Robots help Colorado students with speech, social skills

The use of robots with students with diverse learning needs, especially students on the autism spectrum, is a “game-changer.”

Author: Silvia Romero Solis (Longmont Leader)

LONGMONT, Colo. — The department of special education at St. Vrain Valley School District worked throughout the school year with the Innovation Center’s robotics program to help students with diverse learning needs with social skills by using robots, according to a news release from SVVSD.

A project team of high school students developed Socially Assistive Robotics applications at the Innovation Center. In January, they partnered with teachers and staff at five district schools and used robots to support special education students with self-regulation, self-determination and socialization, according to Mari Stevenson, SVVSD special education area coordinator.

The schools participating in the collaboration are Longmont Estates Elementary, Eagle Crest Elementary, Indian Peaks Elementary, Longs Peak Middle School and Soaring Heights PK-8.

“It’s a collaboration and partnership between the Special Education Department, (special education) teachers, technology teachers, Innovation Center staff and (high school) student designers, all working as a team not only to build (the tools) but elevating the technology integration for all of our kids,” Stevenson said.