Working With Robots: Design and Evaluation of an Introductory Computer Science Teaching Unit With Educational Robots


As our world continues to digitalize more and more, Computer Science concepts have started to interweave with our daily life. Accordingly, teaching these concepts in schools is becoming increasingly relevant. An illustrative and practical way to do this is by using haptic examples of these very same concepts in form of educational robots. This offers the benefit of motivating and playful access to the field for young students. However, to integrate the robots productively into Computer Science lessons, engaging teaching units are essential. To support the design of those teaching units, we surveyed students and teachers to evaluate their preferences regarding the use of robots in Computer Science lessons. The survey had 95 participants, 6 teachers, and 86 students, from 6 different classes of 4 different schools. Using the results of this survey, we further designed, conducted, and evaluated a teaching sequence for a German 6th-grade Computer Science course. As a robot, we used the educational kit LEGO MINDSTORMS (Model 51515) alongside Apple iPads. The course consisted of 30 students, 15 of them male and 15 female, aged between 11 and 13. During the sequence, we observed the students’ motivation and their progress in learning computer programming concepts. We also examined the results of their exercises. We found that the robots positively impacted the students’ motivation and learning process. In this paper, we present both the survey and the teaching unit, as well as their respective results.

Author Information
Kira Bungert, Frauenhofer FKIE, Germany
Maren Bennewitz, University of Bonn, Germany
Lilli Bruckschen, Frauenhofer FKIE, Germany

Paper Information
Conference: ECE2022
Stream: Design

This paper is part of the ECE2022 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Bungert K., Bennewitz M., & Bruckschen L. (2022) Working With Robots: Design and Evaluation of an Introductory Computer Science Teaching Unit With Educational Robots ISSN: 2188-1162 The European Conference on Education 2022: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon