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Raising $15M to Build Kiddom Academy, a K-12 Operating System for Schools and Districts

Raising $15M to Build Kiddom Academy, a K-12 Operating System for Schools and Districts

Kiddom’s mission is to build technology that unlocks the potential of all teachers and learners. In fact, we believe it takes a village to raise a child, from parents to teachers to school and district administrators.

For centuries, schools and technology have struggled to find a balance, with technology typically attempting to dictate the relationship between teachers and students. We believe technology has failed to unburden teachers. We believe technology has failed to help schools become centers of proactive support. Teachers, school leaders, and district administrators continue to spend an inordinate amount of time piecing together data to take the pulse of teaching and learning in classrooms, schools, and districts.

Given these inefficiencies, the idea of “personalized learning” seems impossible to achieve. For Kiddom, “personalized learning” is not about applying technology to learning or adding screen time, it’s about designing and implementing technology that enables every student to learn through pedagogy optimized for them, at their own pace. Our aim is to give schools and districts the power to execute on their vision for teaching and personalized learning.

Today, we’re excited to announce two things: (1) Kiddom Academy for schools and districts and (2) a $15M Series B round of financing led by new strategic partners Owl Ventures to help us deploy Kiddom Academy. Owl Ventures is a venture capital fund that invests in the world’s leading education technology companies. Existing investors Khosla Ventures also participated in this round.

A blast from the past

When we started Kiddom over three years ago, we first focused on classrooms and the tools needed to enhance the classroom experience for teachers and students. We realized every classroom experience played a role in the larger ecosystem within the school, so we designed a set of collaborative tools to help school communities work together, share, and learn from each other more effectively.

By connecting classrooms to each other, we discovered a disconnect between classrooms and their respective administration bodies, and so we listened and worked closely with public school administrators to understand how to connect school systems from the top-down and bottom-up.

Academy for schools and districts

With this funding, we’re ready to release Academy, our K12 school operating system for schools and districts to take advantage of our technology, allowing leaders at the school or district level to identify and act on aggregate achievement trends, manage and disseminate curriculum and proprietary content, and efficiently integrate with other tools districts have come to rely on.

To facilitate Academy adoption, we’ll be using the funds we raised to aggressively recruit for technical roles, as well as implementation and success roles to ensure that each and every learning community subscribed to Kiddom Academy is bought-in, on-boarded, and equipped with a plan to take full advantage of the product.

A special thanks to teachers

Since our inception, we’ve experienced rapid growth across hundreds of thousands of classrooms, catalyzed by word-of-mouth referrals from great teachers. The Kiddom team is forever indebted to our teacher base. Thank you for being our biggest champions. Thank you for continuing to passionately serve students around the world.

What’s next?

As the Kiddom team works toward our mission, we’re excited to help more and more teachers, schools, and districts achieve the wonderful things that were previously thought impossible. While today marks an exciting milestone, we’re just getting started, baby. Thanks for being with us on this journey. 💜


By: Abbas Manjee, Chief Academic Officer

 

P.S. Kiddom’s core product for teacher and learners will always remain free.

Just Added: Teaching Resources for Literacy, Writing, and Grammar

Just Added: Teaching Resources for Literacy, Writing, and Grammar

Knock knock. Who’s there? To. To who? To whom!

Grammar puns aside, the literacy gap is serious business. In the United States alone, an estimated 8.7 million 4th-12th grade students struggle with the reading and writing tasks required of them in school.

At Kiddom, we believe students deserve strong literacy instruction in all of their classes. That’s why we’ve just added teaching resources from the fine folks at Quill.org and RocketLit to our library.

Quill.org provides free writing and grammar activities for elementary, middle, and high school students. Activities are great for small group instruction or station work. They’re excellent for homework assignments as well.

Activities are designed to be completed in ten minutes, so there’s a lot of flexibility in how you use them. For example, a sentence combining activity asks students to combine multiple ideas into a single sentence. They then receive instant feedback to help them improve their clarity and precision.

Instantly find Quill.org’s resources and build grammar and language skills for writing assignments

Do I need a Quill.org account?
No. Both teachers and students can access the activity directly via the content library preview or in the student assignment. When a student completes the activity they will see a results screen.

RocketLit offers non-fiction science and social studies articles, written in a voice students love. The articles are packed with analogies and available at multiple reading levels, covering topics for upper elementary and middle school. Science resources are aligned to NGSS and a growing number of state standards.

