A venture pre-dominantly to change the face of education in rural areas is what led to the start of an Edu-tech company, Learning Matters in the first place. This enterprise was brought into shape by two school mates named Saraswati Ramamoorthy (Saras) and Gowri Mahesh along with G.Ramamoorthy in 2016.
Saras has an overall 18 years of experience in various child education programmes, managing digital contents and also teaching in the US. She has two MS degrees from Purdue University in Child Development and Special Education. After returning back to India she contacted her friend Gowri who was working in Chennai. Saras and Gowri have been friends since school and they had also worked with Moorthy at Pearson, a renowned publishing agency creating digital learning materials. He is an engineer turned entrepreneur who switched off his career in IT companies like Accenture, tutor vista and finally in Pearson before getting into this field.
Three of them had all the necessary skills to solve the key problem in India i.e. high-quality education at affordable rates and they felt there was so much that could be done with technology but the only problem was nobody was ready to take up the challenge. Moorthy pitched the idea of transforming education to Gowri and Saras which eventually resulted in the launch of Learning Matters. It mainly focusses on the enhancement of teachers and students in remote, rural and semi-urban schools by providing the tools they need to make learning more engaging and long lasting.
Tools Provided by Learning Matters
There are basically four pedagogical tools offered by Learning Matters which aims at holistic development of the children:
Tara: a cloud -based, NLP powered virtual voice teacher similar to amazon’s Alexa designed for educational purposes. The company chose ‘Communicative English’, a profitable sector as the first programme to be delivered by Tara in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Kerala. Recently, Tara also became accessible at Sri Kanchi Sankara Vidhyalaya Ganapathy Agraharam, Kumbakonam in Tamil Nadu. Next it is planning to enter Madurai and widen its horizon. Tara escapes students from the boring grammar lessons by associating it with examples from real-life situations. It is more context-based and content- driven. They have created Tara using Alexa’s hardware and speech recognition capabilities which has created a sheer disbelief among students. It teaches students how to effectively communicate in English with activities including reading, writing and speaking.
Star Teacher Programme: As the name suggests, its motive is at upskilling teachers. A customized teacher training programme where teachers are trained on challenging areas specifically. It uses 3-3-3 approach which means three face-to-face sessions, video conferencing and one-on-one call with a trainer in a year. This type of model creates meaningful learning for teachers which helps them in providing better assistance to their students. There are also WhatsApp groups and trainers send informational videos to follow up with teachers. They leave no technology unused. It also enables teachers to learn about child psychology because mostly all schools in rural areas, teachers are unaware about such topics which makes it important to educate them.
Kengine: Actually, Kengine was their first digital product, transforming teaching and learning experience. It contains videos, quizzes, text and audio summaries of various concepts. Teachers can use it to explain by putting up videos and students can use summaries to revise and it is cloud-based, so quick updates are possible. The quizzes allow for self-assessment.
Star teacher tool box: Specially created tool box for kindergarten section which enables students to think, explore and use their senses. It is designed to create student centric atmosphere in the classroom. It comes with a laminated board which restores the activity performed in the class and teachers can display what has been learnt even after the activity is over
Nothing could be attained without taking risks and chances in life. Apparently, it has shaped their career in a big way which not only benefited them but a large section of people towards evolvement
Founder & Consultant - School Serv
Vinod Kakumanu heads a team of school services professionals and is an independent commentator on Indian school education scenario. Vinod has assisted school promoters establish 35+ schools besides providing ancillary services to over 1000 schools across India. He envisions a future where quality education is made available to every child of the country. The focus he places on the quality of the deliverables and customer satisfaction has made him renowned in the field of K-12 school education.
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