Kansas school test robots with autistic children

artikkelbilde_thumb_760Witchita, Kan – An autism specific school in Witchita, Kansas is testing out social robots with their pupils to develop their social and human interaction skills.

The experimental program at Heartspring features $16,000 robots that are programmed to sing, converse, dance, recognise faces, features, and even calm themselves after they fall.

One robot was programmed to dance Gangnam style for the children earlier in the week.

Heartspring is a non profit centre which provides outpatient paediatric services for autistic children in the area. Director of clinical services Wayne Piersel told the Kansas City Star that the robots were programmed to help children with interaction skills, and that the results had been positive.

He commented:

“The more consistent we are in teaching a new skill, the more likely we are to learn it, especially since our kids have a difficult time dealing with subtle differences. This will give us a way of providing the instruction in the same way every time.”

Autism Daily newscast reported on the benefits of using social robots on Sunday November 17.