Project Open your World, Open Your Mind
Approximately 20 words left (160 characters).
About Your Organization
Country where this project is creating social impact
Is your organization a
Your role in Education
The type of school(s) your solution is affiliated with
How long has your organization been operating?
Less than a year
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Select the stage that best applies to your solution
Idea (you're poised to launch)
How long has your solution been in operation?
Still in idea phase, but looking to launch soon
The Need: What problem are you trying to solve?
Education is inequal. Students from impoverished backgrounds or underrepresented groups perform the worse and do not have access to top education or teachers. More students and teachers need to be empathetic of this situation and feel the need to change it. However, it is usually the case that kids receiving superior education exist in a bubble and do not get to interact with kids from underperforming schools. Also the president has many initiatives to push STEM education because American students aren't as competitive. Students of color and that come from impoverished backgrounds perform the worse in these areas.
The Solution: What is your solution? Be specific!
I want to create an online message board where students can exchange notes, get homework answers, schedule study groups, and network with students within your own class, within the school, and between schools. Students from different backgrounds can virtually gain access to any classroom. We will strengthen the classroom community and enhance learning by promoting discussion. We will get students excited to solve problems and helping each other by creating an environment open to discussion and exchanging ideas. It is good to focus on STEM subjects because it prepares students to solve the world’s problems. Getting students to think about others problems is key to empathy.
The Model: Walk us through a specific example of how your solution makes a difference; include your primary activities
A student or a teacher will be able to set up a page for their classroom. If someone wants a homework problem explained to them, they can search for the answer from other postings made by anyone from any school, and they can post it to their class’s board. To encourage answering to posts and asking questions, students can earn points. Students will also be able to “like” posts which will earn the author even more points. Users with the highest points will gain recognition on the site. The point system is expected to make students participate in discussion more because of its gaming quality while establishing themselves as leaders. Creating an environment where students want to exchange information and help each other will encourage empathy.
The Marketplace: Who are your peers and competitors? Identify others also working to address the needs you are and what differentiates you from them. What challenges could these players pose to your success or growth?
Blackboard allows students to manage their courses but no one uses it for discussions. Coursekit has a similar product but teachers have to set up a profile for their courses. Relying on teachers would take a long time to get many people using the site. Edmodo also requires teachers or schools to sign up. However, many teachers are adverse to using technology and relying on them would take a long time to get many users. Yet, most students use social media everyday and site will make it possible for them to set up a profile for their class, just like a facebook page. The most important difference from my site and these is that students will have control and be able to connect to students in classes all over the country.
Now that you have thought out your entry, help us pitch it.
Define your company, program, service, or product in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
Facebook for classes. An online learning community centered around the classroom.
Identify what is innovative about your solution in 1-2 short sentences [136 characters]
A community linked between classes and between schools throughout the world. Open courseware meets open classroom.
This Entry is about (Issues)
What has been the impact of your solution to date?
What is your projected impact over the next 1-3 years?
I would like to have students signed up to my site from everyone college in the US. An increase in student pass rates, grades, more students signing up for STEM courses.
What barriers might hinder the success of your project? How do you plan to overcome them?
Getting users to sign up. I do not know what the motivation for students is to sign up on their own. I would need a student at every school or region that can enlist their peers and teachers to sign up their classroom. These students might be compensated with school credit at first since expenses would need to be kept to a minimum.
I can also partner with certain online education providers to promote the site for their users.
Getting the new classes to return: working with the various school departments to market the site to teachers and students.
Waning interest during off school months: provide a marketplace for students to buy or sell products and services to one another.
Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and track growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact
Have all the New York public and Private Colleges registered in the site.
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your six-month milestone
Partner with major school clubs to email students about the site.
Enlist ambassadors at key school to sign up users.
Get a web developer to design the site.
Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone
Have users signed up in every state.
Identify three major tasks you will have to complete to reach your 12-month milestone
Have the site partnered with Pearson, McGraw Hill, and other academic publishers to connect users of their product to the online
Partner with academic associations to connect professors to the site.
Hire student leaders in every region to promote the site on their campus and surrounding campuses
Founding Story: We want to hear about your "Aha!" moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution's potential to change the world [125 words]
In my school the main way students have to communicate with each other is by posting flyers on message boards and emailing people in their class. However the emails were still being used like a message board and there was not much incentive to respond to them because you can’t see if and how others responded to their request. I thought there needs to be a way students can reach their entire school like the message board system, but also be more engaging and strengthen the sense of community. That’s when I figured that if there were an online forum where students could speak to each other centered around the classroom, they would be more compelled to help one another.
Tell us about your partnerships
I do not have any partnerships but I would like to work with Pearson and McGraw Hill as well as academic associations and Universities such as MIT and Stanford.
What type of team (staff, volunteers, etc.) will ensure that you achieve the growth milestones identified in the Social Impact section? [75 words]
Web developers to build the site. Student on campus marketers.
Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren't specified within the list