Teach & Share
Teachers Mentoring Teachers
More Then Just Connecting Mentors
We're Connecting Lasting Relationships
Startup Weekend EDU San Jose
- Design a product at a weekend startup hackathon.
- A networking platform that provides recourses by teachers for teachers.
- Match teachers to mentor one another in person or remotely.
Must include features:
- User Profile
- Question Post
- Find A Mentor
- Recommended Resources
- Search Global Resource Data Base
UX/UI Designer and Researcher
3 day sprint
4 Person Team
- 4 person team
- 2 Developers
- 2 Designers
- UX Design & Research
- Surveys 24 Respondents
- 12 Interviews
- IA, Site Map
- Wireframes, Mockups,
- UI designs, Prototype
- Usability Tests
- Affinity Mapping
- Sketch & XD
- Google Forms
Marker, Paper, pen, Whiteboard
- Usability Tests
- Affinity Mapping
- Design Studio
- LoFi Wireframing
- HiFi Wireframing
Teachers lack time for collaboration and need a more efficient way to build inclusive professional learning communities.
Teachers will get a mentor during their first year to help them through their new journey. But 1 year isn't enough because teaching is a life long journey with new challenges that come up every day.
They also want a place safe from administration
Design an easy to use site that enables teachers no matter how long they've been working as a teacher to create meaningful and useful connections between multiple mentors, build communities, share valuable resources on all topics with various content materials.
This will empower teachers confidence with teaching, the ability to organize their curriculum and better help student dealing with challenges and over come personal struggles. Users will be able to easily create valuable content that will help them to learn new skills, follow current and relevant topics, organize academic research, and help them complete tasks.
Discovering the Problem
We conducted user interviews, card sorting, competitor analysis, and market research to identify the needs and uncover common problems.
- Lack of Time - Teachers are busy teaching, hosting after school programs grading papers and supervising students during breaks, they don’t have the time to collaborate with other teachers.
- “Some days, I don’t even see the teacher next door.”
- Lack of Collaboration- There’s not enough time during the day for teachers to collaborate and share ideas. Teachers that specialize in speech therapy or special education especially feel left in the dust since they have a different curriculum and standards from general classroom teachers.
- Need a Support System- Entry-level teachers need a seasoned teacher that will share tips about lesson planning or share their frustrations.
- “The first year of teaching, I didn’t know what to do. I needed a mentor, but our school didn’t offer any.”
- 1 Easy to use and navigate design. "No Bells & Whistles."
- 2 Connect with Mentors with similar interest and complement your learning and teaching needs.
- 3 Simple Categorizing
- 4 All user (teachers) wanted a Desktop and Laptop App and wanted to stay clear of mobile apps.
Strategy and Solution
We focused on a solution to provide a safe online community that connects educators to share their best practices.
Feature and Ideas:
- Share lesson plans by topic and grade
- Share video (10mins. max), pictures and links to trending topics
- Rate and comment on videos, lesson plans and shared links
- Q&A Forum
- Mentor matchmaking
- Follow teachers or categories
- Search topics easily
We tested or prototype with teachers and discovered:
- We need a way to encourage teachers to contribute to the platform and consistently share new materials to keep the platform active.
- Teachers want to save and organize their favorite lesson plans in their personal account.
- Non-tech savvy teachers need a simple UI or a format that they’re familiar with such as Facebook or Teachers Pay Teachers.
Since the primary needs for the users was to get help from one another and finding matching mentors, we thought about how we can use interactions among teachers to fined resources and match mentors with mentees. Each page offers it's own unique features requested by the users while also connecting the AI to improve finding matches and providing easy access to resources for each teachers unique needs. Below are the wire frames for the 5 main pages of the site.
The Question Post page is where teachers can support each other by posting question that other teachers with experience can answer, provide resource such as links and upload material such as lesson plans, presentations, tests, quizzes, study material and media. Each question has it's own section for answers so that it is easier for the teacher to find content. Also the answers can be ranked and the ranking helps with the AI determine suitable mentors.
Mentor Matching shows potential mentors based on question ranking on the Question Post page and comparability from the uses Profile Pages
Recommended Resources . By connecting to their calendar teachers can receive useful material provided days in advance so that they can have sufficient time to integrate it into their lesson plan.
Profile Pages give details bout the teachers personal interest and teaching experiences. This data is also used to help with determining suitable matches for mentors and mentees.
The Resource Data Base provides teachers with even more resources and they can add their own to the database. Resources can be ranked, recommended to peers. Teachers can also linked material directly to their Recommended Resources page.
We decided to create an all-in-one platform that:
- Helps educators find mentors
ects educators worldwide
- Deepens relationships through interest
groups, guest speakers, book clubs, pedagogy parties, etc.
- Promote educator relationships in interactive spaces - chat, video conferencing, forum, etc.
- Gamify by adding badges to motivate teachers to contribute
Below are the 5 main feature pages:
- User Profile, Question Post, Find A Mentor, Recommended Resources, Search Global Resource Data Base
I focused on creating a minimal feel so to not overwhelm the users and make their experience delightful.
Usability Test 2nd Iteration
Users requested a calendar to set schedules, link course materials to due dates, and get reminders.
Besides email users needed a way to communicate with one another.
To keep notifications and other features organized and quickly accessible in one location, I added a notification center at the bottom of the left panel which was open real estate.
Now users could assess their calendar, messages, and customizable notifications in one location by clicking on one of the icons in the footer.
- User badges were implemented into the user and teacher profiles. The visual and back-end algorithm improves matching teachers with mentors
- Connecting teachers and sharing is the main user needs. I included share buttons on all profiles so teachers can recommend and connect peers
Teachers can view your profile and request you as a mentor or protégé.
Find A Mentor
Users data automatically produces Mentor Matching from matching criteria.
- To make searching and retrieving resources I categorized them. Now users can easily go through and pick Videos, Lesson plans, eBooks, etc.
- Similarly I categorized the Recommended Resources by Posts, File types, Photos and Pictures.
Matching your needs are automatically provided through our Recommended Resources and can be set to your daily curriculum or as personal learning tools.
Resource Data Base
Find and share vast resources on course materials to improve your skills and your student's education and engagement in an organized and easy to navigate user interface.
- Previously the Your Profile, Messages and Q&A seen here were together. They felt the Profile icon was enough because it would not be used often.
- Users were confused with both the Messages tab and Replies in the Q&As, So I dedicated User Messaging in the left panel as described above.
Post questions and answers from fellow teachers. You can then rank on how useful the replies are. The ranking gives get points toward badges and improves matching teachers with mentors.
Teacher Share is an advanced social network created just for teachers needs. Teachers can connect, share, create long lasting relationships and support each other from an easy to use platform.
"Teach & Share is the best solution to expand my personal learning network for sharing resources, support one another and matched me with a life long friend and mentor for my growing needs"
- Jessica S
Being an instructor myself I could not help but be empathetic with the teachers I work side by side with to complete this project. Through interviews and user testing I was able to clearly understand the pains and problem teachers were having. The solutions came from the users themselves!
My major role was to integrate the sites pages and design so that is was easy to understand and navigate
A learning experience was on how to deal with the ongoing conflict that was going on with one of the team members. He was not actively listening to the users needs. He was constantly set on his own goals that were not in line with the data based on the users needs or pains. I had to keep reminding the team that the project is not for our needs but for the needs of the users, In this case teachers.
Something I learned right from the beginning as a product designer is "I am not the user" Meaning that not mater how much I want or like an idea or feature, Now matter how right I may think I am, It's not about my needs or what I like or want. It's about the users needs and their experience.