The age-old picture of a teacher has undergone a technological makeover, after a robot schoolteacher developed by Japanese scientists conducted a class in a Tokyo school.
The female humanoid robot, called Saya, taught a science and technology lesson to a class of 10-year-old pupils at Kudan Elementary School in Tokyo.
With her neat brown hair, pink lipstick and skirt suit, Saya, created by scientists at Tokyo University of Science, has been designed to resemble a human as far as possible.
Saya uses a range of programmed movements from eyebrow arching to smiling, and her face can express six basic emotions in the classroom - surprise, fear, disgust, anger, happiness and sadness.
Professor Hiroshi Kobayashi, the mind behind Saya, said that the robot's main purpose was to highlight the joys of technology to children.
He also said that the teaching robot would benefit schools suffering from a shortage of human teachers.
"In the countryside and in some small schools, there are children who do not have the opportunity to come into contact with new technology and also there are few teachers out there that can teach these lessons," the Telegraph quoted Kobayashi as saying.
He added: "So we hope to be able to develop this robot so it can be remotely controlled to teach these classes."
Saya was originally developed to work as a receptionist in Japanese companies five years ago, but scientists recently reprogrammed it into to take over the role of a schoolteacher.