Educational Robotics in Down Syndrome: A Feasibility Study

S. Bargagna, E. Castro, F. Cecchi, G. Cioni, P. Dario, M. Dell’Omo, M. C. Di Lieto, E. Inguaggiato, A. Martinelli, C. Pecini, G. Sgandurra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Educational robotics (ER) uses robotic kits as a channel for education and collaborative learning in a play setting. Thanks to adaptability of robots, ER could facilitate inclusion of special-needs children, such as children with Down syndrome (DS), in learning programs. In a previous study, we provided evidence that ER could promote superior cognitive functions, such as executive functions, which are involved in problem solving, reasoning and planning in typically developing preschool children. In this preliminary study, we aimed to evaluate ER training feasibility, adapting methodology and previously experimented activities to promote executive functions in DS children. Eight DS children carried out 45-min weekly group sessions for 8 weeks in an ER laboratory (ER-Lab) using the Bee-Bot. Training setting was generally well-suited for this small sample of DS children. Due to sample heterogeneity, qualitative results of only two exemplificative children are presented and discussed. Results indicate that Bee-Bot is a very significant device for promoting interest, attention and interaction with adults and peers. Promotion of executive functions seemed to be possible in one child, who eagerly participated in ER-Lab activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalTechnology, Knowledge and Learning
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jun 16 2018


  • Bee-Bot
  • Down syndrome
  • Educational robotics
  • Executive functions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications


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