Getting Kids Involved in Robotics and Programming

9 June 2016, BKK Kids

As technology continues to play an integral part in our daily lives, teaching children to program or code is becoming increasingly important to equip them for the jobs of the future. And the basics are easy to learn from an early age. The following places teach the fundamental skills, including logic, decision-making and problem-solving – all through fun and interactive classes.

1. Bricks 4 Kidz

Through the simple practice of playing and building with LEGO® bricks, Bricks 4 Kidz introduces a number of key cognitive concepts to children, including creativity, construction and teamwork. In the more advanced classes, older children begin to learn about computer programming and robotics through interactive sessions involving motors, sensors and software. It’s in these classes that students really begin to flex their mental muscles, acquiring a range of vital skills including problem-solving, critical thinking, engineering, mathematics and physics. Bricks 4 Kidz’ now has over 400 worldwide branches – including 5 in Bangkok.

2. Kids Robotics Learning Center

Aimed at children between 3 to 16 year old, Kids Robotics Learning Center teaches programming to toddlers and teenagers through building robots. In the most advanced class, children aged 8 to 16 are given the opportunity to build, program and test their own robots using NXT-G programming. This involves getting hands-on training using motors, intelligent units and sensors – all of which helps to develop a wider knowledge in areas like engineering, mathematics, science and technology. For those that want to get even more involved, the center runs additional specialised robotics workshops as well as robotics camps during the school holidays.

3. IWICA Chess School

At IWICA, the game of chess is promoted as a game that can help develop a wealth of vital cognitive skills including strategy, critical thinking, logic, pattern recognition and decision-making. Courses cater from first-timers up to advanced players and come certified by the Ministry of Education and World Chess Federation. Kids can attend courses and then participate in tournaments to put their skills to the test. Although chess is the main focus, IWICA also runs its own robotics programming courses for children between 5 to 17 years old. The school has two centres in Bangkok: the main centre is along Sathu Pradit Road, Chongnonsi, while the Sukhumvit centre is located near Prakhanong BTS station.

4. Project Lab

With a new facility on Pattanakarn 51, Project Lab offers interdisciplinary STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) robotics education courses that are designed especially for children. The structure of the courses are project based, meaning that students will have a design project to complete in each class. All of the teaching is conducted using Lego EV3 Mindstorms equipment, which is a customizable robot kit with mechanical parts, sensors and motors. The Beginner Course is geared for children 8 and above. In the Intermediate and Advanced Courses, each robot takes more time to build and program; students can select the particular robots they want to build.

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