An online learning app that adapts to each student's needs and motivates them to be educated, and most importantly smart. Such is the product of ed-tech startup ForClassmates, which comes up with its own method of explaining school material in a human form created by the students themselves. They have already tried it out on over 35,000 students and have raised a 30 million dollars investment, for which they are offering investors a lucrative investment that also comes with a social cause.
Science in a different way
In addition to choosing an investment, scaling up the team and expanding abroad, the authors will focus on the five school subjects they believe students struggle with the most. "We will apply our method to maths, chemistry, physics, biology and geography, as they are among the most difficult subjects to explain, but at the same time, the content of these subjects differs only slightly across the board," says company CEO Lukáš Král, who is determined to take the project to an international level.
Ed-tech startup ForClassmates combines several elements in explaining science, such as interactive videos and graphs. "Classic educational videos on YouTube are 5 to 10 minutes long, you watch them and that's it. Whereas our interactive videos stop throughout, test the user to see if they are paying attention and if they understand the material," says Lukáš Král. They use gamification to motivate the student. "We try to convey science to the user in a more relaxed and playful way. We are not professors who cling to every word," comments Marek Liška, the author of the project.
Effectiveness of online education
Some research shows that students remember on average 25-60% more material online than in the classroom. This is mainly due to the fact that students can learn faster. At the same time, online learning requires 40-60% less learning time than traditional classroom learning. These results are confirmed by IBM, which found that participants learn five times more material in online courses using multimedia content than in traditional face-to-face classes.
"In our print textbooks, we were concerned that we didn't know how often students were learning with our materials. It was hard to know what really worked. That's the power of our online learning, because we will know in detail how to make the learning process more efficient and explain the material better to the students," says Marek Liška, adding "With us, students will not only be educated, meaning they will have graduated from school, but most importantly, they will be smart, meaning they will be able to think."
It is not humanly possible for a teacher to attend to each student individually according to his or her needs, whereas modern technology makes this possible. "Content-wise, we are technically able to replace the teacher and focus on students as individuals, but we don't want to remove the teacher from teaching. The teacher should be a mentor who helps students learn," adds Lukáš Král.
More information about the ForClassmates project and their journey can be found on the website https://www.forclassmates.io.
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About the company (boilerplate)
ForClassmates is an ed-tech startup that proposes an online learning system that is tailored to each user based on their strengths and weaknesses. It was born out of a student project that actually created a method to explain math in a simpler way that most students could understand. Over 5 years, the company has published 40 textbooks and workbooks in mathematics and chemistry for high schools and developed a basic MVP version of online learning based on the "human-to-student" method. In its history, it has sold more than 180,000 copies and over 35,000 Czech and Slovak students have gone through the method. In 2019, the ForClassmates project became the European Startup of the year by Total and was awarded by their home city for popularising high school maths in a completely unique approach, making them the youngest recipients of this award.