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The EdTech Startup Show

Gerard Dawson

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The EdTech Startup Show
The EdTech Startup Show

The EdTech Startup Show

Gerard Dawson

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About Us

The EdTech Startup Show, hosted by Gerard Dawson, brings you interviews with founders and entrepreneurs who are working to improve education for teachers, parents, and of course - students. On the show, you'll hear about the technology, business, and educational philosophy behind each guest's EdTech Startup. You'll also hear the stories from their journeys to where they are today.Whether you spend your time around startups, schools, or both, you'll find fresh ideas and a new perspective on the EdTech Startup Show.

Latest Episodes

Amir Nathoo - CEO of Outschool

On this episode of The EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Amir Nathoo (@amirnathoo), CEO & co-founder of Outschool. Amir leads growth, trust and safety at Outschool. He previously worked at Square founding the Square Payroll product. Before that he was CEO and co-founder of Trigger.io, having started his career at IBM. Amir holds an MEng from Cambridge. Outschool is a marketplace of live online classes for kids. The company's mission is to inspire kids to love learning. They provide small group classes that meet over live video chat where learners are connected with teachers and classmates who share their interests. These classes are offered through Outschool's marketplace and conducted on their remote learning platform. Amir encourages interested teachers to explore the flexibility, autonomy, and income-earning opportunities available to teachers on Outschool. Learn about teaching on Outschool here. Highlights from the episode The class Amir would like to teach on Outschool How playing computer games for hours led to Amir's career in technology In the very early days, Amir taught an Outschool class on startups and business. He tells this story The incredible power of learning from teachers who love their subject area "Math art"?? - This is just one example of a unique and inspirational class available on Outschool The relationship between inspired students, passionate teachers, and supportive parents How a retired economics professor helped guide a young Amir on his journey to become a programmer San Francisco, 2015: the story of Amir, Mikhail, & Nick coming together to start Outschool HS physics teacher --> first engineer at Airbnb --> product manager at Clever --> founder of Outschool: Amir explains the journey of his co-founder Nick Grandy Version 1.0 of Outschool was in-person classes: Amir explains The critical difference between live online video and other online education modalities An inspiring story of how Megan Hardy became (the world's first?) full-time teacher of Dungeons & Dragons classes Another incredible story: Kirsten Bowman, a UN human rights lawyer, who teaches social studies classes to young learners on Outschool Pet Reptile Social Hour. You'll just have to listen to learn more. Why Amir wonders if his son might want to pursue e-sports instead of programming when 20 years from now The inherent tension between core, standardized knowledge bases with career and interest-specific skills The new role of coding and technological literacy as a core subject for all learners Amir and I will need to talk again in 5-10 years to evaluate the predictions made during our conversation A teacher for every learner's interest: Amir's vision for the future of Outschool Amir's invitation to teachers who are waiting to teach the subjects they've always wanted to teach Objective, secular, age-appropriate: the fair and open content guidelines for classes on Outschool If you liked this episode, then leave a review on iTunes, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

46 MINJUL 12
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Amir Nathoo - CEO of Outschool

PR for EdTech with Jacob Hanson of PR With Panache

When it comes to PR for EdTech, this episode is a masterclass. My guest is Jacob Hanson, CEO of PR with Panache. Background on Jacob: A graduate of Fort Lewis College, Jacob graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Modern Language. Spending subsequent years of his career dedicated to sales growth, marketing, and brand awareness, Jacob brings to PR with Panache! a fierce passion for education and extensive experience in moving high-quality companies and their brands to the forefront of the education marketplace. A skilled communicator with a zest for life, he has the wherewithal to see the big picture, connecting the dots between sales, marketing, and public relations to create dynamic communication and integrated marketing plans to effectively tell your story. Jacob serves on the Board of Directors for a MN-based STEM non-profit,High Tech Kids, whose mission is to deliverfun, hands-on science, engineering, and technology programs and events that inspire Minnesota kids in their formative years. A native of Minnesota with a strong affinity for the Rocky Mountains, Jacob enjoys spending time with his two wonderful children, Sawyer and Bexley, making fresh tracks and hiking with his hound dog, Dan. From the PR with Panache website: "PR with Panache! develops and shares stories that captivate the K-12 education market and influence high-level conversations in the media. Our team includes expert journalists, editors, administrators, and former educators who have one thing in common: We are all storytellers at heart. We craft customized campaigns that stay true to your vision while leveraging the dynamic voice of your customers and establishing you as a thought leader in education.Together we craft stories that inspire decision-makersin K-12 education not just to take notice but to act. As your storytelling team, we earn you the attention and acclaim of your audience. And we do it all with passion and energy that’s unparalleled in the education industry." Highlights from the show The history of Jacob's agency, PR with Panache, and how his mother started the company How Jacob went from a Spanish major to CEO of his company Why Jacob turned down a job at a startup in order to join his family business The origin story of the mother-son tag team at Jacob's company A complete description of PR with Panache, a boutique agency doing PR for EdTech and PreK-12 education companies An overview of the type of campaigns - both inbound marketing and brand awareness - Jacob runs for his clients What's it like to work in a family business? Jacob explains at 7:00 Insights and tips on running a 100% virtual team The different business relationship Jacob had with his mother and father "Sorry to say this, but there is no silver bullet in education" - Jacob explains why there are no short cuts when doing PR for EdTech at 12:30 The first step in crafting your message as an EdTech startup "It's not about your product, it's about the educators" Jacob breaks down why education is a relationship-based industry (advice especially relevant for newer companies) It's not "sell and tell," it's "earn." Jacob explains this marketing and sales strategy. There's no breaking news in education - Jacob explains how education entrepreneurs should work with this Why EdTech startups need to plan five-years ahead (17:15) Jacob gives a step-by-step breakdown of how EdTech startups can do their own PR The "Too big too soon" problem EdTech startups fall into (and the power of local media) 2 specific tips on pitching to media outlets at 23:00 The incredible story of an 8-year-old who could never speak who comes home and says, "Hey Mom." (PR With Panache's work with RoboKind) Why focusing on impact and results is the secret to great storytelling for startups "The Common Core Aligned Effect" - the danger of slapping buzzwords on your education tool or product Jacob's advice on how EdTech startups can maximize the return on investment on attending live events

