If you have teenagers the chances are you’ve heard of Snapchat. But do you know about the new ‘My AI’ chatbot feature? 

It’s a friendly, chatty little bot and a good example of text-to-text artificial intelligence, but there are lots of different types and in fact, there are already hundreds, if not thousands of companies already using AI, or manufacturing AI products.

By 2025, as many as 97 million people are predicted to be working in the AI space - so imagine how many more will be working in AI by the time our children leave school. 

At Channing we foster intelligent, creative users of technology who are ready for what happens next, and one of the things that is definitely going to happen next is AI. So it’s our job to ensure that our students have the skills and tools needed to be the most effective users of AI at their chosen university or company. 

At a recent school assembly, I demonstrated how I asked ChatGPT to write me an assembly and all the ways things went wrong because I hadn’t given the bot the correct prompts to create the assembly I really wanted! 

Ham & High: Dan Grossman says Channing School is training students how to talk to AIDan Grossman says Channing School is training students how to talk to AI (Image: Channing School)

This is part of what we are training our students to do at Channing: to really think about how they talk to AI when they’re using it, because what you get out is simply a product of what you put in. The more specific you are, the better the quality of what it returns.

So we’re training our students how to PREP the machine - give a Prompt, identify a Role or voice for it, be Explicit with instructions and set Parameters - to get what you want and just as importantly how to EDIT the response - Evaluate what the AI has produced, Determine the accuracy by checking sources, Identify biases or misinformation, and Transform the content, because what ChatGPT and other AI gives us can’t always be trusted.  

AI can do the same thing as us; when it doesn’t know or have the correct answer, it sometimes makes up something imaginary - we call these hallucinations, and these hallucinations can be very problematic, although they can also be very useful for creativity. 

We are teaching our students to use AI to save time, but to be mindful in their usage and not to be reliant on it. To think about what they want the output to be before they enter their input. To be aware that AI can hallucinate and always check, verify and adjust the response.

And if AI saves them time, to use that time to do the things it can’t - be creative, show empathy, be kind, exercise, or simply laugh.

  • Dan Grossman is assistant head and director of Digital Learning and Technology at Channing School, Highgate.