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AI for Kids: Resources and Guide

Updated: Apr 10, 2022

How kids and beginners can start learning Artificial Intelligence AI and AI-Literacy

Artificial Intelligence is all around us, and now our kids can also learn AI. In this blog post, we answer some basic questions that parents and teachers may have about AI and how kids can learn it.

What is Artificial Intelligence?

Artificial Intelligence (or AI) is how computers learn to do tasks that human brains can do. Examples include recognizing what you see, making plans and strategies, solving problems, etc.

Why AI for kids?

Artificial Intelligence is all around our kids today, from the digital assistants in our homes to product and movie recommendations, to auto-correct and facial recognition on phones, and more. Giving kids an introduction to AI helps them understand the world around them and the technologies that will be part of their future.

At what age should you start learning AI?

We have found that kids even as young as 4 years old can learn AI (see these books as a great way for a parent or teacher to show kids the AIs around them). Elementary school kids can even build their own AIs these days. Middle schoolers can build great science fair projects and also use AI to solve problems in their community. High school students can use AI for advanced science fairs and entrepreneurship projects and even write AI-based research papers. Our students have done all of these and more.

How can AI help children?

Learning AI can help children in many ways. AI is all around them, and learning AI helps them understand how everything from devices in their home, to websites that they interact with, really work. Also - AI is a critical technology that future jobs will require. Finally, AI is fun and accessible to kids, and is a powerful tool that they can use to build imaginative projects that increase love of STEM and learning.

How can you explain AI to a five-year-old?

We do this all the time! What we have learned is - kids understand AI as a computer learning to think and have a brain. They can also relate to AI when they understand that it is all around them (and many have already realized that digital assistants and their parent’s phones have smart computers inside them). Finally, fun books like these can show kids how AIs work and how they can think about new things they can do with AI.

What is Artificial Intelligence for beginners?

Anyone can learn AI with a simple approach where you learn concepts (what is AI, how does AI learn, what types of AI are there, etc.), context (how is AI used around us), capability (build an AI and try it out!), and creativity (think about new solutions that you can create with AI). You can find more details about this 4 C’s approach here.

Can I learn AI without coding?

Yes. Particularly, even young kids can learn AI without any coding. The AI experience makes them want to learn more coding. In our classes, nearly every student tells us they would like to learn more coding after they have seen some AI.

What is Artificial Intelligence with a simple example?

Say you visit a shopping website. When you look at an item, the website’s AI will gather up all that it knows about you and compare that to other customers. It will then recommend other items for you to look at, based on both what it knows about you and other customers that it thinks you may be similar to. For example - if you look at birthday candles, and other people like you that bought birthday candles, also bought paper plates and balloons, it will recommend that you look at paper plates and balloons.

How do you learn AI from scratch?

In our classes, students start by learning what AI is, and building a simple AI to detect their mood. In one hour, students learn what AI is, get an introduction to how AI learns, and build and teach their first AI - all from scratch, with no coding needed. They then proceed from there to learn more details and deeper concepts.

Excited? Want to learn AI or teach AI to your kids? If you are a parent, check out our classes and free resources! If you are a teacher, check out our educators page and more free resources!

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