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How Reon Iceland teaches children to create a chatbot game

Digital agency Reon teaches children how to program by using Flow.ai. The children created a chatbot that could play hangman with them.

The Challenge

Reon, as sponsor of the Pangea math competition in Iceland, tries to educate mathematically gifted children. Reon has given gifts such as raspberri-pi and then invited the winners of the competition to a day of learning at their office. Two years ago they helped children to connect sensors and motors to the raspberri pi and control them. This year Reon has decided to teach the children some kind of programming.

Teaching works best when it’s fun and interactive, same for programming. The main challenge was to come up with a concept that was easy to learn, fun and interactive.

...in the last half hour of the day they completed the bot and left home satisfied that they succeeded in making a bot they could play hangman with...

Chatbot Game

The Solution

Gunnar and Aníta, Reon employees, spent 2 days in the flow.ai platform making a hangman solution where you could do the following things:

  1. Get a random word and play the game.
  2. Create a game with a word of your choosing and get a random id.
  3. Play a game someone created via the random id.

Gunnar and Anita put up a simple flask backend to keep track of the word, save the games the users created and fetch created games.

After this set-up, some vital features were stripped from the flow.ai and comments were left as hints what to do.

Chatbot Hangman

The Result

Chatbot Hangman

The day finally came and the kids visited Reon. Reon took them through a crash course in simple programming and Flow.ai.

The kids were told what the game was supposed to do and Gunnar and Anita asked the kids what they thought was needed to finish it (the removed steps and action code). The next step was to fill in what was missing.

The case was organized, so that it was not too difficult for the children, and in the last half hour of the day they completed the bot and left home satisfied that they succeeded in making a bot they could play hangman with.

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