High school students in Gaziantep province are learning coding with a humanoid robot named Pepper, which they programmed themselves.
The students, who can establish dialogue interactively with the artificial intelligence robot in robotic classes and make him do whatever they want, have a chance to see the information about coding that they have learned in practice. Neriman Ersönmez, the robotics teacher at Gaziantep Sanko Schools Science and Technology High School, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that robots are now in every stage of daily life, and people have started to spend more time with them recently.
Noting that courses such as robotics, mechatronics and coding are compulsory and that all 9th and 10th-grade students take them, Ersönmez explained that the students can also develop their skills in these subjects through club lessons.
"We got Pepper from France last year and introduced it to our students. In this sense, we are a first. Our students learn to program in an interactive way with it. Robots have started to have more of a place in our lives day by day. Therefore, we want it to give lessons, as well. Pepper is programmed by our students," she continued, stating that they included this humanoid robot in education in order to increase the awareness of students in robots.
Neriman Ersönmez drew attention that Pepper's abilities are coordinated with the students' imagination and reported, "We think that we have come to a very good point by embodying programming with Pepper. We bought Pepper as hardware. However, as the programming levels of our students increased, they brought it to lecturing level by programming it. After Pepper was included in our school, our programming lessons became more concrete. Our students started to gain a certain perspective on where robots can come in our lives. They can do many transactions in the point of where we can use robots and how we can make our lives easier. It is beneficial in this aspect."
Remarking that they also had a robot before Pepper, she added, "Having such a laboratory at a high school level gives our students a different vision. Seeing things that they can see at university in high school makes them start university a little ahead."
İpek Akkuş, a 10th grade student, said, "We have an education that satisfies the requirements of the era here. In this sense, working with Pepper in the field of software is so good. It is very exciting to make educational studies that will affect our professional choice in the future. Artificial intelligence is a promising issue. It is a plus point for us to start working in high school. Pepper has some interactions with us even if it is not as much as a teacher's interactions."