46 MINJUN 19
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PR for EdTech with Jacob Hanson of PR With Panache

Brad Schiller - CEO of Prompt

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Brad Schiller is co-founder and the CEO of Prompt, a company focusing on making people better writers through a combination of software and providing writing tutoring at scale. Brad is a writer, having written extensively on such topics as college admissions essays and case interview preparation for aspiring consultants. Previously, Brad founded Beacon Ventures, a consultancy to PE firms, PE portfolio companies, and the Fortune 500. Before that, Brad was the first employee (2nd person) at Airware, a Y Combinator and VC-backed drone start-up ($85M funding), and he spent nearly 5 years at McKinsey after graduating from MIT. Prompt manages and supports the college application writing process. Students receive a Personalized Assignment List over everything they need to do to complete applications for their school list based on Prompt's database of every requirement for every school (e.g., essay prompts). Students use Prompt's Content Strategy and Essay Outlining tools to develop the content and structure for their applications – effectively eliminating bad first drafts. Organizations use Prompt's essay review tools and workflows to review essays or access personalized feedback on essays from Prompt's global network of writing specialists. Prompt is used by high schools, college access organizations, and hundreds of independent admissions consultants. Brad encourages interesting people to reach out to him at brad@prompt.com. Highlights from the conversation: Brad's personal story of receiving valuable writing feedback at his first job The crazy story of DoesMyEssaySuck.com (yes, that was a real website!) Why content and structure are two focal points for the feedback given by Prompt instructors The tools Prompt has created to help students get started with college essays Take a guess: what % of student essays are submitted to Prompt within two weeks of the college app deadline? Hear the answer at 16:30 Instructional and actionable: the two keywords for feedback on student writing The surprisingly quick rate that Brad's company helps students improve their essays No, AI isn't coming to steal teachers' jobs - Brad explains why at 22:50 Brad's bet on writing help as a massive opportunity in EdTech Business development tip: The clever business partnership Prompt has with college admissions consultants Brad's strategy on growing out of the revenue Prompt creates and understanding market signals The decision-making process the Prompt team went through to plan its growth moves (35:12) An honest look into the decision not to raise venture capital funding - Brad explains it What's up next for Prompt? If you liked this episode, then leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

49 MINJUN 11
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Brad Schiller - CEO of Prompt

Ashley Lamb-Sinclair: CEO of Curio Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Ashley Lamb-Sinclair is the Founder & CEO of Curio Learning, a platform to help teachers discover new ideas, curate them visually, and collaborate with other educators to become more creative and more empowered in their teaching craft. Curio Learning has received numerous awards including acceptance into the LearnLaunch Accelerator in Boston, the Navitas Ventures Prize in the Milken Penn Business Plan Competition, and most recently, the grand prize in the Uber Girlboss Pitch Competition. In addition to building Curio, Ashley was honored as the 2016 Kentucky Teacher of the Year. In that role, she served as Teacher in Residence for the Kentucky Department of Education and co-founded multiple statewide projects including KYEdPolicy.org, Policy Together, and The Courier Journal Classroom Connections. As Kentucky Teacher of the Year, she created innovative lesson plans with the Spotify for Education Advisory Board and received an EF Education First scholarship to study the education system in Finland with other educators. Prior to being honored as Kentucky Teacher of the Year, she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to Thailand and Vietnam and an English Speaking Union Scholarship to study creative writing at Exeter College at the University of Oxford. She is a contributing writer to the Atlanticand the Washington Post, among other publications, and taught secondary English and creative writing as a National Board Certified Teacher for thirteen years. She also founded an educator accelerator called School Startup, integrating entrepreneurship and human-centered design principles into teaching craft. She also provided expertise as a curriculum and educator outreach consultant to TrueSchool Studio based in New Orleans. Highlights include: Ashley (a 14-year teacher) walks us through the process many teachers go through when planning, collecting and creating lessons "The Rebel Teacher" - Who are they? What are they rebelling against? The social impact of hundreds of thousands of teachers sharing and discussing resources in a network like Curio Ashley explains the challenges of going from the classroom to the startup world "There's a divide between what happens in schools and out of schools." Ashley has written for The Atlantic - how did her editors contradict the sacred beliefs of English teachers? The mindset, timing, and ebb and flow of teachers, which has a big impact on user growth Believe it or not, Ashley says, "I was a Luddite." Listen to her explain. What are the career paths available to teachers and how can EdTech startups expand opportunities? The suspicion teachers show towards Ashley because she's started a company (this is very real) Ashley's advice, which may surprise you, for teachers who want to carve out an entrepreneurial path If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson TheEdTechShop.com

