An increasing number of French schools are embracing the digital revolution and consequently, new subjects are making their way into the educational facilities.
In addition, the national curriculums revision which should come into effect in 2015, aims to implement extracurricular activities in every French school.
In light of this, the INRIA (French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation) project team Flowers has created a teaching module designed specifically for schools, which they called Inirobot.
Inirobot is a sequence of educational activities which will allow pupils and teachers to become acquainted with robotics.
The robotic platform chosen for the implementation of this project is the educational robot Thymio II. With its small size, light weight and colored leds, the Thymio II is the ideal learning tool for kids!
More complex sequences of activities have also been designed to match the understanding level of high school students.
Here is a video of an Inirobot project – high school level of a group of Thymio II dancing the Harlem Shake, it’s pretty cool!
The combination of the Tymio II and the Inirobot module constitute a great kit to learn more about robotics!
This mobile robot has clearly been designed with learning and creativity in mind; its body features several Lego-compatible attachment points and it is possible to add a pen in the robot to draw with it!
The 3 key learning objectives of the Inirobot module are:
- Learning a new (and probably first) computer language: the VPL (Visual Programming Language) which was developed at the EPFL (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne)
- Creating computer programs and instructions
- Finding out more about electronic circuits and the robot/computer communication and mechanics
The project team Flowers has also made an extensive resources package available to the teachers/facilitators:
- Learning objectives for each sequence
- Activity management roadmaps (inc. all the assignments answers for the teachers)
- Robot software datasheet, installation guide and user guide
- Examples of activities and tutorials
There is also a forum dedicated to this project, all questions and feedbacks are welcome!
A testing phase was launched in several school in Aquitaine, in May and June 2014, and the Inirobot learning module has been since then implemented in schools located in Talence (Bordeaux) and Lille.
Learning content for the Inirobot module