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AI-IN-A-BOX™ Lesson Plans - Middle School

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Lesson 1

ReadyAI May 20, 2019

ReadyAI - Middle School

Lesson 1: Introduction to AI & AI-IN-A-BOX™

Summary of Lesson

The ReadyAI program focuses on artificial intelligence (AI) in robotics. So, it is important that students understand the AI capabilities of the tools. It is also important that students know they can set up the system and recognize that they will create a project in the program.



Classroom Discussion

  • What is a robot; what’s not a robot?
  • AI v.s. Robotics?
  • How best to set up Cozmo
  • The expectations of this program


  1. Students will be able to

    • contrast AI from robots
    • facilitate the setting up of their AI unit independently from the teacher
    • experiment and select features that differentiate their AI unit from robots

Tools and Materials

Connecting to Prior Knowledge

  • Are toasters robots?

If you have any question about the lesson plan, please contact

Teaching Guide

Pre-program Survey (5 minutes)

Have students complete multiple choice pre-program survey (Handout 1.1)

Teacher resources:

Handout 1.1 – Pre-Program Survey See Teacher Resources 1.1 for a explanation of the survey.

Check for understanding:

Completion of the survey


Teacher begins class by asking, “What is a robot?”

Icebreakers and Introductions (5 minutes)

If whiteboard is available, teacher may add student ideas to a mindmap such as the following:

Teacher then uses the PowerPoint to show two contrasting videos to encourage student enthusiasm:

The teacher then shows the second video.

Teacher may differentiate between robots completing tasks and AI making decisions.

Teacher resources:

For an explanation as to the differences between AI and robots, see Teacher Resources 1.2

Check for understanding:

What did the AI in the car so that the factory robots producing cars could not do?


What makes Cozmo more than just a robot like what you saw in the first video?

Teacher Presentation (10 minutes)

. Teacher introduces Cozmo

  • Teacher identifies Cozmo’s parts
    • Treads
    • Lift
    • Camera and Head

2. Teacher then asks, “How do we wake Cozmo up?”

3. Teacher introduces AI-IN-A-BOX™ and how to connect the components

  • Teacher identifies AI-IN-A-BOX™ parts
    • Fire 7 Table
    • Controller
    • Cozmo’s charger
    • Quick Start Guide

Teacher resources:

For an explanation as to the differences between AI and robots, see Teacher Resources 1.2

Check for understanding:

What do you need to begin working with this AI unit?


Do you want to program Cozmo to do what you want?

Guided Practice (20 minutes)

Teacher distributes Handout 1.3 (listing sheet).

Teacher states, “You will have about 10 minutes to experiment with your AI units. At the beginning of this lesson, you saw a video that demonstrated how AI is different than robots. Using your handout, list functions that you find Cozmo can do, and select the top five actions you feel make it special and/or different from robots.

Teacher can ask students to share their top five ideas that differentiate AI units from other robots.

  • Suggestion: Teachers might want to avoid commenting too much on ideas that do not differentiate AI from robots as this may discourage future experimentation with the AI-IN-A-BOX™

Teacher resources:

Check for understanding:

What two AI functions did we see Cozmo demonstrate?


Let’s explore what Cozmo can do.

Student Production (15 minutes)

Teacher distributes AI-IN-A-BOX™ and Role Sheet (Handout 1.2)

  • Teacher circulates as students select roles and set up their AI-IN-A-BOX™. (dedicate approximately 7 minutes for the first time)
  • Teacher Suggestion: Allow students to experiment with setting up AI-IN-A-BOX™, including making mistakes in the process.

As necessary, teacher guides students in completing the process.

Teacher says, “Now that I have the components set up, what can I do with Cozmo?”

  • Teacher demonstrates Cozmo’s basic functions, programming and executing them
    • Teacher demonstrates facial recognition. (Teacher Resources 1.3)
      • Teacher may also demonstrate facial recognition on a student
      • Teacher also discusses functionality of facial recognition (i.e. box around face, items he does not recognize)
      • Note: When available, students can see what Cozmo sees more clearly if the laptop is set up to a projector.
      • Teacher asks students to follow along and try it on their own.
    • Teacher asks, “What else does Cozmo recognize?” (Teacher Resources 1.4)
      • Teacher holds items up in front of Cozmo. Teacher points out that a box surrounds each item he recognizes. Teacher demonstrates object recognition.
      • Teacher may ask students to present items items to Cozmo to see if he recognizes them.
      • Teacher asks students to follow along using their own AI-IN-A-BOX™ kits.

Teacher resources:

Handout 1.2

For walkthroughs on programming the functionality of Cozmo, reference Teacher Resources 1.3-1.4

Check for understanding:

What makes Cozmo unique? Student groups should share the ideas they discover through their experimentation with their AI units.


What are some of the possibilities you can do with these functions?

Closure (5 minutes)

Teacher presents video of competitions. (

  • Teacher asks students what they saw in the video.

Optional activities & materials:

If teacher chooses, he or she may use the quiz (Handout 1.4) to assess student learning.

Check for understanding:

Have students share their thoughts on the video.