ROBOT making is ever more popular with youngsters.

In a competition held in Shanghai yesterday, 30 competitors aged from 5 to 14 presented their self-made robots to an audience of about 600 students and parents.

They and the judges were amazed by what they saw — the robots ranged from a bionic dinosaur to an auto floor sweeper. There was one that could perform sit-ups, another that could lift a toilet lid.

“As China is undergoing reforms on scientific education, more and more schools and parents turn to robot making, which is seen as a way that can cultivate students’ comprehensive development, including exploratory and creative abilities,” said Zhang Lei, director of the competition organizer AIV Human Academy Robot School. “By this competition, we offer a platform for students to unleash their creativity.”

The AIV Human International Youth Robot was originally launched in Japan and moved to China for the first time this year. The AIV school has opened nearly 20 classrooms around China since it was established in 2015. It currently has about 400 students.

Pan Xinhe, a 9-year-old boy from Shanghai, said he had learned robot making for a year. He presented the sit-ups robot. “To make a robot by myself and let him do exercise with me is great,” he said.

Another Shanghai student Lu Hao, aged 8, made a crab just because he loved eating the delicacy.

His mother, surnamed Chen, said she fully supported his son’s new hobby.

“It improves his hands-on skills and inspires his creativity as they are always encouraged to break out of given instruction books and create their own favorite robots.”

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