Savivo can make the education and technology “match made in heaven” marriage merry

In this highly spot-on and interesting commentary on Huffington Post, the author raised a few thought-provoking questions about the “match made in heaven” between education and technology, and at Savivo, we have the answers. So, hear, hear.

The author asserted: “We’re taking an awfully long time to adjust. There is a growing number of education Apps out there now but there is no unity. All of them are different. I’m not saying they’re poorly structured, some of them are very useful indeed, but there should be a coherent syllabus to follow.”

At Savivo, we embrace a unique learning philosophy in our innovation, with learner-centered and self-directed learning pedagogies underpinning our e-learning products. Savivo’s flagship products – Mingoville English Virtual World and Mondiso Math are designed by school teachers with a structured holistic curriculum in mind.

While creating Mingoville English (http://mingoville.com), we saw that online educational content was and is but still very fragmented. A virtual world e-learning platform will enable a cohesive and holistic online learning environment to meet the learning objective of expanding a child’s English capacity in a fun, communal and smart way.

Within our e-learning games, there is dedicated areas for teachers and parents to also track a student’s learning progress and be involved in a child’s learning. This sets our products apart from being just another educational game but positioned as the preferred companion for parents and teachers in educating a child.

The author also asked, “So why not introduce free or ‘pay to view’ online learning? It makes sense. Almost everyone has access to a computer, a tablet, an iPad, a smart phone, so why not provide a medium for everybody to use? It can be classroom based or ‘out of school hours’ but following a curriculum.”

In 2013, we launched the Mondiso Math Youtube classroom with this in mind so that every child can gain access to Math learning for free. The Math online world games, apps and assessment can simply be purchased by schools and parents via http://mondiso.com or iOS appstore or Google Play Store!

Today we see more than 30% school children in Denmark have access to our innovative and holistic learning platforms, which is a testament to the credibility of our products and our brands. This on top of our partnerships with governments and businesses across the world, Savivo is clearing well in the game.

Visit http://savivo.com to learn more about us!

Huffington Post: Technology and Education: A Match Made in Heaven?

Mingoville Commentary

Can Schools Really Be Locked Out In Today’s Digital Age?

In the midst of the on-going schools lockout in Denmark, we received an interesting email from an inquisitive 6th grader this week, Albert Einstein, he candidly calls himself.

Little “Albert Einstein” writes: “Hej Skolemat. Jeg synes at overslag hos buller er lidt for svært. Min far og jeg var nød til at være sammen om at lave den med en lommeregner og papir. (han er ingeniør) jeg ville bare lige sige det.”
Skolemat emailWhat struck me was the commanding level of critical inquiry in his email even if his feedback remains subjective to each his own but, it reveals how a child does not take his learning journey any less serious just because it is not in a “school”.

This brings me back to the bigger questions: What exactly does a school lockout mean in today’s digital age? Can teachers – and education – really be locked out?

Schools compounds may be locked up, teachers may be denied from teaching, but in today’s digital age, “school” never closes because what is “school” is no longer clearly defined by mere human, physical compounds and boundaries.

For all the policy debate ensuing in Denmark, the irony is that, education is not locked out even as teachers are. It actually reveals a paradigm shift in motion.

Since the schools lockout, Mingoville has seen a surge in interest, downloads and purchases in our educational apps on the iPad in particular – as of today – more than 30% of the Top 20 iPad apps in the Danish Education Store belongs to us.

“It tells us that with a schools lockout, parents in Denmark are left to proactively seek out for their kids alternative learning means or should we say, alternative teachers to facilitate learning”, reveals Mingoville’s CEO, Stephan Stephensen.

At this point, it is critical to point out that a schools lockout is not uncommon elsewhere in the world, though, for very different (often unforeseen) reasons.

Just a decade ago, the SARS outbreak in Asia had forced schools to be closed, then there was the H1N1 epidemic just a few years back that had schools shutting too.

I was teaching in a pre-tertiary institution in Singapore when the H1N1 epidemic called for a school “lockout”, and the lockout had to happen in less than 24 hours.

Fortunately, I was teaching in a digital education-ready school. Instructions of e-learning plans were sent to teachers right away. For the rest of the week, lessons and assessments were conducted digitally, teachers simply “worked” from home.

In a digital education age, the role of teachers ought to have taken a big shift. And perhaps central to the debate should be about such paradigm shifts in Denmark.

