“We are living in a time of rapid change in education where we can use digital innovations to reach all learners in a personalized learning environment. Our future is one of borderless education where teachers become coaches who inspire our kids to reach any height possible through digital technologies that unlock learning through play.”
There is a massive shift happening in education which is long overdue. We continue to teach today the way education was designed hundreds of years ago, with an educator as the subject matter expert who is imparting their knowledge to a group of varying levels of skill and ability.
This system focuses on education that is one too many, making it expensive to scale and dependent on access to the best educators to receive the best education.
There are three main problems in education we are solving for as we work to transform how education is delivered equitably and effectively to all learners.
First, classrooms have a vast array of learners with very different levels of skill. Personalized learning is critical to ensure all learners succeed but in our current system, teachers don’t have the capacity to deliver personalized instruction to each student. Technology can help here.
Second, the pace of change of subject matter that learners need to be successful later in life is ever-changing and teachers do not have the ability to be experts of all domains. It is critical to use content from many different experts to support teachers who should be focused on inspiring and coaching kids to reach their potential. Technology can also help here.
Finally, kids today have a very high bar for the level of engaging content they want to consume through digital platforms like games. At the same time, they are being delivered traditional learning materials from teachers and we are losing them. We need to provide highly engaging learning content to keep kids engaged. Technology is the solution here.
Squiggle Park aims to tackle this problem. Eyeread (operating as Squiggle Park | Dreamscape) develops research-based digital literacy technologies in the form of video games for all learners regardless of skill or circumstance. We have demonstrated reliable, repeatable success with English Language Learning populations in Canada and around the world. We work with schools and organizations to support educators in the delivery of English literacy programming for students from preschool to adult. Our programs are unique because of the algorithms which have been designed and tested to keep users in their zone of proximal development ensuring learning content adapts to the users unique ability. The technologies are adopted by our clients because of their ease of implementation which leads to high user adoption and for the educator dashboards that automatically collect learner progress data and provide it back to educators in the form of simple dashboards to help inform their instruction.
Our learning platform allows educators, publishers and content creators to publish content through our adaptive learning algorithms to be leveled and presented to learners in a personalized way through highly engaging interfaces they love. The technology used data from the learners to personalize learning pathways that increase motivation and mastery of learning.
The platform has been designed to be accessible to all learners regardless of their physical access to traditional educational institutions and without the need to pay.
About Julia Rivard
Julia Rivard Dexter is an innovative tech entrepreneur and former Olympian who competed in the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia as a member of the Canadian Canoe Kayak team.
Julia has lead several successful technology ventures, including as CEO of SheepDogInc.ca, Google’s first North American premier Apps, Senior Partner at Code + Mortar, an innovative web and software development firm, whose work has been recognized by the International Webby Awards and Pursu.it a not-for-profit crowdfunding platform that has raised over 1M for athletes who need support to reach their Olympic goal.
Julia’s latest venture is as Co-Founder and CMO of Squiggle Park which aims to improve literacy rates for children worldwide. Squiggle Park was chosen as a Google for Entrepreneurs company. Since launching in October 2016, Squiggle Park has grown to be used in over 7000 schools around the world and is supporting newcomers to Canada through a partnership with the IRCC.
Julia has also volunteered as Vice Chair of the Board at The Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, member of the Nova Scotia Premier’s Advisory Council, member of the Canadian Olympic Committee Team Services and Executive Board member at CanoeKayak Canada.
For her volunteer work, Julia was honoured with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2014 that same year she was the runner up for the E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year. In 2015 Julia was awarded the BMO Global Growth and Innovation Award and chosen as a finalist as Halifax Chamber Business Person of the Year.
Currently she is an associate for CDL Atlantic and is on the Prime Minister’s Economic Round Table for the Digital Industries. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Nova Scotia Power. In 2018 Julia was recognized as one of Canada’s Inspiring 50 Women in STEM presented by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Canada with the support of the Senate of Canada.