41 MINMAY 1
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Ashley Lamb-Sinclair: CEO of Curio Learning

Jordan Levy - Executive Director of CapSource

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Jordanis a Forbes 30 Under 30 and serial education technology entrepreneur. He has started two EdTech companies that help higher-ed programs bridge the skills gap for their students through experientiallearning. His method is to integrate real companies into the education process through hands-on collaborations that expose learners tonew circumstances with real stakeholders, challenges, and outcomes. His company CapSource is a fast-growing marketplace where educators and students can find companies interested in collaboratingthrough specially designed project-based learning engagements. So far, CapSource’s has leveraged 100+ different host companypartners to provide in-depth learning experiencesto 1,500+ students at 25 different schools and universities around the glo...

36 MINAPR 26
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Jordan Levy - Executive Director of CapSource

Dr. Carolyn Brown - President of Foundations in Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Research scientist Dr. Carolyn Brown has spent more than 30 years studying the needs of struggling readers and has received support from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Education and the state of Iowa to develop and test strategies that work. She and Dr. Jerry Zimmerman are the co-founders ofFoundations in Learning,a provider of research-based tools designed to assess struggling readers, address their foundational skill deficits and empower them to achieve significant gains in reading fluency and comprehension. Theyrecently contributed an op-ed to SmartBrief entitled10 Ways to Combat Middle School Reading Failureand another one to Hechinger Report on the need toconnect cognitive science to reading instruction. Developed in close collaboration with school districts, Foundations in Learning’s premier productAccess Codeis an innovative blended assessment and intervention system designed for students who persistently struggle with reading comprehension and fluency. UsingAccessCode, teachers can diagnose struggling readers and help them develop automatic word recognition — the critical bridge between phonics and fluency. Episode highlights: The damaging assumptions our education system makes when teaching children to read Just how critical it is to get kids reading well by the third grade (Carolyn shares some shocking statistics) A deep dive into the “varied practice model,” a research-based approach to literacy instruction Why Carolyn decided to use the lessons she learned in research to start a company Carolyn quickly learned the difference between a research environment and the classroom – hear what she said about this The reason EdTech startups need education experienceandbusiness operators The “heavy lifting” technology can do for reading teachers (and why you can never take the teacher out of the room) Advice to teachers and researchers who want to start an education business venture Learn more about Carolyn's work here: https://www.foundations-learning.com/ If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson TheEdTechShop.com

37 MINAPR 18
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Dr. Carolyn Brown - President of Foundations in Learning

Clarence Tan - Co-founder of Boddle Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Clarence Tan understands the connection between fun and learning Clarence Tan is an EdTech entrepreneur who has been working in games and the e-learning industry for over 8 years. He grew up in China, Singapore, and the US, and has experienced private, public and homeschool education. He started his entrepreneurial journey back in 2011. While he was still a junior in college he worked with friends he met online to develop educational games and learning platforms for government municipalities in Colombia and South America. Additionally, he partnered with companies in North America to launch educational entertainment projects. Since then, he has been championing the positive impact of student engagement using educational gamification through his ventures and speaking engagements. He has the heart and mind of a creative and has always been fascinated by games and creative projects. Clarence is currently the Co-Founder & CEO atBoddle Learning, an EdTech company founded in 2018. Boddle Learning offers a game-based learning platform that delivers e-learning materials to K-8 students in game-format to engage and motivate them in academics. The game app also comes with a management platform that generates analytics & reports for teachers and parents to stay in the loop. Boddle is designed to use gamification to help elementary and middle schools benefit from higher student engagement and automated reporting. Episode highlights - Gamification in education Why games can help teachers assess students better (this is something I had not considered before) Just add points is not gamification - Clarence explains a better definition The role of "unnecessary steps" in making learning fun Clarence addresses the argument that game play doesn't lead to learning The moment in South America that set Clarence on a path to building educational games Make this mistake Clarence made in the past and your education venture will really struggle. Clarence explains what to do instead. Piloting your EdTech product in schools - Clarence has done this and he shares his lessons learned Clarence gives advice to education entrepreneurs just starting out Before we go...Clarence explains what Boddle means Important links Sign up for the Boddle Learning pilot here: https://www.boddlelearning.com/ Say hello to Clarence on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/clarencetanjl If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

