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Kukua is selected for EduApp4Syria to teach reading and writing to Syrian refugees

18, 02, 2015|

We are excited to announce that we are an initial winner in EduApp4Syria, an innovation competition promoted by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) that aims to help Syrian children learn how to read and write through the use of mobile technology. Kukua is one of five teams chosen amongst more than 79 bids from 31 countries. As a consequence of the Syrian crisis, millions of families [...]

Our most popular game amongst our users!

18, 02, 2015|

After spending time with children in the slums of Nairobi, we discovered that one of their favorite mobile games was Temple Run. Together with our developing team, we therefore decided to build a number of levels of our game that revolved around similar dynamics: running and jumping. A screenshot from one of our most popular levels to learn letter sounds on SEMA In our [...]

Kukua aiming for the Global Learning XPRIZE!

18, 02, 2015|

Last month, we traveled to Paris and Nairobi to attend the two Global Learning XPRIZE summits. What is the Global Learning XPRIZE? The XPRIZE Foundation is a California-based nonprofit that catalyzes global innovation by running incentive prize competitions to solve some of our time’s grand challenges. In the past few years, they’ve awarded prizes such as the $10M Ansari XPRIZE to launch a reusable manned spacecraft into space [...]

High engagement from our users during this month’s field testing of SEMA

17, 02, 2015|

The building and testing of our literacy and numeracy mobile-game, SEMA, is advancing each month driven by our user-centered design approach. This past month, our team was testing the latest prototypes of SEMA in Nairobi with children living in low income communities with little or no access to quality education. Testing our game as we build it allows us to acquire invaluable feedback to optimize game [...]

We’re building our game for smartphones. Here’s why:

16, 02, 2015|

One of the most common questions we get is why we’re focused on building a game for smartphones: do people in Sub-Saharan Africa have phones? What types of phones? I thought I’d take a few minutes to answer that question. In 2011, Marc Andreessen, a famous and outspoken Venture Capitalist, famously declared that “software is eating the world.” Two years later, Ben Evans, a partner at Andreessen’s VC [...]

Back from Nairobi where we tested our prototype

16, 02, 2015|

We just got back from Nairobi, Kenya, where we spent an intense two weeks testing our very first prototype with over 150 primary school children in Kibera slum. It was rewarding, exhausting, and amazing at the same time. To set up the pilot, we partnered with the Kenya Education Fund (KEF) – which provides support and resources for disadvantaged students in Keyna – and LitWorld – which focuses [...]

What are “Learning standards” and why are we making them?

16, 02, 2015|

We’re thrilled to announce that Kukua is a partner in a consortium developing standards frameworks for twenty-first century learning. Our job for the consortium is to create an international standards framework that can describe educational outcomes at many levels across many national educational systems. The consortium is led by Microsoft Research and includes several European universities, research centers in Germany and Portugal and ed tech startups such as Sweden’s [...]

Gambia: On the ground findings

16, 02, 2015|

To gain an intimate understanding of our potential users, we went to live in a small village called Mbollet Bah in rural Gambia. The community had 400 children, mostly illiterate or struggling to learn, both in and out of school, and whose families live on less than a dollar per day. We had three research objectives: 1) uncover passion points of our users as we work to create [...]

Packing for Gambia

16, 02, 2015|

Part of the Kukua team is packing for Gambia, a small country in West Africa. Steve and I will be spending time in a farming village called Mbollet-ba, typical of one section of our target market: rural subsistence village, low connectivity, solar power, low incomes, low educational attainment. There is no easily accessible urban centre but a small market town is within reach (10km) when needed. The village [...]

Our Team Values

16, 02, 2015|

From our first conversations, we felt strongly about building a company based on strong and authentic values. From past experiences, we saw that companies that lack a culture built on recognized values too often fail to rally teams and other stakeholders around their mission, and end up with misaligned expectations. At the same time, many of the organizations that have apparent values often fail to act on them when push comes to shove. As a mission-driven company, we're keen to [...]

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