Robots are hugely popular with kids. Want proof? Four of the 20 best-selling toys on Amazon during the 2018 holiday season were robots, robotics kits, or other electronic circuitry kits. So it’s not surprising that K-12 educators would turn to robotics as a way to get students excited about science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) education.
Worldwide, schools spent $146.5 million on robotics products and curricula in 2018, and this figure is expected to grow annually by 28 percent through 2023, reaching $640.5 million by that time. Some of the many companies that sell robotics kits to schools include LEGO Education, Pitsco Education, Sphero, Ozobot, Modular Robotics, VEX Robotics, and BirdBrain Technologies.
Reasons for this surge
Why is the K-12 robotics market exploding? Educators are finding that robotics is a great way to introduce STEAM skills and concepts to students of all ages.
For one thing, robotics helps bring STEAM concepts to life through engaging, hands-on learning opportunities. Students enjoy being creative, and building and programming their own robot to do simple tasks allows them to flex their creative muscles. Along the way, students are learning key concepts in math, physics, coding, and engineering, and they’re seeing how these principles apply within real-world scenarios—so their learning is more likely to stick.
Another reason for the surge in robotics education is that robotics is a rapidly growing industry. Integrating robotics into the curriculum exposes students to practical skills that could lead to a promising career.