Impact-Seekers from every age gathered at Garage48 Edutech Hacktahon to offer disruptive solutions in the field of education

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” said Nelson Mandela once. Our hackathon was kicked-off on Friday evening with this quote presented by our co-hosts Kai Isand and Joao Rei, underlining the importance of every single idea to create an impact on our biggest and longest journey in life: education! True to the core, but what type of a weapon (i.e. impact) are we talking about? One that's enhanced with technology or one that's evolved by phycology? Or maybe both?

Let’s start from the beginning and explain “how come education became a key topic for a hackathon?” Now think of a car from 150 years ago – or should we say a horse carriage? How about the phones back in 19th century? Think of the fancy smartphone you are holding right now and imagine those museum-like phones from old times. The modern transformation in education, however, hasn’t been that impressive. Many kids today are certainly more exposed digital engagement in learning processes but we are still lacking personalised and engaging approaches in many disciplines of education. Talking is rather easy though! What would you suggest to do in order to bring a new breath to the whole system and break-free from “old-school” approaches? How would you combine traditional educational practices with technology and psychology so the process of studying could be more exciting and effective? 

Our participants came up with many disruptive ideas to cover all these matters and their suggested solutions were truly remarkable. So many innovative and practical solutions were discussed to be applied to the field of education in the most effective ways by our multinational and inter-disciplined attendees. We had more than 100 participants from 14 different nationalities, including Latvia, Belarus, Turkey, Estonia, Moldova, Morocco, Ukraine, India and South Africa. 31 ideas were pitched and 17 of these found teams. 10 ideas were pitched by students aged 12-18! This was the first time in the history of Garage48 that next to professionals also mid- and high school students were involved in a hackathon. They didn’t only pitch brilliant ideas but also took part as participants to provide real-life insights, beside competing with their various skills. 

“We initiated this hackathon to trigger and observe the real impact by bringing people from different ages and backgrounds together. The aim is to enable education to become something more personal – customised, so to say - through both psychological and technological mediums,“ stated Birgit Lao, CEO of Innove - the partner and initiator of Garage48 Edutech Hackathon. “We heard 31 ideas with a potential of tremendous change and are very proud to be a part of something much bigger than ourselves.”

“It was truly amazing to witness so many young students coming all the way to Estonia from different countries just to make their voices heard and make a real difference in the system  – meaning in their actual lives and futures,” added our co-host Joao Rei passionately.

While some participants came prepared with detailed market research and/or certain materials to support their ideas (e.g. a bag full of Legos), some came with ready solutions (e.g. ready VR tools, an interactive button, etc.) looking for problems for an ideal match. Eventually a great balance was set among different age groups and diverse skill-sets in order to provide the best results within 48 hours.

THE PITCH! 

“The ideas and vision that have emerged from this hackathon have been quite inspiring for me as a designer in the field of educational technology,” said our mentor and jury member Jonn Galea, Lead Product Designer at Lingvist. “It was really amazing to see so many kids involved as well, the future is in safe hands.”

After seeing 17 teams presenting their brilliant prototypes  at the final event, the jury had to make a decision and choose the winners. As our host Joao Rei stated, everyone involved were real winners as they came together and dedicated their weekends on something very important for all people. Yet, the strongest teams had to be recognized. Here is the list of winners and ideas below.

The Overall Winner: Feed Bee – awarded with 2700€ from Lingvist

Feed Bee is a tool that helps students rate how well they understood their lessons and provide the reasons, as the essential part of education is direct feedback and collaboration.

*Team members: Indrek Stern - Developer & Pitcher / Marta Jansone - Student Advisor & Pitcher / Vera Hämala - Student Advisor / Timo Treit - Designer / Raivo Ilmsalu - Family Therapist & Child Psychology Expert 

“It was very humbling to work and brainstorm with different age groups as equals – and the best part was that these 2 young minds were the ones who found the best ideas and we just implemented them!” said team leader Indrek Stern. “All the hardwork was worth it” added young participants Marta (12yo) and Vera (11yo) with tears of happiness in their eyes.

