Social Robots Camp Wrap Up
Written by: Rachel Ware
From July 6 through the 9th the Cozmo camp took place on Zoom, with 4 great middle school students who are a part of the Girls Scouts of Southern Arizona and researchers from CGEST, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of Pittsburgh. The camp was a blend of computer science topics and Theatre of the Oppressed activities to engage power and identity as part of all the activities. The computer science topics covered included block coding to control the virtual robot Symmi, who served as a social robot agent that chatted with the students about their plans and thoughts about each coding activity.
Artificial intelligence was also covered, including the impact of algorithmic bias and a final project where the students mapped out an idea for their own AI to solve an issue they thought of in the world.
The Theatre of the Oppressed activities run by Dr. Nkrumah brought everyone closer together and encouraged students to express themselves. The exercises that Dr. Nkrumah facilitated were designed to encourage reflection on one’s identity, power dynamics, and culture. One of the activities led by Dr. Nkrumah had us represent a word with our bodies, shown in the image are the poses for order and school.
Right after the camp ended one of the parents emailed me to say:
“I would like to thank you for the great camp. My daughter really enjoyed it and it was really awesome.”
Graduate Research Assistant
Center for Gender Equity in Science and Technology