26 MINAPR 10
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Clarence Tan - Co-founder of Boddle Learning

Ami Shah - Co-Founder & CEO of Peekapak

This episode of the podcast is brought to you by The EdTech Shop - Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix. Click here to enroll for free. ### On this episode of the podcast, I talk to Ami Shah.Ami is the CEO and Co-founder of Peekapak, an award-winning social-emotional learning platform that engages elementary students to learn skills like self-regulation, empathy, and teamwork and reaches over 200 000 educators and students. Using stories, evidence-based lessons, and game-based learning, Peekapak empowers educators to be proactive in helping curb future mental health issues. Ami has earned an MBA from INSEAD and has previously taught in K-4 classrooms and advised and volunteered at education-related non-profit organizations. After gaining marketing experience through roles at Procter & Gamble and driven by her passion to improve youth education, Ami made the jump to entrepreneurship and has since been featured on Toronto Life, Flare, TechVibes, CBC, and numerous other outlets. Ami and I take a deep dive into SEL & serving elementary schools. Highlights include: The mission for Peekapak Ami's TED talk - She talks about our real answers to the question "how are you?" I'm curious about how a tech platform can help build social-emotional skills. Ami explains how that's possible. The dynamic relationship between early childhood education and parental involvement when it comes to Peekapak and SEL Serving elementary schools, teachers, and students is special in EdTech - Ami tells us why. Ami has interviewed over 300 teachers. Here's what she's learned. The importance of modeling as the leader of a company. How teachers can get started with SEL (Ami recommends casel.org) Say hello to Ami on Twitter: (@amishahdotca) Try Peekapak: www.peekapak.com If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

23 MINMAR 28
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Ami Shah - Co-Founder & CEO of Peekapak

Chris Castiglione - co-founder of One Month

Today on the EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Chris Castiglione (@castig). Chris is the Dean of One Month, an adjunct professor at the business school at Columbia University, and the host of his own podcast, On Books. (Note: One reason to start your own company - you get to give yourself an awesome title like "Dean.") In simple terms, Chris is a twenty-first-century teacher. His company One Month is an online education platform teaching people technical skills like coding and project management through real-world projects in just 30 days. The company started when Chris and his co-founder Mattan began traveling around the world teaching people how to code. The problem was clear: they couldn't clone themselves, and there was a flood of students who wanted to learn from them. One Month was born. I first connected with Chris and his company in 2013. Having just sparked my own curiosity in learning to code, I dove into the course, which was one of the first Chris and Mattan offered on their site. I eventually wrote about the experience for Edutopia here. In just a few short lessons, probably under an hour, I had downloaded a new programming language onto my computer and created the basics of an app that was a clone of Pinterest. Just contrast that with the way a typical in-person course syllabus plays out. How long until students work on an exciting project? Days? Weeks? These satisfying wins, or "gold coin moments" as Chris calls them, are at the heart of great learning experiences, both online and in-person. Chris knows a thing or two about the power of lifelong learning. We discuss: - How in-person teaching experience led Chris to start his online education company - "Gold Coin Moments" and the difference between an online course and college class - The History of the Internet, an inspiring new writing project - Why knowing the mindset folks bring to your educational content is a difference maker - Motivating students in online education - And more Fun links from this episode: As a listener to the Edtech Startup Show, you can get 10% off coding courses at One Month. The History of The Internet: https://hackernoon.com/the-history-of-the-internet-cdb844ff460c Syllabus for Digital Literacy for Decision Makers: https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/courses/mba/2018/fall/b8125-001 On Books podcast: https://castig.org/on-books/ And more Like the show? Please give it a rating on iTunes and don’t forget to subscribe. You can also give me your feedback by tweeting@GerardDawson3with the hashtag #EdTechStartupShow – thanks for listening!

24 MINMAR 6
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Chris Castiglione - co-founder of One Month

Matthew Gross - Founder of NewsELA

Today on the EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Matthew Gross (@matthew_gross), founder and CEO of NewsELA. NewsELA is an instructional content platform that solves "the problem ofreading engagement holistically for students, teachers, and principals." Many teachers will recognize the company for its powerful text-levelingfeatures, though they do much more. Matt showed a sincere dedication to improving education during this conversation, and he shares stories and observations that both educators and EdTech industry folks will find fascinating. Highlight include: How poetry taught Matt he shouldn't skip his college classes. "I really don't think about technology at all." Matt explains this surprising statement. Why Matt and NewsELA reject "sit and get" EdTech. Expectations Matt has for Newsela and his peers in EdTech. The #1 pain point Matt hears from school and district administrators (and how he addresses it). The amazing transformation Matt has noticed in schools since 2012. "Good new...