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1st Runner-up: VR Confident – awarded with Golden Tickets to Robotex Entrepreneurial Challenge and Valge Klaar gift cards

VR Confident is a VR-based solution that gives you an opportunity to practice your speech in front of the given crowd before getting on the stage. It is possible to select different audience profiles as well as locations (classroom, conference room etc.) They claim that public speaking anxiety should never get in the way of stopping innovative ideas from making the world a better place.

*Team members: Youssef El Moumni - Team Lead and Developer / Matthias Markus - Content Creator/ Krislin Raik - Creative Strategist / Ott Marten Lunge - Head of Design / Berrin Nese Bahsi – Designer/ Dasha Fomenko - Designer / Chantal Alicia Teresa Girs - Designer

“It was the most interesting weekend we’ve ever had” said 12 yo Chantal from Finland while Dasha (12yo / Russian) and Neşe (10yo / Turkish) were nodding in agreement.“At first I thought it was going to be weird to work with adults but they made the whole experience so much fun and educating. I got to do so many things that I didn’t even know I can do!” added Chantal.

Youssef, the team lead from Morocco, highlighted that the young ones actually came up with all the key ideas – the building blocks so to say – and others simply followed their insights and suggestions. All team members stated that they want to go forward with this idea and turn it into a real, life-changing product.


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2nd Runner-up: P29 School – awarded with Fast Track Application Process for the next LearnSpace batches +  Exit Room coupons

P29 School is a unique program that teaches you the technical, interpersonal and professional skills required to get your dream job at major tech startups.

*Team members: Mohamed Bouya - Lead / Robert Võeras - Biz Dev and Analyst / Nguyen Huyen Trang - Education and Strategy / Galina Orlova - UX and Education Expert / Abdel-Ali Ammora - Finance and Business


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Favourite of the Audience: MultiLingo – awarded with 3 months subscriptions to Lingvist Premium Services.

MultiLingo is a technology that helps multilingual kids distinguish languages better and learn them faster. It allows learning several languages simultaneously, adjusting to child’s needs using adaptive machine learning algorithms.

*Team members: Tatsiana Zaretskaya - Team Lead / Serhiy Krynytskyy - Product Manager / Sander Puntso - Software Developer / Risto Põldsalu - Software Developer / Polina Shevchenko - Business Developer


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Best Pitch: Artsiom Sposab from Great Seekers – awarded with 3D-printed Einstein bust

Great Seekers developed an app that will guide youngsters with different kinds of tasks or questions through a fictional world. While answering the questions they learn how to organize meaningful web search and filter the required information.

*Team members: Artyom - Visionary / Javier - Developer / Kate - Education Expert / Max - Developer & Visionary


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Fastest Exit: Zoment – awarded with Hill Hill Billiard Café coupon

Zoment aims to simplify school life for students through an improved version of e-school, supported by more teacher interactions.

*Team members: Roman - Designer / Marco - Student / Kopal - Visionary / Ivan - Designer / Tom - Visionary


Here are the rest of the competing ideas and teams:  

1- AISee: Digital AI coach bot for students. It is claimed to be the first non-human AI coaching bot that assists students to discover their skill levels by setting learning goals and motivating to achieve them.

*Team members: Ivo Capins - Marketing & Visionary / Guntis Valters - Machine Learning / Jaan Markus Jahilo - Mobile developer / Roberts Pauls Tohver - Mobile developer / Jaana Kool - Designer

2- AR Geometry: A geometry book with an AR app to help students develop space vision via 3D models and learn geometry in an easier and more fun way.

*Team members: Nadia-Projetc Manager / Nikolay-Developer / Anton-Designer / Polina-Artist / Larys - Education Expert.

3- Edumus: A platform for bringing experts from different backgrounds to schools to teach, share experiences and make the system more versatile.

*Team members: Maria Rahamägi - Team Lead / Laura Toomast - Educatıon Expert / Kaisa Krusenberg - Designer / Jüri-Joonas Kerem - Programmer

4- Quiz Coin: Quizcoin is a platform for career orientation and personal development that helps students improve skills and create an accredited CV for future employment. It claims that “Earning by Learning” is possible.

*Team members: Victoria - Team Lead / Maxim - Backend developer / Grigore-fullstack / Egor-visionary and iOS developer / Ruxanda - Designer

5- CompAct: An app to help companies & schools form sustainable behaviour habits in a fun & interactive way in order to change the overall mindset on sustainability and cut down costs.

