This Bengaluru school has robots as teachers and teachers as mentors
A humanoid robot teaching in a Bengaluru school in India could perhaps be the first in the country to be a teacher assistant.
Meet Eagle 2.0, a humanoid robot, who was introduced as an assistant teacher in Indus International School in Bengaluru. Dressed in a white top, black skirt and a scarf around her neck, Eagle 2.0 teaches physics, chemistry, biology, geography and history to students in classes 7, 8 and 9 in the school.
This humanoid robot, which works alongside human teachers in delivering lessons, is designed in such a way that it specialises in two-way communication. This means that the robot not only teaches the students but also asks them questions and also gives feedback on their answers.
Eagle 2.0 was built in house by a team of 17 members comprising content developers, who have experience in different areas such as teaching, graphic design, and animation. The robots were developed over two years and the motor used in the robot has been imported from the U.S. and is the same as the one used in the famous humanoid robot, Sophia.
The school administration has made three such robots with artificial intelligence (AI) at a cost of 8 lakh rupees each.
Lt. Gen. Arjun Ray, Trustee of Indus International School, said that this humanoid robot is capable of working as a good associate teacher.
“It’s a collaborative learning model that we have in place. In today’s classroom, a teacher spends 90% of the time in preparing and delivering the content that a search engine like Google can provide. She has no time for the child, who is just considered an empty vessel that can be filled with any content. With the humanoid robot taking over the role of delivering content, the teacher can teach what Google can’t. She mentors kids, teaches them how to learn, provides emotional support and ignites an entrepreneurial mindset. The robot can provide what Google does, along with formative and summative assessments. Meanwhile, students can aim at self-directed learning and design thinking. The teacher orchestrates the whole classroom,” added Ray.
This humanoid robot that has been introduced in the school as part of a pilot project, aims to find out whether humanoid robots can work alone in classrooms without teachers. The school also has plans to introduce more child-friendly and interactive robots for the school’s pre-school and primary classes along with personal humanoid tutors for students.