21 MINFEB 26
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Matthew Gross - Founder of NewsELA

Latest Episodes

Amir Nathoo - CEO of Outschool

On this episode of The EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Amir Nathoo (@amirnathoo), CEO & co-founder of Outschool. Amir leads growth, trust and safety at Outschool. He previously worked at Square founding the Square Payroll product. Before that he was CEO and co-founder of Trigger.io, having started his career at IBM. Amir holds an MEng from Cambridge. Outschool is a marketplace of live online classes for kids. The company's mission is to inspire kids to love learning. They provide small group classes that meet over live video chat where learners are connected with teachers and classmates who share their interests. These classes are offered through Outschool's marketplace and conducted on their remote learning platform. Amir encourages interested teachers to explore the flexibility, autonomy, and income-earning opportunities available to teachers on Outschool. Learn about teaching on Outschool here. Highlights from the episode The class Amir would like to teach on Outschool How playing computer games for hours led to Amir's career in technology In the very early days, Amir taught an Outschool class on startups and business. He tells this story The incredible power of learning from teachers who love their subject area "Math art"?? - This is just one example of a unique and inspirational class available on Outschool The relationship between inspired students, passionate teachers, and supportive parents How a retired economics professor helped guide a young Amir on his journey to become a programmer San Francisco, 2015: the story of Amir, Mikhail, & Nick coming together to start Outschool HS physics teacher --> first engineer at Airbnb --> product manager at Clever --> founder of Outschool: Amir explains the journey of his co-founder Nick Grandy Version 1.0 of Outschool was in-person classes: Amir explains The critical difference between live online video and other online education modalities An inspiring story of how Megan Hardy became (the world's first?) full-time teacher of Dungeons & Dragons classes Another incredible story: Kirsten Bowman, a UN human rights lawyer, who teaches social studies classes to young learners on Outschool Pet Reptile Social Hour. You'll just have to listen to learn more. Why Amir wonders if his son might want to pursue e-sports instead of programming when 20 years from now The inherent tension between core, standardized knowledge bases with career and interest-specific skills The new role of coding and technological literacy as a core subject for all learners Amir and I will need to talk again in 5-10 years to evaluate the predictions made during our conversation A teacher for every learner's interest: Amir's vision for the future of Outschool Amir's invitation to teachers who are waiting to teach the subjects they've always wanted to teach Objective, secular, age-appropriate: the fair and open content guidelines for classes on Outschool If you liked this episode, then leave a review on iTunes, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

46 MINJUL 12
Comments
Amir Nathoo - CEO of Outschool

PR for EdTech with Jacob Hanson of PR With Panache

When it comes to PR for EdTech, this episode is a masterclass. My guest is Jacob Hanson, CEO of PR with Panache. Background on Jacob: A graduate of Fort Lewis College, Jacob graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Modern Language. Spending subsequent years of his career dedicated to sales growth, marketing, and brand awareness, Jacob brings to PR with Panache! a fierce passion for education and extensive experience in moving high-quality companies and their brands to the forefront of the education marketplace. A skilled communicator with a zest for life, he has the wherewithal to see the big picture, connecting the dots between sales, marketing, and public relations to create dynamic communication and integrated marketing plans to effectively tell your story. Jacob serves on the Board of Directors for a MN-based STEM non-profit,High Tech Kids, whose mission is to deliverfun, hands-on science, engineering, and technology programs and events that inspire Minnesota kids in their formative years. A native of Minnesota with a strong affinity for the Rocky Mountains, Jacob enjoys spending time with his two wonderful children, Sawyer and Bexley, making fresh tracks and hiking with his hound dog, Dan. From the PR with Panache website: "PR with Panache! develops and shares stories that captivate the K-12 education market and influence high-level conversations in the media. Our team includes expert journalists, editors, administrators, and former educators who have one thing in common: We are all storytellers at heart. We craft customized campaigns that stay true to your vision while leveraging the dynamic voice of your customers and establishing you as a thought leader in education.Together we craft stories that inspire decision-makersin K-12 education not just to take notice but to act. As your storytelling team, we earn you the attention and acclaim of your audience. And we do it all with passion and energy that’s unparalleled in the education industry." Highlights from the show The history of Jacob's agency, PR with Panache, and how his mother started the company How Jacob went from a Spanish major to CEO of his company Why Jacob turned down a job at a startup in order to join his family business The origin story of the mother-son tag team at Jacob's company A complete description of PR with Panache, a boutique agency doing PR for EdTech and PreK-12 education companies An overview of the type of campaigns - both inbound marketing and brand awareness - Jacob runs for his clients What's it like to work in a family business? Jacob explains at 7:00 Insights and tips on running a 100% virtual team The different business relationship Jacob had with his mother and father "Sorry to say this, but there is no silver bullet in education" - Jacob explains why there are no short cuts when doing PR for EdTech at 12:30 The first step in crafting your message as an EdTech startup "It's not about your product, it's about the educators" Jacob breaks down why education is a relationship-based industry (advice especially relevant for newer companies) It's not "sell and tell," it's "earn." Jacob explains this marketing and sales strategy. There's no breaking news in education - Jacob explains how education entrepreneurs should work with this Why EdTech startups need to plan five-years ahead (17:15) Jacob gives a step-by-step breakdown of how EdTech startups can do their own PR The "Too big too soon" problem EdTech startups fall into (and the power of local media) 2 specific tips on pitching to media outlets at 23:00 The incredible story of an 8-year-old who could never speak who comes home and says, "Hey Mom." (PR With Panache's work with RoboKind) Why focusing on impact and results is the secret to great storytelling for startups "The Common Core Aligned Effect" - the danger of slapping buzzwords on your education tool or product Jacob's advice on how EdTech startups can maximize the return on investment on attending live events