Articles for students include listening support for lower reading levels and annotation options. Assessments include multiple choice and free response style questions. Students complete an initial reading diagnostic and RocketLit adapts each assignment you choose to the student’s own reading level. This adjusts as student’s reading improves.

Find RocketLit’s articles in Kiddom to introduce science or social studies topics

Do I need a RocketLit account?
Yes. However, teachers get a free one month trial and all 5th grade reading level versions are free. Your students will also need accounts which you can set up when you create your teacher account.

Whether you’re an English Language Arts teacher, literacy specialist, or just a grammar nerd, you’re going to love these resources. To learn more about library of free teaching resources, visit our help desk.

https://upscri.be/17b283/


By: Abbas Manjee, Chief Academic Officer

P.S. This educator guide on literacy instruction provides a definition of content literacy, its impact, strategies for incorporating literacy skills, and tips for using Kiddom to help you integrate literacy and content seamlessly for yourself and your students.

Introducing Standard Mastery Reports

Introducing Standard Mastery Reports

How to dig deep into student performance on individual standards

As more and more teachers across the globe manage their classrooms using Kiddom, we’ve been thinking about how our reports can be even more actionable.

Simply put: we want teachers to be able to complete the instructional cycle for every student faster. And more efficiently. To do this, we believe teachers must need to be able to (1) investigate progress already made on specific standards/skills and (2) quickly act on it.

Well, we’re thrilled to announce this is now possible. Teachers, meet your new standard mastery reports and prepare to say, “Ooh la la…” 🤗

Standard Mastery Reports

To access your standard mastery reports, visit your reports page. Click on an individual standard from your reports to view a more detailed summary of your class performance on a specific standard.

Access these reports by clicking on an individual standard
  • At the very top, you’ll see a more detailed description of the standard you clicked on
  • Use the arrows next to this card to cycle between standards
  • The first reporting metric, Class Average, shows your overall class average for this standard
  • To the right, Class Average is distributed by mastery group
  • Use the graph below this to track the performance of your class on this standard over time
  • Sort the order of students by first name, last name, or by performance (e.g. sort by “lowest grade” to display students who need the most support first)

Individual Student Progress on Standards

From your standard mastery reports, scroll down and click on any student to open up individual student progress over time on specific standards.

Click on an individual student from your standard mastery reports to dig even deeper
  • At the top, you’ll see a graph you can use to track the performance of this student (on this particular standard) over time
  • Every assignment that is aligned to this standard (and assigned to that student) can be viewed here
  • Clicking on an assignment will open that particular student’s submission (where you’re welcome to add additional feedback and/or comments)

Find Resources Directly From Your Reports

Remember the, “we want teachers to be able to complete the instructional cycle for every student faster” thing we mentioned?

  • From your standard mastery reports, clicking “Find more assignments for this standard” will instantly open your resource library.
  • Use our library to find and assign free teaching resources (videos, quizzes, activities, and more) based on the intelligence you obtain from your standard mastery reports
  • Teaching resources here are meant to supplement/enrich instruction and offer teachers additional differentiation materials

What’s Next

We’re building Kiddom to be a place where teachers and learners can work together effortlessly, no matter where they are. We’re going to be focusing on one particular group of patient folks next: Android users. Stay tuned…

In the mean time, what are you waiting for? You have new reports to explore!


By: Abbas Manjee, Chief Academic Officer

P.S. Book a free 1:1 demo to learn how Kiddom can support your instructional practice. We’d love to say hello in person!

Introducing Collaborative Curriculum Development for Co-Teachers and Teacher Teams

Introducing Collaborative Curriculum Development for Co-Teachers and Teacher Teams

Curriculum development represents the journey teachers plan for their students to make meaningful connections. It’s labor-intensive and emotionally exhausting. Co-teachers share this responsibility. Teacher teams (across grades or content areas) also co-plan curriculum, with each team member then taking the “master curriculum” and making it their own.

At Kiddom, we recognize co-planning curriculum is challenging given the structural limitations of the traditional school day. Are co-teachers provided with common planning time? Does common planning time frequently get interrupted by other tasks, duties, or colleagues? Is common planning time scheduled during a time when teachers actually have the mental energy to write curriculum? We believe teachers must be able to collaboratively plan curriculum without the need to be in the same room at the same time.That’s why we’re proud to introduce our latest feature: shareable curriculum.

