HONOLULU – In response to public and private school closures around the globe, the nonprofit Bizgenics Foundation is offering free access to its BizzyB online learning platform for the balance of the academic year. This project-based learning program connects students, parents, educators, curriculum authors, contest producers, education institutions, and employers into an innovation and entrepreneurial online community.
“With our K-12 schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we hope to engage even more students in fun, productive, safe and at-home learning exercises that prepare kids for college and careers,” said Bizgenics founder and chairman Steve Sue. “We’re also happy to run special BizzyB sessions for teachers participating in the Hawaii Department of Education’s Professional Development Training program.”
Utilizing project-based learning, the software differs from traditional curriculum by focusing on hands-on activities that investigate topics based around central themes and questions. Some of BizzyB’s unique features include the ability to compete in contests or hackathons which allow students to generate personal digital portfolios; assessment of students’ 21st Century “soft skills” such as leadership, communication, teamwork and responsibility; and virtual mentoring in real-time.
Design research to date includes studying innovative learning processes with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s LaunchX high school feeder program and with the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Center on Disability Studies. BizzyB will also be used to power the upcoming HIplan Hackathon from April 4-5, 2020. This contest, sponsored by the University of Hawaii at Hilo and Hawaii Community College, will now be run virtually with technology mentors from the east and west coasts of the mainland as well as top-level programmers from a key coding team in Bangladesh working with the teams in BizzyB’s online environment.
Since 2012, Bizgenics Foundation has been dedicated to promoting project-based learning and is most popularly known for its Lemonade Alley youth-entrepreneur competition where participants develop a lemonade business to raise money for a charity of their choice. Bizgenic’s Project Lemon Tree planting program for schools has also gained popularity in its 2nd year with almost 50 schools across the state participating.