If AI is important, where should children start, and how can parents inspire their interest in learning? Do they need a foundation in programming? Should children be introduced to various AI algorithms?
Chen Sheng-Wei, Executive Director of the Taiwan Artificial Intelligence School and Chief Technology Officer of Yuanta Financial Holdings, offers advice to parents:
"The technology of AI makes a major breakthrough every three months. By the time children graduate from university and enter society, AI will be significantly different from today. Therefore, there's no need for rote teaching or in-depth mathematical theories. The first priority is to make children unafraid of computers and create a well-designed learning environment with situational teaching. Let children naturally understand how AI works and feel how AI will connect with their lives in the future."
"For routine tasks in life, encourage children to think and use AI. Through simple programming tools like Scratch and Arduino, let them assemble and design solutions on their own. This is a way parents or teachers can design learning methods that involve children in AI."
Integrating the Ministry of Education's 108 Information Technology Curriculum, the U.S. CSTA K12 Computer Science Learning Framework, and recommendations from the American Association for Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), comprehensive AI learning from Grade 1 (K1) to Grade 12 (K12) should encompass six major processes:
According to the curriculum design by the Ministry of Education, Computational Thinking aims to cultivate children's ability to think using computational tools, enabling them to analyze problems, develop problem-solving methods, and make effective decisions. Programming is considered a feasible method for cultivating Computational Thinking.
Introduce children to sensor components, help them understand how computers perceive the world through sensors, and explore various sensors such as visual, auditory, vibration, light, temperature, etc. Understand the differences and limitations between computer perception and human perception.
Representation and Reasoning
Teach knowledge representation and various reasoning algorithms. Explore how computers classify and recognize information, leading to inference and decision-making. Examples include simple classification, multiple classifications, and the application of decision tree algorithms.
Machine Learning is a core technology of Artificial Intelligence. Through practical implementation, children can learn that machines can learn from data. Explore supervised learning, unsupervised learning, and reinforcement learning as three machine learning methods. Understand the basics of neural network architecture and how the choice of training data affects machine learning outcomes.
Explore the integration of multiple artificial intelligence technologies, such as image recognition, speech recognition, and automated robots, to achieve natural interaction with humans. Allow children to interact with intelligent devices to understand the principles behind the operation of robots and be aware of their limitations.
Encourage children to pay attention to biases and ethical issues related to artificial intelligence. Discuss potential positive and negative impacts on society. As future citizens, they should maintain critical thinking skills and make informed choices regarding the development and use of AI technologies in social construction and services.
In the next decade, AI technology will accelerate its integration into various industries and become an integral part of our daily lives. The six learning processes in AI education for K-12 students aim to empower them with critical thinking and creativity. With practical implementation, children can explore opportunities in various fields where AI technology will play a crucial role. AI will create new opportunities, and technological advancements will delegate repetitive and complex tasks to technology. This will give individuals more time to focus on meaningful activities. Considering alternative methods of professional evaluation and the time invested daily, individuals should reflect on their priorities and passions to find a meaningful direction for their future.