 

Collaborators with edit permissions may now co-plan curriculum with class owners

 

How to share and co-plan curriculum 📝

Starting today, when you create a new class in Kiddom, you’ll see a “master curriculum” (of the same name as your class) waiting for you in Planner. Your master curriculum is the curriculum that will automatically be shared with class collaborators, i.e. the team members you invite with viewing or editing permissions.

 

A shareable master curriculum is created for every new class a teacher creates on Kiddom

 

  • Once you’ve created a new class, invite collaborators using their email addresses.
  • If you’d like your collaborators to contribute to your curriculum, invite them with “can edit” permissions. If you’d like your collaborators to only see your curriculum, invite them with “can view” permissions. You can always change these permissions from your Class Settings.
  • When your collaborators accept your invitation, they can co-plan this curriculum with you from anywhere, at any time.

It’s that easy. Whether you’re a co-teacher, or a part of a teacher team, shareable curriculum can make co-planning more effective, more productive, and less dependent on the structure of the school day.

Tip: Sharing your class with “can view” permissions is a fantastic way to share your curriculum to solicit feedback from department leads, instructional coaches, assistant principals, and principals.

For Kiddom pilot program educators 💁🏻

Shared curriculum is currently only available for new classes created, unless of course you’re a Kiddom pilot school or pilot district teacher. If that’s the case, we’re happy to make sure the curriculum you’ve worked so hard on over the past few weeks is available to co-plan with members of your school community. Please reach out to us by emailing support@kiddom.co with your request and we’ll take care of it as soon as possible.

P.S. If this is your first time hearing about the Kiddom pilot program, that’s okay — we’ve been pretty quiet about it. Our pilot program is designed to help school and districts plan, assess, and analyze learning more effectively as communities.Although the school year is underway, we do have a limited number of spots still available. Click here to learn more about our free pilot program.

Sharing is Caring: Introducing Collaborative Teaching and Learning

Sharing is Caring: Introducing Collaborative Teaching and Learning

A sense of collaboration and community is important for the success of any school. Collaborative environments allow teachers to feel appreciated and guided in their role. It’s not rocket science: when teachers collaborate and communicate effectively, they design richer learning experiences for their students. Today, we’re proud to announce that collaboration tools are now available on Kiddom.

After months of researching, designing, engineering, and testing, all Kiddom users everywhere can now effectively collaborate with their colleagues. Hooray! 🎉

Here’s how collaboration works

  • Adding a collaborator is as simple as entering their email address.
  • As the class owner, you decide the type of access your collaborators gain, depending on each adult’s goals and roles (view vs. edit).
  • Share your classes with multiple adults — there is no limit to the number of collaborators each class can have.

Adding a collaborator that can view your class 👀

  • This means a collaborator may only see your class timeline and reports, without the ability to edit, add, or remove any assignments or students.
  • A collaborator that can view your class won’t be able to see or send comments to students on assignments.
  • This is best for administrators, instructional coaches, paraprofessionals, or support staff who may need access to student achievement data or assignments for their own focus areas.

Adding a collaborator that can edit your class ✍🏽

  • This means a collaborator gains modification privileges for assignments, grades, commenting, class settings, and rosters.
  • A collaborator that can edit your class has the ability to add additional collaborators.
  • This is best for co-teachers in special education, multi-age, or interdisciplinary classes who share the responsibility of creating and grading assignments.

Teamwork makes the dream work

The Kiddom team believes technology should enable teachers to share and learn best practices across their school communities. In fact, our pilot school communities intend to make big strides this year using Kiddom, all of which are using our collaboration features a little differently.

While we’re excited about collaboration and what it could mean for teachers and learners, we recognize there’s more work to be done. Over the next several weeks, we’re building co-planning feature sets for curriculum to accelerate our vision of building a collaborative education platform.

In the mean time, what are you waiting for? Start sharing and tweet us with your collaboration best practices using #SharingIsCaring.

https://upscri.be/17b283/


By: Abbas Manjee, Chief Academic Officer

Update 9/19: Sharing curriculum with co-teachers is now available!

Editor’s note: You can only share personally identifiable information with other teachers and administrators at your school. Please confirm that sharing your class and student achievement data with others in your school community is allowed under your school (or district) technology policy.

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