Can a robot help Germany integrate its influx of migrants? A new research project thinks the answer might be yes.
More than 1 million refugees reached Germany last year. Children represent around 25 percent of the refugees and migrants arriving in Europe, according to the International Organization for Migration.
That’s where “Nao” comes in. Researchers at Germany’s Bielefeld University are testing whether the high-tech, wide-eyed robot can help teach migrant children language skills.
“Kids respond very positively to the small humanoid robot Nao that we are programming,” said Stefan Kopp, an artificial intelligence expert working on the project. “They are highly motivated and its fun for them to interact with the technology.”
The “El Tutor” project aims to explore how social robots can assist with second language teaching at pre-schools, like being used for classroom exercises.
“The robot might actually ask the child for help at times,” Kopp said. It also can offer fun responses when a child performs well.