1. ITV Report

Robot teaching children in Birmingham

Ben the robot plays interactive games and then rewards children with a dance Photo: ITV Central

Knee-high robots are the latest learning aid for children with autism at Topcliffe Primary School in Birmingham.

The two robots, called Ben and Max, have been developed by a Paris based robotics company.

Children are rewarded with a dance from Ben the robot Credit: ITV Central

The robots can play a number of interactive mind games with the children and rewards them with a dance.

Human expressions seem complex to children with autism which is why the robots are so successful Credit: ITV Central

The complex expressions of the human face can be confusing and even intimidating to children with autism, who respond better to the robot's black features.

"What the robots can do is that they can take away everything happening at once. So the child can really just focus on body language or the child can just focus on the eye contact. It is more predictable, it is more structured, and therefore safer for the child."

– Karen Guldberg Autism Centre for Education and Research
Research has shown children with autism respond well to learning with technology Credit: ITV Central

The robots have been such a success the school would like one in every classroom.