Artificial Intelligence education for young children: Why, what, and how in curriculum design and implementation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

Abstract

Artificial intelligence (AI) education has posed fundamental challenges to early childhood education (ECE), including (1) why AI is necessary and appropriate for learning in the early years, (2) what is the subset of key AI ideas and concepts that can be learned by children, and (3) how to engage children in a meaningful experience that allows them to acquire these fundamental AI concepts. This report from the ECE field discusses the key considerations for developing an AI curriculum for young children. These key considerations altogether present an innovative pedagogical model for AI literacy education in early childhood. This model argues that AI literacy is an organic part of digital literacy for all citizens in an increasingly intelligent society. The core AI knowledge that can be explored with young children is: Using large amounts of data input, AI algorithms can be continuously trained to identify patterns, make predictions, and recommend actions, even though with limitations. Based on the theoretical notions of learning-by-making and pedagogy-as-relational, an embodied, culturally responsive approach should be used to enable young children's exploration with AI technologies. Finally, an exemplary curriculum named “AI for Kids” is introduced to demonstrate this pedagogical model and explain how educators can provide children culturally responsive inquiry opportunities to interact with and understand AI technologies. The synthesis of knowledge regarding “Why”, “What”, and “How” to do with AI education for young children informs a new way to engage children in STEM and understanding the digital world. Copyright © 2022 The Author. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100061
JournalComputers and Education: Artificial Intelligence
Volume3
Early online dateMar 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Citation

Yang, W. (2022). Artificial Intelligence education for young children: Why, what, and how in curriculum design and implementation. Computers and Education: Artificial Intelligence, 3. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1016/j.caeai.2022.100061

Keywords

  • Artificial intelligence education
  • Early childhood education
  • AI literacy
  • Digital equity
  • Pedagogical considerations

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