46 MINJUN 19
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PR for EdTech with Jacob Hanson of PR With Panache

Brad Schiller - CEO of Prompt

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Brad Schiller is co-founder and the CEO of Prompt, a company focusing on making people better writers through a combination of software and providing writing tutoring at scale. Brad is a writer, having written extensively on such topics as college admissions essays and case interview preparation for aspiring consultants. Previously, Brad founded Beacon Ventures, a consultancy to PE firms, PE portfolio companies, and the Fortune 500. Before that, Brad was the first employee (2nd person) at Airware, a Y Combinator and VC-backed drone start-up ($85M funding), and he spent nearly 5 years at McKinsey after graduating from MIT. Prompt manages and supports the college application writing process. Students receive a Personalized Assignment List over everything they need to do to complete applications for their school list based on Prompt's database of every requirement for every school (e.g., essay prompts). Students use Prompt's Content Strategy and Essay Outlining tools to develop the content and structure for their applications – effectively eliminating bad first drafts. Organizations use Prompt's essay review tools and workflows to review essays or access personalized feedback on essays from Prompt's global network of writing specialists. Prompt is used by high schools, college access organizations, and hundreds of independent admissions consultants. Brad encourages interesting people to reach out to him at brad@prompt.com. Highlights from the conversation: Brad's personal story of receiving valuable writing feedback at his first job The crazy story of DoesMyEssaySuck.com (yes, that was a real website!) Why content and structure are two focal points for the feedback given by Prompt instructors The tools Prompt has created to help students get started with college essays Take a guess: what % of student essays are submitted to Prompt within two weeks of the college app deadline? Hear the answer at 16:30 Instructional and actionable: the two keywords for feedback on student writing The surprisingly quick rate that Brad's company helps students improve their essays No, AI isn't coming to steal teachers' jobs - Brad explains why at 22:50 Brad's bet on writing help as a massive opportunity in EdTech Business development tip: The clever business partnership Prompt has with college admissions consultants Brad's strategy on growing out of the revenue Prompt creates and understanding market signals The decision-making process the Prompt team went through to plan its growth moves (35:12) An honest look into the decision not to raise venture capital funding - Brad explains it What's up next for Prompt? If you liked this episode, then leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

49 MINJUN 11
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Brad Schiller - CEO of Prompt

Ashley Lamb-Sinclair: CEO of Curio Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Ashley Lamb-Sinclair is the Founder & CEO of Curio Learning, a platform to help teachers discover new ideas, curate them visually, and collaborate with other educators to become more creative and more empowered in their teaching craft. Curio Learning has received numerous awards including acceptance into the LearnLaunch Accelerator in Boston, the Navitas Ventures Prize in the Milken Penn Business Plan Competition, and most recently, the grand prize in the Uber Girlboss Pitch Competition. In addition to building Curio, Ashley was honored as the 2016 Kentucky Teacher of the Year. In that role, she served as Teacher in Residence for the Kentucky Department of Education and co-founded multiple statewide projects including KYEdPolicy.org, Policy Together, and The Courier Journal Classroom Connections. As Kentucky Teacher of the Year, she created innovative lesson plans with the Spotify for Education Advisory Board and received an EF Education First scholarship to study the education system in Finland with other educators. Prior to being honored as Kentucky Teacher of the Year, she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to Thailand and Vietnam and an English Speaking Union Scholarship to study creative writing at Exeter College at the University of Oxford. She is a contributing writer to the Atlanticand the Washington Post, among other publications, and taught secondary English and creative writing as a National Board Certified Teacher for thirteen years. She also founded an educator accelerator called School Startup, integrating entrepreneurship and human-centered design principles into teaching craft. She also provided expertise as a curriculum and educator outreach consultant to TrueSchool Studio based in New Orleans. Highlights include: Ashley (a 14-year teacher) walks us through the process many teachers go through when planning, collecting and creating lessons "The Rebel Teacher" - Who are they? What are they rebelling against? The social impact of hundreds of thousands of teachers sharing and discussing resources in a network like Curio Ashley explains the challenges of going from the classroom to the startup world "There's a divide between what happens in schools and out of schools." Ashley has written for The Atlantic - how did her editors contradict the sacred beliefs of English teachers? The mindset, timing, and ebb and flow of teachers, which has a big impact on user growth Believe it or not, Ashley says, "I was a Luddite." Listen to her explain. What are the career paths available to teachers and how can EdTech startups expand opportunities? The suspicion teachers show towards Ashley because she's started a company (this is very real) Ashley's advice, which may surprise you, for teachers who want to carve out an entrepreneurial path If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson TheEdTechShop.com

