Milo, a socially advanced robot who supports students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is the newest addition to the South Central Elementary school special education program in Canon-McMillan. Range Resources partnered with the Horizon Foundation of Canon-McMillan to purchase of two Milo robots for the school district. Supporting education and learning programs in the community is something Range takes pride in.
“I’m so thankful that we got to see the students meet Milo for the first time,” said Christina Kramer of Range. “Milo definitely piqued their interest immediately, we were able to see first-hand how Milo is going to support their learning and bring excitement to the classroom.”
This robot is manufactured by RoboKind, a learning company whose mission is to create cost-effective and inclusive education for all. Members of the faculty and staff at South Central were excited to see and interact with Milo for the first time after his unveiling on May 23rd.
“We are all very excited to see Milo in action with our students at South Central,” said Michelle Tomicek, Principal of South Central Elementary. “The initial introduction was amazingly positive and even those who were a little unsure about him initially warmed up and wanted to work with him when he first met the class.”
Milo is equipped with advanced features such as modeling expressions with its facial muscles, walking, and moving its arms. It is designed to help students with ASD by delivering lessons that help them tune in to emotions, express empathy, act more appropriately in social situations, self-motivate and generalize skills they have learned. It works in conjunction with therapists or special education teachers to deliver conversational, emotional and situational learning modules to ASD students.
“Milo is a fantastic tool for our students in the Autistic Support/Life Skills Program and we are excited to implement Milo’s curriculum within their speech and language therapy sessions,” said Sarah Figurel, a special education teacher at South Central Elementary who specializes in helping students with autism.
Milo offers Robots4Autism verbal lessons designed to teach social behaviors and emotional identification to learners ages 5-17.
Learners with ASD using the Robots4Autism curriculum show observable increases in engagement: eye contact, body language and friendliness. To date, students using Milo have seen an 87% engagement rate due to the consistency and repetition of the program.
“Our speech pathologist plans to learn all about Milo over the summer so that the children can use him when we begin again in the fall,” said Tomicek. “It was perfect timing for Milo to join us.”
To learn more about Milo and Robots4Autism click here.