PROGRAM DESIGN CLARITY: We are hungry to know more about what exactly your model consists of. Please succinctly list a) what main activities are you doing with your beneficiaries, b) where you carry out the activities? c) how often? d) for how many hours? e) who delivers the services? and f) any other brief details
We are providing extracurricular workshops and events and offer a matchmaking service for peer-to-peer tutoring between students. Currently we are active direct at schools and out of schools. Starting this fall we will have about 1-2 workshops per week, spending more than 6 hours per week in direct contact with students. Our workshop services are delivered by trusted partners and the peer-to-peer tutoring itself is delivered by students (age 14 to 19) themselves. To support those processes we are offering an online platform including incentive systems motivating students to do "good things".
INSPIRATION: What do you consider the most important trends or evidence that inspire you to believe the world is ready to Re-imagine Learning? Please elaborate.
In the last years there was a lot of research done in the field of neuroscience and how it effects learning. Those findings offer profound scientific evidence to help understand where to go. Prominent ambassadors for an innovative education like Ken Robinson, André Stern, Gerald Hüther, Johannes Lindner and many more are getting a lot of attention. The amount of projects and initiatives also show that there are a lot of people caring about the future of our children. Also young people (millennials) show a lot of concern and motivation to change things. We are proud to be part of this movement!
LEARNING THROUGH PLAY: What does “learning through play” mean to you and why it is a must-have, instead of a nice to have?
Play means fun and joy, it has a strong positiv connotation. We know also from scientific findings that joy is one of the most important things when it comes to learning. Therefore it is a necissarity to implement a more playful way to reach our children. To make learning fun again, something to enjoy and play with. That's why we implemented gamification components right into the core of our online platform. To rise the level of talent, students collect bonus points for every interaction (tutoring, attending events,...) - reaching several different levels. With each level unlocking new offers.
SUSTAINABILITY: Please list a quick breakdown of your funding, indicating the percentage that comes from each source.
As it is right now, we invested own resources: 30%, were able to partner and get pro bono work from specialists: 20% and got an initial public grant that helped a lot: 50%. In the near future we plan to extend our funding (public/private grants, investments) and build our business model.
MODEL: How does your mission relate to your business model (i.e. Non-profit, for-profit or hybrid)?
We see ourself as hybrid. Building a business model around students/kids is a challenge, we will engage with a freemium/premium model. But this will just cover around 30%-40% of the costs in the future. For the rest we focus on the corporate world building WIN-WINs: employer branding, job/internship matchmaking and services/consulting, talent management for companies (how to become an attractive company for millennials and how to keep them).
FUNDING PRIORITIES: If your organization were given $20K in unrestricted funding today, how would you use it? Why?
We would use this money to further enhance our online platform and extend our activities at schools to attract and motivate more and more students to join our cause. We would most definitely invest in our core!
PARTNERSHIPS: Tell us about your partnerships that enhance your approach.
We are working together with Teach for Austria, local and country-wide students representations and selected schools through our partner school program. Additionally we are starting to work with extracurricular institutions like youth red cross, caritas and others.
COLLABORATIONS: Have you considered or initiated partnerships with any of the other Challenge Pacesetters? If so, please share.
We already gained a partner with knowledge rooms by joining the Science Center Network in Austria. Furthermore we had a very interesting talk with kiddify and had the chance to get to know some really interesting projects we would love to get to know better and even start a cooperation.
VISION: If you had unlimited funding, and you could fast forward 15 years to when your program has been able to achieve wild success - what will it have achieved?
We would have significantly increased social mobility in the school system, which means that the socio-economic background of a student is no longer the main factor in educational success. Also we would have positioned peer-to-peer aspects and concepts as a very important aspect of learning, which also means to increase play and bringing joy back to learning. A strong network and movement through society builds the future - together.
IMPACT - KEY METRICS: Please list the key data points that you would cite as evidence that you are able to achieve lasting learning outcomes. Please also share one data point for which you most hope to see better results over time
- # of students from privileged families tutoring students from less-priviliged families (strengthening social cohesion)
- # of students from parents with no or less education background graduating with a high-school degree (increasing social mobility)
- Reducing # of school drop-outs and young adults with no degree
- # of students that find a meaningful live working or creating their own ways by using their talents and full potential
APPROACHES: Given the complexity of play, it is not surprising that there have been numerous research attempts to categorize the different types and approaches! Please indicate which of the following your project focuses on.
Creating a Supportive Socio-Emotional Environment, Providing a Range of Opportunities (providing the equipment and materials needed for various types of play), Educational Structuring (developing playful projects within educational contexts).
AFFILIATION: Please specify if your organization has any existing affiliations with the LEGO Group.