Could a social robot collaboratively exchange stories with children as a peer and help improve their linguistic and storytelling skills? We use machine learning algorithms to develop Companion AI to make robots learn to be helpful to young learners. Our robots learn actions that improve children's storytelling and keep them engaged. We are also interested in how a social robot can personalize its interaction with each child over multiple encounters, because every child learns and engages differently.
In Fall 2019, we sent 18 Jibo robots to kindergarten classrooms in Atlanta. Most children in these schools come from less privileged neighborhoods, and the main focus is in prepping children with basic literacy skills, so they're ready to learn when they get to each grade level. This ongoing project will last for the whole school year, during which time our robots will provide one-on-one, personalized story-time interaction for the young readers. Please inspect our website for teachers and parents to find detailed information about the activities.