Spontaneous mime battle challenging a professional
Please find a Japanese version of this report here.
We have held our second summer camp this year on Aug. 20-24 at Shonan Fujisawa Campus (SFC), Keio University, in Fujisaway City, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan. The camp was named "OK Google, Do My Homework!" Term 2, where we again tried to automate children's homework such as math drills and book reports, through which we let children learn by experiments what can and cannot be automated in the context of human intellectual activities with today's technology.
24 elementary, junior high and high school students participated in this camp. They went through "unplugged machine learning" experience with matchsticks, tried some automated comic dialogues by programming Google Assistant with IFTTT (If This Then That), which they applied when fully automating math drills with voice commands, solved a puzzle competing with computers just to see that computers are better at those things (although this time children managed to get the highest possible points in the puzzle, so they tied with a computer program), and had fun with many team-building games, including watermelon bust, in which they also learned what it is like to conduct a scientific research (repetitively verifying and refining their hypotheses).
On the third day, they went to Yokohama, played "Yokohama Station Sci-Fi Mystery" game that reproduces the future world of "Yokohama Station Sci-Fi" where 98% of Japan's main island is covered with Yokohama Station (a comical extension of the fact that the station has been under construction for more than one hundred years). Most of them also visited the China Town in Yokohama, and enjoyed Chinese cuisine.
On the fourth day, we welcomed 6-dim+, a group of improvisational theatre artists, as usual for our summer camps. Again, they gave us wonderful opportunities, with many smiles and laughters, to think about and work with others.
On the last day, we let children think about setting homework for their own future. We set the due date to be August 2038, or 20 years from now. We let them imagine what changes will be made in the society, especially through automation. Then we encouraged them to include some numbers in their assignments, stating how much or how early they would like to achieve their goals. Then we suggsted that they change those numbers to be 10 times bigger, higher or earlier. Surely their minds started working really hard to think how they can achieve their boosted goals.
We have received many messages from their parents after they got home. One of the parents wrote that she was surprised to see her son being so positive and forward-looking after coming back from the camp. We are so glad. The camp was a wonderful experience for both children and us.
SUPPORT US ON GLOBALGIVING RECURRING MATCH CAMPAIGN on SEPT. 24-28
Please support us continue to support those wonderful children getting ready for the future, through GlobalGiving's recurring match campaign, where $20,000 incentive fund is used for matching 100% for the first month of new monthly donations (the donations need to continue at least for four month, so it is effectively like 25% match in total). The campaign starts on Monday, Sept. 24 and ends on Friday, Sept. 28, 2018. Please take this great opportunity to be part of us, and let's make difference together.
"Unplugged" machine learning with matchsticks
Watermelon Bust - the Japanese style
With 6-dim+, improvisational theatre artists
A little fireworks
Sharing their boosted homework for 2038