K–12


Ten jobs that are safe from robots - The Hechinger Report

#artificialintelligence

Yes, the robots are definitely coming for the jobs of America's 3.5 million cashiers. Just ask the retail workers who've already been displaced by automated checkout machines. Robots may also be coming for radiologists, whose expertise diagnosing diseases through X-rays and MRIs is facing stiff competition from artificial intelligence. And robots are starting to do some of the work in professions as diverse as chef, office clerk and tractor-trailer operator. For most of us, though, the robot invasion will simply change the tasks we do, not destroy our jobs altogether.


A Machine Learning Approach for Detecting Students at Risk of Low Academic Achievement

arXiv.org Machine Learning

We aim to predict whether a primary school student will perform in the `below standard' band of a national standardized test. We exploit a data set containing test performance on the National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN); a test given annually to all Australian school students in grades 3, 5, 7, and 9. We separate the analysis into students in grade 5 and above, for which previous achievement may be used as a predictor; and students in grade 3, which must rely on family- and school-level predictors only. We train and compare a set of classifiers for reading and numeracy learning areas respectively. The classifiers achieve good predictive power in terms of area under the ROC curve, suggesting that it is feasible for schools to more accurately screen a large number of students for academic risk.


Singapore aims to build up AI skills for digital economy

ZDNet

Singapore is looking to build up local skillsets in artificial intelligence (AI) through two new initiatives, with the aim to enrol 12,000 industry professionals and young students. Spearheaded by AI Singapore, a local programme under Singapore's National Research Foundation, the new initiatives hoped to demonstrate how AI technologies could be applied to daily lives and enable professionals to use such tools to boost productivity. Technology innovation and investment alone will not guarantee a thriving smart nation, which also will need user-friendly public services and a population that is willing to accept the wave of changes. The government earlier had earmarked AI as one of four technologies essential in driving Singapore's push to be a "digitally ready" nation and its digital economy. AI Singapore's executive chairman Ho Teck Hua said: "AI has the potential to catalyse change.


Robot teachers invade Chinese kindergartens

Daily Mail

It also comes fitted with a small screen to interact with the pupils and is being used by teachers to tell stories and present logic problems to the kindergarten students. More than 600 kindergartens across the country have been equipped with a Keeko bot and the makers of the round machine hope to expand into Greater China and Southeast Asia. Children watch a Keeko robot (pictured) at the Yiswind Institute of Multicultural Education in Beijing, where the intelligent machines are telling stories and challenging kids with logic problems. When the children get an answer right the robot's face flashes with heart eyes The armless robot moves on tiny wheels and has inbuilt cameras that double up as navigational sensors and a front-facing camera. 'Education today is no longer a one-way street, where the teacher teaches and students just learn,' said Candy Xiong, a teacher trained in early childhood education who now works with Keeko Robot Xiamen Technology as a trainer.


Japan set to deploy English-speaking robots to schools: Report

ZDNet

Japan's Ministry of Education is reportedly planning to place English-speaking robots in schools around the country to help children improve their English oral communication skills. According to a report from Japan's national broadcaster NHK, the ministry will launch the initiative in April in about 500 schools nationwide as part of a trial. It will also make study apps and "online conversation sessions" with native English speakers available to students, the report said. Japan is under pressure to improve the English language skills of elementary school teachers, NHK added, but lacks funding to hire English native speakers in every school, with the rollout of English-speaking robots to provide a cheaper or easier option. NHK added that Japanese students are "generally not good" at speaking or writing in English, and curriculum guidelines that are due to be implemented in two years will focus on nurturing such skills.


How One District Is Preparing Students for an AI-Powered World

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You've got a classroom filled with middle school students working out math problems on computers. Which students are knocking them out with ease? In a pilot test of math software at David E. Williams (DEW) Middle School in Coraopolis, Pa., emojis tell the smart-glasses-wearing teacher what she needs to know. A smiling emoji hovers over a student's head: That means the student is progressing nicely. A frown emoji indicates struggle.


A transformative summer for student engineers

MIT News

Visitors roaming the MIT Stratton Student Center chatted with high school students stationed at various booths, as 3-D printers hummed and a remote-controlled inflatable shark swam above their heads. Down the street at the Johnson Ice Rink, self-driving miniature racecars hurtled down a racetrack while onlookers cheered them on. This was the scene on Sunday, Aug. 5 at the final event of the Beaver Works Summer Institute (BWSI), a four-week summer science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program for rising high school seniors. BWSI is an initiative of Beaver Works, a research and education center jointly operated by MIT Lincoln Laboratory and the MIT School of Engineering. BWSI started in 2016 with 46 students.


4 Questions to Determine Whether Educators Need Artificial Intelligence - Market Brief

#artificialintelligence

The concept of artificial intelligence and what it can do for education still remains elusive to many in the K-12 education space. A conversation I had recently with an assistant superintendent at the Colorado Association of School Executives convention underscored this idea. We began talking about artificial intelligence and district leader said, "You know, there's not a week that goes by that my superintendent isn't talking about AI!" But when I asked what the superintendent wanted to use AI for, the assistant superintendent just kind of looked at me with a raised eyebrow and shrugged. Artificial intelligence is in the water right now (some might say the Kool-Aid.) However, like many technical innovations from the past couple of decades, what it is and how it works is still a mystery to many people.


Artificial intelligence has a racial bias problem. Google is funding summer camps to try to change that

USATODAY

On a sunny Monday afternoon in Oakland, AI4All alum Ananya Karthik gathered a few dozen girls to show them how to use the Deep Dream Generator program to fuse images together and create a unique piece of art. OAKLAND -- Through connections made at summer camp, high school students Aarvu Gupta and Lili Sun used artificial intelligence to create a drone program that aims to detect wildfires before they spread too far. Rebekah Agwunobi, a rising high school senior, learned enough to nab an internship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab, working on using artificial intelligence to evaluate the court system, including collecting data on how judges set bail. Both projects stemmed from the Oakland, Calif.-based nonprofit AI4All, which will expand its outreach to young under-represented minorities and women with a $1 million grant from Google.org, the technology giant's philanthropic arm announced Friday. Artificial intelligence is becoming increasingly commonplace in daily life, found in everything from Facebook's face detection feature for photos to Apple's iPhone X facial recognition.


Diverse Yokohama school aims to be model for bridging cultural gaps

The Japan Times

YOKOHAMA – Yokohama has been a cultural intersection between Japanese, foreign residents and visitors from overseas ever since opening its port to international trade in 1859, leading what was once a sleepy fishing village to become home to one of the first foreign communities in the country and develop into a bustling city of nearly 4 million. However, even in a city that has historically been so foreigner-friendly and was home to 9,129 foreign-born and multiethnic students last year, it's quite rare to find a public school like Minami Yoshida Elementary School, where 57 percent of the students have foreign roots. With its unique events and local volunteer language assistants, the school has seen the number of foreign students surge by about 20 percentage points in the past seven years. Its popularity among foreign residents lies in the multicultural events and language lectures, many of which are hosted by school principal Tetsuo Fujimoto, whose motto is, "Cherish your own identity, but speak Japanese in class." Located just over 2 km west of Chinatown in Minami Ward, the school's student body of 748 now has 430 multiethnic Japanese and non-Japanese pupils hailing from 16 countries.