Teacher Training in Educational Robotics: The ROBOESL Project Paradigm

This paper presents the training curriculum for teachers developed in the context of the ERASMUS+ project, ROBOESL (2015–2017). The paper focuses on the robotics-based learning methodologies inspired by constructivism and project-based learning principles and implemented within the framework of the ROBOESL training and learning activities. The ROBOESL project (www.roboesl.eu) is an innovative one in educational robotics (ER) in the sense that it introduces ER as a learning tool for children at risk of school failure and early school leaving (ESL). The ambition of the project is to engage students at risk of school failure in an attractive learning environment that can rebuild confidence, self-esteem and social skills and eventually offer a pathway to further schooling. Based on the belief that the role of teachers is crucial for the success of this endeavor, we developed a training curriculum that aims in enabling teachers to master the technical and pedagogical skills that are necessary in order to use the robotic technologies in school, enrich their teaching and learning activities in classrooms with robotics and, finally, become able to develop their own robotics activities by using innovative, student-centered and constructivist pedagogical approaches with a focus on preventing school failure and ESL. The paper presents the main innovative characteristics of the training curriculum and concludes with exemplary training activities for teachers in the form of ready to use worksheets.

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