Mash&Co launches app in the Philippine market aims to provide educational content for preschoolers focusing on values and key 21st-century skills
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the demand for edtech solutions in the Philippines to address the needs of schools, administrators, faculty, learners, and parents and create a learner-friendly experience for blended learning. A key component of the digitalization of education and education systems is content creation, creating engaging, child-friendly content addressing the evolving needs of Filipino children.
A forward-thinking approach to edtech led entrepreneurs Vincenzo Merenda and Katrin Ann Orbeta to create Mash&Co, a startup and production company focused on conveying values through positive communication and creating transmedia experiences for preschoolers.
“Mash&Co aims to use interactivity, storytelling, and gamification to introduce preschoolers to important values and concepts such as social inclusion, cultural heritage, ecology, empathy, and diversity and help younger children start to build key skills such as creativity, collaboration, and critical thinking,” shared Mash & Co. Founder Katrin Ann Orbeta.
Orbeta, who is of Filipino descent, wanted to bring the company and their app to the Philippines to share the engaging, educational experience with more young learners and their families. Mash&Co’s content can be delivered through various systems and devices, from TV, the web, its app, and even consoles.
Inspired by the Montessori and Reggio Emilia approaches, Mash&Co collaborates with educators and child psychology experts to ensure that their content is safe and kid-friendly, while being mindful of digital wellbeing.
“Our app has no dialogue or voice-overs. The absence of typical gaming elements and dynamics encourages children to explore the stories and mini-games. In our interactive cartoons, we enable the microphone to encourage children to unleash their creativity by telling their own stories based on the scenes that they see,” shared Mash&Co Co-Founder Vincenzo Merenda. “Moreover, the app allows parents to monitor children’s progress based on their playing performance. The special control panel on the app does not show any grade to the children but enables parents to understand their progress and aptitude in key cognitive skills such as interaction, coordination, and recognition.”
Mash&Co’s app will be available in Google Play Store in the Philippines starting October 22, 2020. Merenda and Orbeta hope to link up with education and child psychology experts, educational institutions, and other partners as they build and grow their Philippine operations.
Their startup has already started to make waves internationally, with the Europe-based team securing funding from organizations such as French Tech Ticket, Microsoft, and Telecom Italia and distribution from IGroup Korea South Korea. Mash&Co is also a recipient of the Digital Ehon Award, an award given by the Digital Children’s Book Fair, a leading international children’s book fair in Japan. The Digital Ehon Award is a digital children’s book award and is given to exciting digital productions to encourage new digital expression methods for children. The Mash&Co. app has also been downloaded 250,000 times outside of the Philippines.
“We believe that storytelling and interactivity can create a more engaging and more effective learning experience. Our goal is not just to create content, but to help young children understand their emotions, their community, and their role in society,” said Orbeta. “With Mash&Co, we aim to help parents and schools instill a strong foundation in young children so that tomorrow’s leaders can create a better world.”
For more information on Mash&Co, you may find them on Facebook at Mash&Co Philippines or contact them through email@example.com.