skills: engineering and programming. Through the process of delving more deeply into Lego Education Mindstorms, they develop and improve. Thanks to this, children can see how they can bring ideas to life and how to "tell" the robots what to do through various commands.

Benefits of Lego Robotics

The use of Lego in education helps children learn in practice all the rules and principles of programming that very quickly disappear from their minds when taught through more traditional methods. Other benefits of Lego Mindstorms for education include the following:
  • Opportunities to put the acquired knowledge into practice. The activation of a child’s motor functions when assembling robots facilitates the transfer of knowledge from the level of understanding to the level of practice.
  • Stimulation of the creative abilities of the child. The examples of unique automatic devices created by other children can encourage pupils to go beyond ready-made models, with their detailed assembly instructions, and create something of their own.
  • Learning to think "in reverse order" from the goal (what needs to be done?) to the means (how can this be done?). This pattern of thinking is fundamentally important for future innovators who will be better placed to solve socially significant issues.
  • Team working. When developing projects with other kids, children master their cooperative behaviour and develop the ability to objectively assess all ideas put forward and select the best option, regardless of whether it was their own. This is a crucial social skill for future software developers that usually work on their challenging tasks in teams.
  • The Lego robotics kit for programming will be interesting for both children and parents. Shared assembly and programming of robots can be an exciting unifying task for both older and younger children in the family, as well as their parents. Being engaged in a joint creative process, different generations mutually learn and enrich each other.
  • The passion for assembling and programming robots may transform into a professional path in the future. In this case, learning more complex things will be easier thanks to the solid foundations built using Lego robotics.
Lego Mindstorms for kids is an indispensable tool in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) education. Using this system, the knowledge gained through playful activities is not rejected by children and does not seem complicated to them. On the contrary, this knowledge is easily perceived, assimilated, and made personal. With the help of an instructor, who is simultaneously a friend and a mentor for kids, they will easily step into the world of complex automatic devices with Lego Robotics.

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