“It took us three years, from 2017 to 2020, to succeed in this stage and in July 2020, we went out to the market and mentioned that that is what we had been doing inside our workplace for the final three years,” mentioned Shantanu Najhawan, founding member of Tekie.
To place issues into perspective, it took WhiteHat Jr underneath two years to construct an analogous coding for teenagers platform and for essentially the most half, it was the corporate’s MVP or v1 product. So what makes Tekie completely different from some other ‘coding for teenagers’ startup?
Whereas most competing platforms are instructing college students block-based programming which implies college students drag and drop features to construct a logical sequence of instructions, Tekie is making an attempt to show younger college students the basics of text-based programming, which is to jot down precise coding language syntax.
If the problem was enabling 12-year-olds to understand these ideas, for Tekie, the answer is an animated academic collection to assist the scholars grasp the fundamentals of Python programming language. Moreover this 39-episode animated collection, the startup additionally makes use of examples coupled with actions centred round actual world ideas and summary sci-fi issues to interrupt down the ideas for teenagers in courses sixth to twelfth.
Animation Meets Coding: Tekie’s Distinctive Method
Based in 2017 by Anand Verma and Naman Mukund, Tekie goals to develop scholar’s confidence and capabilities with the foundational information to jot down fundamental scripts and full coding challenges. After getting hands-on with some programming fundamentals and intermediate-level ideas, Tekie’s college students are mentioned to have the ability to design algorithms for fundamental assignments resembling programming an elevator, rock-paper-scissors recreation, a calculator, and guessing a quantity, and many others.
We witnessed an introductory class of Tekie to see how precisely the course progresses. A typical class begins with a scholar watching a 12-minute animated video. The video exhibits the protagonist assembly a mystical owl from an alien planet, who tells the protagonist that he’s the chosen one to avoid wasting the alien planet from destruction. The protagonist will get and begins asking questions concerning the alien owl’s superior know-how, which is when the owl introduces them to the idea of programming. The owl attracts an fascinating parallel between the kid’s life and software program programming — like how children observe a algorithm to prepare for college, a pc additionally must observe a sequence of instructions to carry out a activity. To speak these guidelines to the pc, we use a programming language.
After the completion of the video, a chat window seems to assist the learner focus on their learnings. The coed can also be requested questions on these ideas within the additional studying path. All through the course, there’s a instructor who walks the coed by the method and ensures that the idea is known by the kid. The platform additionally has an inbuilt code simulator, workbooks, and initiatives.
Tekie’s reside courses are supplied in a number of variations. Whereas 1:1 courses price about INR 28K (INR 728 per class), 1:2 courses are priced at INR 17K (INR 450 per class), and 1:3 courses at INR 12K (INR 320 per class).
The corporate claims to have 75 paid customers at present, out of which 30% had been acquired by natural referrals and the remainder from Fb advertisements. Tekie’s internet promoter rating (NPS) is alleged to be above 85%.
“We’re the one firm in the entire nation, which doesn’t have a gross sales crew. As a result of, in the event you’re sick, it doesn’t really feel good that folks attain out and give you paracetamol. If somebody wants drugs, they may go to the chemist and purchase. Schooling can also be like that drugs, if dad and mom just like the product, they’ll come again to you,” mentioned Najhawan. The corporate claims to have a conversion price of 25% from its trial courses.
The corporate is now additionally engaged on partnering with colleges who’ve been deeply impacted by the pandemic and at the moment are actively searching for tech options to justify the schooling prices. Different competing corporations like WhiteHat Jr, Tinkerly have additionally tied up with colleges for such programs.
Engineering Graduates As Lecturers
Tekie academics are primarily recent engineering graduates or college students pursuing engineering levels. Najhawan famous that Tekie academics being engineering college students are in a position to provide a sensible image of the course to college students. For instance, Tekie doesn’t promise college students that they may be capable of construct an app in only a week’s time — that may be a plain advertising gimmick, the founding member added.
Like different coding platforms, Tekie additionally operates on a platform mannequin whereby academics are paid on a per-class foundation. Provided that the platform provides three teacher-to-student ratio variations for the reside courses together with 1:1, 1:2, and 1:3, the instructor earnings range from INR 200, INR 250, and INR 300 per class. Additional, for each efficiently onboarded scholar, the corporate additionally provides an extra incentive of INR 1000 to the academics.
“Since mentors are both pursuing faculty or are early graduates, we additionally preserve their timings tremendous versatile, with no set guidelines on what number of courses a mentor must take per 30 days. Thus, with a mean of 4 courses per day, they will count on a month-to-month incomes of roughly INR 25K to 35K,” mentioned Najhawan.
Lecturers can mark their availability on the Tekie app and they’re notified as quickly as a scholar books a slot of their most well-liked time. If the instructor marks that they solely have the capability to deal with 10 children, as soon as they attain this threshold, they will proceed with the courses each week.
When it comes to the working mannequin, the corporate has stored the category timing and frequency versatile and adaptable to the scholars’ wants. On common, the courses vary from 60 minutes to 90 minutes, however the college students have the choice to increase this in the event that they really feel they want extra steerage. Lessons are often scheduled as soon as every week however that will also be modified as per scholar’s want.
“It’s speculated to be an extracurricular exercise, one thing which cultivates a scholar’s persona, by making it an on a regular basis class or one thing — it’s principally pressuring children into one thing which they don’t should be pressured into,” mentioned Najhawan.
The hiring of academics is an exhaustive course of at Tekie with a range price of about 1%. The candidates undergo a number of rounds of analysis, beginning with a check round coding abilities as it’s obligatory to have a powerful command of programming language and its frameworks. Subsequent, the shortlisted candidates are known as for a fast telephonic interview after which they’re requested to ship a 2-min video during which they need to clarify a programming idea. Publish this, the profitable candidates should shadow a few reside periods taken by present mentors, and eventually, they take a few simulated periods to arrange for taking reside periods.
“On the outset, it’s not nearly hiring mentors however extra about onboarding like-minded folks to create a neighborhood that’s actually captivated with instructing college students and who share the identical imaginative and prescient,” mentioned Najhawan.
Going ahead, the corporate will probably be engaged on producing extra academic collection in addition to Python. Nonetheless, animated collection is simply one of many many content material codecs that the corporate provides college students to study programming. Tekie can also be experimenting with loads of different content material codecs like cinematic or live-action movies, creatively designed workbooks, gamification and extra to grasp which is the best method for scholar’s studying course of.
Correction Be aware | 17:13, October 15, 2020
- The web promoter rating of Tekie was erroneously talked about as 20%-30%, it was later corrected to replicate that it’s 85%
- The corporate was launched in July 2020