41 MINMAY 1
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Ashley Lamb-Sinclair: CEO of Curio Learning

Jordan Levy - Executive Director of CapSource

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Jordanis a Forbes 30 Under 30 and serial education technology entrepreneur. He has started two EdTech companies that help higher-ed programs bridge the skills gap for their students through experientiallearning. His method is to integrate real companies into the education process through hands-on collaborations that expose learners tonew circumstances with real stakeholders, challenges, and outcomes. His company CapSource is a fast-growing marketplace where educators and students can find companies interested in collaboratingthrough specially designed project-based learning engagements. So far, CapSource’s has leveraged 100+ different host companypartners to provide in-depth learning experiencesto 1,500+ students at 25 different schools and universities around the glo...

36 MINAPR 26
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Jordan Levy - Executive Director of CapSource

Dr. Carolyn Brown - President of Foundations in Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Research scientist Dr. Carolyn Brown has spent more than 30 years studying the needs of struggling readers and has received support from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Education and the state of Iowa to develop and test strategies that work. She and Dr. Jerry Zimmerman are the co-founders ofFoundations in Learning,a provider of research-based tools designed to assess struggling readers, address their foundational skill deficits and empower them to achieve significant gains in reading fluency and comprehension. Theyrecently contributed an op-ed to SmartBrief entitled10 Ways to Combat Middle School Reading Failureand another one to Hechinger Report on the need toconnect cognitive science to reading instruction. Developed in close collaboration with school districts, Foundations in Learning’s premier productAccess Codeis an innovative blended assessment and intervention system designed for students who persistently struggle with reading comprehension and fluency. UsingAccessCode, teachers can diagnose struggling readers and help them develop automatic word recognition — the critical bridge between phonics and fluency. Episode highlights: The damaging assumptions our education system makes when teaching children to read Just how critical it is to get kids reading well by the third grade (Carolyn shares some shocking statistics) A deep dive into the “varied practice model,” a research-based approach to literacy instruction Why Carolyn decided to use the lessons she learned in research to start a company Carolyn quickly learned the difference between a research environment and the classroom – hear what she said about this The reason EdTech startups need education experienceandbusiness operators The “heavy lifting” technology can do for reading teachers (and why you can never take the teacher out of the room) Advice to teachers and researchers who want to start an education business venture Learn more about Carolyn's work here: https://www.foundations-learning.com/ If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson TheEdTechShop.com

37 MINAPR 18
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Dr. Carolyn Brown - President of Foundations in Learning

Clarence Tan - Co-founder of Boddle Learning

This episode of the podcast is brought to you byThe EdTech Shop– Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix.Click here to enroll for free. ### Clarence Tan understands the connection between fun and learning Clarence Tan is an EdTech entrepreneur who has been working in games and the e-learning industry for over 8 years. He grew up in China, Singapore, and the US, and has experienced private, public and homeschool education. He started his entrepreneurial journey back in 2011. While he was still a junior in college he worked with friends he met online to develop educational games and learning platforms for government municipalities in Colombia and South America. Additionally, he partnered with companies in North America to launch educational entertainment projects. Since then, he has been championing the positive impact of student engagement using educational gamification through his ventures and speaking engagements. He has the heart and mind of a creative and has always been fascinated by games and creative projects. Clarence is currently the Co-Founder & CEO atBoddle Learning, an EdTech company founded in 2018. Boddle Learning offers a game-based learning platform that delivers e-learning materials to K-8 students in game-format to engage and motivate them in academics. The game app also comes with a management platform that generates analytics & reports for teachers and parents to stay in the loop. Boddle is designed to use gamification to help elementary and middle schools benefit from higher student engagement and automated reporting. Episode highlights - Gamification in education Why games can help teachers assess students better (this is something I had not considered before) Just add points is not gamification - Clarence explains a better definition The role of "unnecessary steps" in making learning fun Clarence addresses the argument that game play doesn't lead to learning The moment in South America that set Clarence on a path to building educational games Make this mistake Clarence made in the past and your education venture will really struggle. Clarence explains what to do instead. Piloting your EdTech product in schools - Clarence has done this and he shares his lessons learned Clarence gives advice to education entrepreneurs just starting out Before we go...Clarence explains what Boddle means Important links Sign up for the Boddle Learning pilot here: https://www.boddlelearning.com/ Say hello to Clarence on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/clarencetanjl If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

