World's First Fully Interactive Coding Studio For Kids, Codeverse, Launches In Chicago
Notable Entrepreneurs, Including Belly Co-Founder Craig Ulliott and Former Techweek CEO Katy Lynch, Launch Chicago-based EdTech Platform to Bring Coding to One Billion Children
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Apr 04, 2017, 10:30 ET
CHICAGO, April 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Announced today, Codeverse is the world's first hackable classroom and vertically integrated technology platform designed to teach children ages 6 to 12 the vital skill of coding. The company's kid-friendly programming language, KidScript, and flagship state-of-the-art coding studio bring technology to life, giving children a 3600 square foot interactive and collaborative space that inspires creativity while teaching them how to code projects, games and apps.
Codeverse is the brainchild of one of Chicago's most successful husband and wife duos, Craig Ulliott and Katy Lynch. The pair met at Where I've Been, Craig's first company, which was acquired by TripAdvisor in 2011 with 10 million users. Ulliott and Lynch then joined forces to build the explosively popular digital media firm, SocialKaty, which was acquired by Manifest Digital in 2014. Ulliott also co-founded leading loyalty company Belly, and Lynch served as CEO of Techweek.
Codeverse Founders - Craig Ulliott, Katy Lynch, Dave Arel
As the couple set out to build their legacy company, they tapped close friend Dave Arel to join the ranks as a third partner. Arel, who most recently served as Co-Founder/CTO of Roniin, was also the first person Craig brought into Belly, where he served as Director of Product. Collectively responsible for building twelve start-ups, the team's experience sets an unprecedented foundation for Codeverse to educate and inspire the next generation of coding experts.
Codeverse's mission to teach a billion children to code is already well underway. The company has raised significant capital from local and national investors and has plans to launch three more Codeverse studios in Chicago over the next 18 months. Additionally, they will be opening studios in every major metropolitan area within the next five years before expanding internationally.
"Learning to code at a young age is an absolute necessity for all kids," says Lynch. "Coding today is so much more than computer science; it's a way of thinking that promotes intellectual curiosity, problem solving and creative expression. These are the real skills kids need for their futures."
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be more than one million unfilled tech jobs within the next three years. "Technology has already changed every industry and left many people behind," says Arel. "Too many of our children are not adequately prepared for tomorrow's jobs. We created Codeverse to fix this."
UNPRECEDENTED STUDIO SPACE
Developed in secret for over a year, the first Codeverse studio and technology platform launches in Lincoln Park this July. When a student enters the cutting-edge studio, an iPad® lights up with his or her name. Kids use their iPads to navigate the space and write with the company's proprietary coding language, KidScript, which enables them to build games and apps as well as hack hundreds of objects ranging from lasers and 3D printers to robotic arms and fog machines. The million-dollar facility is also full of collaborative and social elements, such as a 20-foot screen where 10 children can collaborate on coding challenges at a time.
"As kids use the platform, the curriculum adapts to their skills and learning style," says Ulliott. "The underlying data of the program also allows us to constantly refine the product. The studios double as the ultimate product testing ground."
KIDSCRIPT: A KID-FRIENDLY PROPRIETARY LANGUAGE
Built from the ground up purely to teach children to code, KidScript is Codeverse's original, kid-friendly coding language. Using KidScript, children learn the craft of code while bringing their own ideas to life through a simplified programming language. This innovation allows children to see results as they type, providing a much greater understanding of cause and effect, as well as an immediate sense of accomplishment. Unlike traditional coding, feedback is given in real time, which enables children to correct errors on the spot, and creates an active learning environment. The underlying curriculum is self-guided and adaptive, meeting and challenging children at each individual skill level.
ON-SITE SUPPORT FROM HIGHLY QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS
While KidScript allows for an adaptive learning curriculum, the Codeverse studio brings a unique advantage with its on-site staff, made up of certified K-12 teachers in the Chicagoland area. Social interaction plays an integral part in the development process for children, and the support provided by the teaching specialists aids in the learning process.
Teachers on-site at Codeverse are able to gain real-time visibility into student progress and engagement as the incredible technology in the studio enhances, but does not replace, this fundamental aspect of the classroom.
Codeverse membership starts at $125 per month, and gives children recurring use of the studio space as well as access to the coding platform from home. The platform and curriculum is designed for children between the ages of 6 and 12.
Codeverse is a vertically integrated technology platform and coding school for kids aged 6 to 12 that was founded on the mission to teach one billion children to code. Its first studio location, an unprecedented tech-enabled, hackable classroom, will open in Lincoln Park in summer 2017. Since it's inception, Codeverse has partnered with several known organizations and schools to bring the technology to market including British International School of Chicago, South Loop, as well as the Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago. The company has plans to expand both nationally and internationally.