Stephan said: “The lockout reveals to us that even as 30% of schools in Denmark are using our digital learning products but the role of teachers have not shifted to truly facilitate the digital age. There is a gap between rhetoric and practice.”

Instead, burden has fallen on parents to stand in the gap to work out contingency plans for kids, as we saw a massive surge in private purchases of our products.

“This intrigued us as one would expect schools in today’s digital age to be better equipped to ensure learning will not be disrupted. All it would have taken was a digital-learning contingency plan and the teachers to facilitate it,” he concluded.

While adults fight their battles, let us not undermine a child’s ability to be serious self-directed digital learners — if this should add perspective to the debate, too.

Because in today’s digital age, education never stops. The show will go on.

Then what – really – are we fighting about?

Jan Lin jl@mingoville.com

Gamification in Education – Unveiling its Potential

Mashable recently published an intriguing article on the use of “gamification” in education, highlighting its success, which sits perfectly with Mingoville’s learning philosophy in creating our “learn-through-play” e-learning products that are used in classrooms in several countries today.

As advocators of (virtual) gamification in education, Mingoville embraces a learning philosophy where learning is both self-directed and learner-centered in designing our e-learning platforms – Mingoville English and Mondiso Maths – both have tasted success.

However, while Mingoville English and Mondiso Math universes both had gamification applied in their development process, we went one step further, and have found the success of our platforms to hinge on the high quality of animation characters and real voice actors.

Developing them, took over a million dollars but we believe it’s worth it. As it currently stands, our belief stems from understanding how gamification in education offers a holistic and cohesive learning approach as online learning materials are often fragmented and text-based.

Our cohesive and dialogue-based game design approach not only enables a learner to begin to take ownership of their learning at a young age but is also an excellent trigger for focus and for lifelong learning. True learning is often inspired, gamification in education can do just that.

Yet as one of the pioneers in virtual gamification in education, we say to reach the full potential of gamification, virtually at least, requires for game developers to pay attention to the quality of the multi-sensory experience in developing its equally high quality cohesive content.

Mashable.com: Does Gamification Help Classroom Learning?

The Power of Play in early Childhood Learning

There is nothing more important than the power of play in early childhood learning. Play is the way that young children learn about the world, be that through social interactions, developing fine motor skills, learning language skills or developing their powers of imagination.

There are no less than 34 different definitions of what play is in the Webster Desk Dictionary of the English Language. These include, but are not limited to:
.       Light, brisk and changing movement (for example pretending to be an animal such as a butterfly)
.       To act or imitate a person or character
.       To employ a piece of equipment (playing with toy bricks as an example)
.       Exercise or activity for amusement (games of tag)
The world of play also encompasses singing silly songs to experiment with language, playing physical games and exploring the world through re-enacting various role-playing scenarios.

Whatever children do, they learn best through play but in recent years a new way to play has come on the scene. There has been a huge increase in the rise of iPad, iPhone and Android apps which are both intuitive and educational and have captivated a whole generation of preschoolers.

For parents who are worried about the amount of “screen time” their youngsters are exposed to the rise of such apps may have some cause for concern. After all, many experts suggest that children under the age of two should be allowed to watch no television at all, with older children being limited on the amount of television they watch. With educational apps, however it is a slightly different story as far as the experts are concerned.

Unlike television watching which is a passive, one way process in which children tend to “zone out” from the reality around them, educational apps encourage an interactive, two way approach to learning. When using educational apps, young children are not only being exposed to the world around them, they are developing their fine motor skills and cognitive abilities in a challenging and stimulating, interactive environment.

Just as with any other kind of toy or entertainment, parents should exercise some control over what they allow their children to play with. There is a vast choice of so-called educational apps on the market so where do you start with choosing the best ones for your child? Ex. do your kid need to learn to tell time, The Mingoville Fun Clock App could be a good app to choose. Or if the kid need to practice math the Apps from Mondiso can be recommended.

There is no way to block inappropriate content from your device so ensure that you only download apps from a trusted developer. User reviews are also a great way to find out whether an app is suitable for your child so make sure you read them before you make your choices. It is also wise to try out the game yourself before handing it over to your child. You want to go for apps which are challenging and entertaining and avoid those which are repetitive, boring and fail to stimulate your child`s imagination.

As with all technology it is a good idea to limit the amount of time your child spends playing with these apps. Despite that, your mobile phone can be used for so much more than merely distracting your child while you are at the supermarket. Choosing educational and entertaining apps can certainly help your child get a head start when it comes to learning about the world through play.

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