26 MINAPR 10
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Clarence Tan - Co-founder of Boddle Learning

Ami Shah - Co-Founder & CEO of Peekapak

This episode of the podcast is brought to you by The EdTech Shop - Copywriting & Marketing Strategy for Education Startups. Get more schools to sign up and buy with The 5-Day Copy fix. Click here to enroll for free. ### On this episode of the podcast, I talk to Ami Shah.Ami is the CEO and Co-founder of Peekapak, an award-winning social-emotional learning platform that engages elementary students to learn skills like self-regulation, empathy, and teamwork and reaches over 200 000 educators and students. Using stories, evidence-based lessons, and game-based learning, Peekapak empowers educators to be proactive in helping curb future mental health issues. Ami has earned an MBA from INSEAD and has previously taught in K-4 classrooms and advised and volunteered at education-related non-profit organizations. After gaining marketing experience through roles at Procter & Gamble and driven by her passion to improve youth education, Ami made the jump to entrepreneurship and has since been featured on Toronto Life, Flare, TechVibes, CBC, and numerous other outlets. Ami and I take a deep dive into SEL & serving elementary schools. Highlights include: The mission for Peekapak Ami's TED talk - She talks about our real answers to the question "how are you?" I'm curious about how a tech platform can help build social-emotional skills. Ami explains how that's possible. The dynamic relationship between early childhood education and parental involvement when it comes to Peekapak and SEL Serving elementary schools, teachers, and students is special in EdTech - Ami tells us why. Ami has interviewed over 300 teachers. Here's what she's learned. The importance of modeling as the leader of a company. How teachers can get started with SEL (Ami recommends casel.org) Say hello to Ami on Twitter: (@amishahdotca) Try Peekapak: www.peekapak.com If you liked this episode then please subscribe on iTunes, leave a review, and share it with a friend. Thanks for listening! Gerard Dawson

23 MINMAR 28
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Ami Shah - Co-Founder & CEO of Peekapak

Chris Castiglione - co-founder of One Month

Today on the EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Chris Castiglione (@castig). Chris is the Dean of One Month, an adjunct professor at the business school at Columbia University, and the host of his own podcast, On Books. (Note: One reason to start your own company - you get to give yourself an awesome title like "Dean.") In simple terms, Chris is a twenty-first-century teacher. His company One Month is an online education platform teaching people technical skills like coding and project management through real-world projects in just 30 days. The company started when Chris and his co-founder Mattan began traveling around the world teaching people how to code. The problem was clear: they couldn't clone themselves, and there was a flood of students who wanted to learn from them. One Month was born. I first connected with Chris and his company in 2013. Having just sparked my own curiosity in learning to code, I dove into the course, which was one of the first Chris and Mattan offered on their site. I eventually wrote about the experience for Edutopia here. In just a few short lessons, probably under an hour, I had downloaded a new programming language onto my computer and created the basics of an app that was a clone of Pinterest. Just contrast that with the way a typical in-person course syllabus plays out. How long until students work on an exciting project? Days? Weeks? These satisfying wins, or "gold coin moments" as Chris calls them, are at the heart of great learning experiences, both online and in-person. Chris knows a thing or two about the power of lifelong learning. We discuss: - How in-person teaching experience led Chris to start his online education company - "Gold Coin Moments" and the difference between an online course and college class - The History of the Internet, an inspiring new writing project - Why knowing the mindset folks bring to your educational content is a difference maker - Motivating students in online education - And more Fun links from this episode: As a listener to the Edtech Startup Show, you can get 10% off coding courses at One Month. The History of The Internet: https://hackernoon.com/the-history-of-the-internet-cdb844ff460c Syllabus for Digital Literacy for Decision Makers: https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/courses/mba/2018/fall/b8125-001 On Books podcast: https://castig.org/on-books/ And more Like the show? Please give it a rating on iTunes and don’t forget to subscribe. You can also give me your feedback by tweeting@GerardDawson3with the hashtag #EdTechStartupShow – thanks for listening!

24 MINMAR 6
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Chris Castiglione - co-founder of One Month

Matthew Gross - Founder of NewsELA

Today on the EdTech Startup Show, I talk to Matthew Gross (@matthew_gross), founder and CEO of NewsELA. NewsELA is an instructional content platform that solves "the problem ofreading engagement holistically for students, teachers, and principals." Many teachers will recognize the company for its powerful text-levelingfeatures, though they do much more. Matt showed a sincere dedication to improving education during this conversation, and he shares stories and observations that both educators and EdTech industry folks will find fascinating. Highlight include: How poetry taught Matt he shouldn't skip his college classes. "I really don't think about technology at all." Matt explains this surprising statement. Why Matt and NewsELA reject "sit and get" EdTech. Expectations Matt has for Newsela and his peers in EdTech. The #1 pain point Matt hears from school and district administrators (and how he addresses it). The amazing transformation Matt has noticed in schools since 2012. "Good new...

21 MINFEB 26
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Matthew Gross - Founder of NewsELA

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