Last week I chose Robert and the Robot by Eva Schwab to read to my second grade class. The kids are getting mighty restless here at the end of the year and so I chose this book because the topic, robots, was something the boys would definitely like and I thought it would pretty much appeal to all of the students. I was right. They loved this story!
Young Robert finds an extraterrestrial solution to cleaning his messy bedroom when he repairs an ailing robot named Hugo 2. In gratitude, Hugo agrees to clean Robert’s room.
This book was the opening for some great conversations, such as what the kids would make their own robot do if they had one and what it would look like. We talked about how many robots today are actually being designed to help people. So often, these kids have seen robots in nothing but horror-type movies, so naturally, they just assumed all robots were evil.
To give them a visual of an innovative robot, I showed them this clip of Asimo, a robot built by Honda and considered to be the most advanced robot made.
They were captivated and it really took it a minute or two to sink in for them that this was not a human in a robot costume. I have to admit, Asimo seemed almost unreal to me, too, at first.
This was one of the most enjoyable lessons we have had all year, and I plan to incorporate more media into my lessons next school year.