Q&A: How Kiddom’s Centralized Platform Streamlines Online Learning

Google Earth | Ask a Tech TeacherFounded in 2015, Kiddom is an educational technology platform designed to improve the teaching and learning experience in remote or hybrid classrooms. 

The technology enables a one-on-one connection between students and teachers, moderated class discussions, curriculum management, and much more.

This year, the company sought to add video chat and in-platform messaging. Head of product Nick Chen and head of marketing Jennifer Levanduski share how Kiddom’s centralized platform is ideal for students and teachers, and why one portal is key to engaging students, teachers, and parents. 

How has Kiddom evolved since the pandemic?

Jennifer: Over the last nine months, we’ve added features that focus on our platform’s communication. Now, curriculum structure, assessment, announcements, and communication will all live in one place, enabling students and teachers to use only Kiddom rather than a Zoom, Canvas, and Clever account. 

Stream’s chat API allows us to incorporate chat into videos and other places in our tool.

Nick: We’ve been going at lightspeed to build more communication functionalities into Kiddom. We didn’t build a chat solution in-house. The only way to achieve this in four months was to do a chat integration because we needed to do it reliably and at scale. 

How do you moderate conversations in chat? 

Nick: Our philosophy is: no student communication without teacher supervision. Students can’t just send direct messages to other students — we don’t want to create a problem. However, teachers can make a group, and students can interact under teacher guidance.

More communication flexibility will come hand-in-hand when we implement a rich moderation toolset.

In a world where multiple platforms, logins, and online accounts are the norm, what is the value of having a centralized edtech platform?

Jennifer: There is an inherent timesaving value from the effort applied using one versus multiple tools. Using one platform enhances the effectiveness of learning. Less executive functioning is required to get to the content. When students achieve mastery of one tool, they get more out of it. 

Why do students learn better when they have strong community support? 

Nick: You don’t just learn from listening to your teacher. You also learn from listening to your peers. Tech doesn’t replace the in-classroom experience, but it can replicate the routines you get in a school setting, such as greeting your classmates and collaborating on projects. It lessens the pain of moving to a remote learning environment

What is the biggest challenge facing edtech today? 

Nick: There already was inequity in the classroom before COVID-19. The pandemic has exacerbated this. Lack of devices and network access is a big problem. The big question is, whose responsibility is it to make sure students are connected? 

Jennifer: Inequity is one of the biggest challenges everyone in edtech is up against, and education stakeholders need to work together to provide short-term and long-term solutions.

Takeaway: A single tool improves student adoption, making distance learning more effective.

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