*Team members: Egle - Sustainability Expert / Gert & Andry - Developers / Helen - Education Expert / Kaisa - Business & Sustainability Expert / Kristjan - Education Expert / Manuel - Software Engineer

6- Confifence: An app to help shy people build confidence and come forward through various tasks.

*Team members: Kirill - Programmer / Senya - Leader person / Sasha - Designer

7- Friday 15th: A career consultancy platform called fillSkill that helps students figure out their own professional passions and build corresponding skill-sets based on market demands.

*Team members: Deniss Orlov - Manager / Gregor Tammet - Developer / Paul Oskar Soe - Developer / Erik Kaljumäe - Developer

8- Anio Team: An education-based game that motivates learners in long-terms via gamification. I.e. a program to survive education life. 

*Team members: Arina - Designer / Veronica- Designer / Nastya - Designer / Denis - Programmer / Kostya - Programmer

9- WhatIF: An app that uses animations to help students understand and love physics by showing them what would happen if the laws of physics worked differently or completely stopped working.

*Team members: Ksenia - Visioner / Milana - Designer / Timothy - Designer

10- MeetWork: A community platform for problem solving.It helps people to team up and work together on certain topics by benefiting from the power of cooperation and collective minds.

*Team members: Natalie Kursova - Project Manager / Olga Kutuzova - Education Expert / Vlad Matyuk - Designer / Vova Malyarevich - Programmer / Daniel Markevich - Visualiser / Maria Klockel – Team Leader

11- Button: Smart classroom button to collect, store and visualise lesson activity data to analyze and improve learning experience.

*Team members: Tarmo Pruuli - Business & Marketing /  Tiit Kass - IT / Jevgeni Soots - Visionary / Tanel Keres - Expert

IT WAS A BLAST!

As Innove’s Birgit Lao stated, with this much energy and passion for the subject, it is surely possible to make a change.

In cooperation with Innove, Garage48 is very proud to empower participants with very different profiles who came up with many revolutionary ideas in the field of education. We are truly thankful and grateful to all our mentors and partners who made our hackathon truly impactful through their guidance, know-how and passion.

Special thanks goes to our mentors:

  • Joao Rei – Co-host, Garage48
  • Kai Isand – Co-host, Garage48
  • Natalie Mets – Project Manager, Garage48
  • Birgit Lao – CEO, Innove
  • Jonn Galea, Lead Product Designer at Lingvist
  • Raul Liive, Product Manager at Lingvist
  • Mikk Tõnissoo, Data Scientist at Lingvist
  • Marina Shutova, Community Manager at Lingvist
  • Svenia Busson, CEO at the LearnSpace Accelerator
  • Calum Cameron - Management Team Member at Startup Wise Guys
  • John Sullivan, Founder and President at Resmantra OU
  • Mykhailo Kudla, Marketing Campaign Manager at Taxify
  • Elizaveta Lebedeva, Data Scientist at Taxify
  • Gerrerth Kaur, Backend Engineer at Taxify
  • Denys Pysmennyi, Senior Software Engineer at Taxify
  • Anna Lozytska, Android Developer at Taxify
  • Märt Aro, Co-Founder, DreamApply & Nordic EdTech Forum "N8"
  • Paul Senosi, Director of Marketing & Communication at the International School of Tallinn
  • Ian Karell, Primary 2 Class Teacher at Tallinn European School
  • Martin Verrev, Creative Engineer at Littlebit
  • Anzori Barkalaja, Head of Centre at Centre of Educational Innovation
  • Janno Stern, CEO at Devtailor
  • Shaun Deanesh, Partner at Innovation Factory, external lecturer at TTU
  • Marko Russiver, Founder & CEO of Guaana
  • Tõnis Ostrat, Technical Director at Paladin Partners
  • Ellie Day, Senior Software Engineer at Atlassian
  • Nic Scott, CDO at Educraftor
  • Peter Fagerström, Educraftor

And sincere gratitude to all sponsors and partners:

Innove, Lingvist, Taxify, Tallinn European School and ValgeKlaar

It was a blast! See you in the next hackathon!