LEGO-sponsored study: Kids think robots are cooler than parents, teachers

Mark Raby - Feb 3, 2012
LEGO-sponsored study: Kids think robots are cooler than parents, teachers

If your parents were robots, you wouldn't have to do chores. If your teachers were robots, learning would be fun. At least, that's the response that kids provided in a study conducted by a research company called Latitude, in tandem with a group called the LEGO Learning Institude and Project Synthesis. The experiment looked at 350 elementary-grade students from the ages of 8 and 12, from the countries of Australia, France, Germany, South Africa, the UK, and the US.

The children - who are perhaps the best subjects in any study because society hasn't taught them to lie and cheat - were asked to describe what life would be like if robots were part of their everyday routine. They were also asked to draw a corresponding picture. The results as tabulated by Latitude were interesting - 38% described robots that could help them learn, and the same amount, 38%, described robots that could play with them.

And those two 38% overlapped significantly in their descriptions. Many children talked about robots being able to teach new things in a fun and engaging way, assumedly something their current teachers aren't doing such a good job of. And the children also described their home lives with robot interaction, many of which discussing a world where their robots could do their chores. We'd bet even the majority of adults would say the same thing. 66% of the children in the study envisioned a world where robots would have the same level of intelligence as humans. So, scientists, get cracking - you've got a lot of young kinds out there who are expecting hella cool robots when they grow up.

[via Forbes]

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