Robots for Specialised Education
Pepper and NAO’s neutral and soft expressions offer effective and inclusive environments to promote education with IEP (Individualized Education Program) for students with disabilities such as autism, emotional and behavioral disorders.
Our emotional robots help children reduce shyness, reluctance, frustration, and boost confidence, social skills and self-esteem. They are good tools to encourage the acceptance of special education in a regular classroom setting, developing positive attitudes and perceptions of special education.
From past deployments and observations, children have demonstrated great interest in NAO as they discuss and interact with NAO with no hesitation. NAO allows educational resources to be set in motion to allow children to be more dynamic, attentive, active and conducive to interaction.
In special education, NAO makes it possible to supplement the educational tools already present in educational establishments. NAO can become a tool to strengthen these tools through the advantages it offers like neutral features, easily programmable, and ability to tell stories.
The tablet application is essential to benefit fully from AskNAO suite. Thanks to it, NAO robot has an additional media to show and describe, which increases its possibilities with exercises that can not be satisfied with oral answers, such as questions on conjugation or forms choice.
Ask NAO Tablet offers a variety of flexibility and activities with NAO, such as being able to launch applications on the tablet, control the volume, movements and speech. It also offers customizable quizzes, and Choregraphe libraries!
For SoftBank Robotics, every student has an unlimited potential. Autism is very important and has a special place in our company. We set out to create events, webinars, and even when we participate in trade shows to raise awareness about autism, and also to bring attention to the power of robotics and the positive impact it has in developing social skills for people with autism. To see our past and future events, click below!
Use cases and testimonies
DREAM project: simplifying robot-assisted therapy for ASD
A project that involved psychologists, cognitive scientists, roboticists, computer vision researchers, and ethicists, the DREAM project is coordinated by the University of Skövde in Sweden. DREAM project or Development of Robot-Enhanced therapy for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders project, aims to investigate the clinical utility of Robot-Assisted Therapy (RAT) delivered with a supervised-autonomy framework.
The project’s aim is to increase the robot’s autonomy during RAT in order to reduce the workload of therapists, psychologists or teachers, by letting parts of the intervention be taken over by the robot without altering the clinical utility of the intervention.
The main goal of the DREAM Project is to develop a hybrid solution in which the robot is sufficiently autonomous to be an effective autonomous tool for the therapist, but at the same time under the control of the therapist in order to deliver the therapy effectively.
According to the Vrije University of Brussels, NAO is particularly well received by young children because of its size and appearance. Children anthropomorphize NAO and readily engage in affectionate social interactions.
Naotism project: how humanoid robots encourage the emergence of behaviors necessary for communication
Since 2017, NAO has been used in a special kindergarten class in Quetigny, France to help children with ASD aged 3 to 5 to communicate better. The objective is to verify to what beneficial impacts does the presence of humanoid robots like NAO have in classrooms with autism spectrum disorders.
In the classroom, NAO comes a couple of times a week for the morning ritual. It is the welcome time when the children are gathered: the robot comes to say hello, gives the date and time and sings for gestural imitation. NAO then helps with the evaluation of instructions, words and colors. For the teacher, progress is visible.
NAO has a positive effect on the behavior of the students, because since his arrival "the robot has been able to capture the attention" explains Pauline Audry, specialist teacher of the class.
The major aspects observed of NAO are the neutrality of its face, the humanoid shape, and its size. "Children with violent behavior become more relaxed thanks to NAO", says Pascal Bourgoin, the head of the Naotism project at the Rectorat in Dijon. “NAO becomes a strong motivator and an enhancer”.