Talk through some examples of information systems that use AI. Why is the AI-based system used? What are its benefits and what issues might arise? Introduce the concept that AI uses data (input), processes the data to make a prediction (process) and makes some sort of decision or action (output). Here are some relevant examples.
The word wall terms may include:
Machine learning (ML), Deep learning (DL), Supervised learning (SL), Classification, Biometrics, Facial recognition, Voice recognition, Speech recognition, Natural-language processing, Computer vision.
Discuss with students how employing a knowledge of known words, word origins and spelling generalisations can help them to spell technical terms.
Reinforce the spelling and understanding of each term by encouraging students to develop a definition that is easy to understand.
Some suggested applications include:
Smartphone assistants such as Siri or virtual assistants such as Google Home.
Image credits: (mobile phone) Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock.com; (Google Home assistant) Vantage_DS/Shutterstock.com
Ask your students these questions:
AI uses data to make some sort of decision and take some form of action (best guess). But the data it uses is often imprecise or incomplete. Human decision-making is similar. An AI system will always try to come up with a decision. If it is uncertain about anything, the system will inform the user of this, and try to get more information.
Students sort cards of information systems, some of which use AI and others that don’t. In pairs or small group, students discuss which ones they think use AI and sort them accordingly. For the categorisation, ask students to think about what data is being used and how it might be used by the application. Does it use the data in a useful, sensible way (smart)?
Download and print the cards Does it use AI? Cut the cards out and give them to your students. Students sort the cards into those that use AI, those that might use AI (unsure) and those that don’t. The ones that do use AI can be further grouped according to:
See below for the wording on the cards and a system for grouping these cards.
Question mark (unsure), cross (no AI), tick (yes, AI). Note: some examples might be more challenging than others and may depend on certain circumstances.
Discuss with students that an AI system requires an input – some form of data, which the AI processes in some way, makes a prediction based on that data, then provides an output.
Download and print the Input, process and output cards (PDF). Cut out the cards and give them to the students. Students sort and match these cards to the AI system cards used in the previous activity.
A matched example:
When all the cards have been matched, students share their groupings as a class. A teacher answer sheet is also available.
Ask students to play the Scratch game AI four of a kind. Students can reflect on the game and their correct and incorrect matches. They describe what they learned about input–process–output of an AI.
Ask students in groups to see the answer the series of questions about each of the applications shown at the top right area the Scratch screen. As they answer, they need to draw on their discussions and learnings developed through the previous card-sorting activities.
Note: The Scratch program does not provide answers or feedback to say that some assumptions are incorrect; it deals more with the thought process for students to engage in as they respond to the questions.