I’ve just returned from the SXSWEDU conference in Austin, Texas where I gave a talk on computer science education for young children and signed copies of my new books: Robotics for Young Children and Coding, Robotics, and Engineering for Young Students.
The focus of my talk was on the importance of critical thinking and ethical decision making in a computer science curriculum. This is true at any level, but I believe it may be especially important in early childhood when children are first forming their ideas about the role of technology in their lives. The thinkers and writers who most influenced me as I prepared for this talk were Sherry Turkle, Mitch Resnick, and Marina Bers. I recommended their books during my session and, in particular, talked about Sherry Turkle’s research on how children perceive their robotics toys like Tamagachis.
I was pleased that my session was included in this EdSurge conference report:
I do believe we need to do more to prepare children to make wise decisions about technology, especially regarding devices and systems that involve artificial intelligence.