In The Beginning There Was An Idea
A hallmark of Team Dybuster is that we focus on interacting with teachers, institutions and parents from the very beginning. We can only develop our learning systems with confidence if we are close to the users. In addition to the regular exchange, we can share our experiences from the last 13 years. We are always very pleased to hear positive feedback and success stories from learners. It is our mission that our learning systems help children master the basic skills of writing, reading and arithmetic.
In January 2021, we considered what we could do to bring a little excitement and variety to the school year and especially in these covid times, where we are to avoid contact and keep our distance. In addition to the changes in everyday life, we have perhaps also distanced ourselves mentally from our fellow human beings and the opportunity to master something together is less frequent. So it was clear to us that we wanted to reawaken the idea of community and challenge the classes as a team. After a short exchange in the Dybuster school team, everyone agreed with this basic idea.
Now all that was missing was the appropriate topic, the title of the challenge and the selection of the learning system.
Orthograph Or Calcularis?
The choice was not difficult for us, as we have been working intensively with our Orthograph learning system this year and are working diligently on further development. Our main focus is that the new Orthograph provides the learners with an optimal learning environment to learn the rules of spelling via multi-sensory experiences. In this way, we are pursuing inclusion in everyday school life. Each pupil learns at their own pace and has the opportunity to stay in the respective modules until they have internalised the spelling. If the learners train in Orthograph 2.0 from the age of 6, they will have mastered the rules of spelling by the time they reach 11/12 years of age (Year 7 or 6th Grade), taking into account the curriculum. We decided to select the module “300 most frequent spelling mistakes” for the special challenge during the competition.
There Will Be A Competition In Orthograph - Planning Begins
So the challenge “Dybuster is looking for the most diligent spelling class – the 300 most common spelling mistakes” with the learning system selected, we started planning. In February, we invited around 500 school classes that were not yet using our learning systems. This way, the starting point was the same for all participants and we had the opportunity to get in touch with new schools.
We sent out the invitation by newsletter in mid-February and were positively surprised by the many responses and speedy registrations. Jasmin, head of school counselling and further education, gave the participating teachers an insight into the Orthograph learning system and informed them about the planned procedure in a webinar less than a week before the start of the competition. In this context, the teachers also received a before/after test, which they could carry out with their class before and after the competition. We were particularly pleased that some learners improved by 24% through using Orthograph in such a short period.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank Jasmin for her professional webinars and for designing the training courses and webinars in a way that makes it easy to understand Calcularis and Orthograph. Thus providing users with the necessary skills to make the best use of our programmes.
After we had completed the preparations successfully and, above all, on time, the starting signal for the 5-week competition was given on 15 March. A big thank you goes to our lead developer Felix, who took care of our “spontaneous” ideas at all times despite his busy schedule. For development and programming, it is not always easy to respond to the “it would be cool if we….” ;).
The Competition - Amazement At Dybuster Begins
On 16 March, one day after the starting signal, we received the first call from a teacher with the news that her student could not work in the module. After a short check, we were surprised to find out that she had already finished the module because she was already training so intensively on the first day. We were very amazed as this absolutely exceeded our expectations. We had not expected so much effort. So the students needed more food! With a smile, we also activated another course with 8,000 words. Here too, most of the classes were very committed and it was a neck-and-neck race for a long time. Above all, we were amazed that most of the learners worked with such concentration. With the help of the coach function, the learning behaviour of the students can be viewed in detail by the teacher.
On 16 April, the participating classes crossed the finish line. We made adjustments to ensure that the competition was equal (due to the holiday periods), we took the best 3 weeks of the 5 competition weeks for evaluation. The winning class 5b of the primary school Birmensdorf, led by Mrs. Daniela Mettler, deservedly won with a total training time of 258.5 hours. On 20 May, we were able to congratulate the class personally and hand over the prize, a contribution of 500CHF to the class treasury. The winning class and places 2 – 6 also got to use Orthograph in full until the summer holidays in 2021.
The highest training time of all 1,000 students
Matteo, a pupil from class 5c of the primary school Rüschlikon, broke all records with a training time of 44 hours and 26 minutes!
We would like to thank all the children and teachers for taking part and for their commitment during the competition.
Did the competition bring excitement, variety and team spirit to your school day? What it has certainly brought is that some of your usual spelling mistakes are no longer there.
For all the teachers who did not enter our competition, this little review may have whetted your appetite to take part in a future competition.
Your Team Dybuster