One of the things that I love about blogging is the people and companies that I come to meet. One such business is Matr. Established in 2013 Matr is an intelligent learning platform focused on Maths, with children supported by real, specialist tutors during weekly 1-to-1 tuition sessions. Matr are committed to making Maths tuition available to as many 7 to 11 year olds as possible, and presenting it in a fun and easy to engage manner. Just the sort of approach that I look for when considering extra curricular activities for my boys!
I recently had the opportunity to interview the CEO, Tom, who explains more:
Hi Tom, thanks for joining me today! First things first, why did you decide to start up a business?
I worked as a 1-to-1 tutor and saw first-hand the incredible potential that 1-to-1 has to transform a child’s attitude and attainment. I recognised that 1-to-1 is only available to a very lucky few, leaving a large proportion of children in the UK unable to gain access to it. So it became my mission to make 1-to-1 tutoring accessible to everyone, not just the lucky few.
How did you come up with the name?
Finding the right name was really important to us. Matr has two strengths. Firstly, it embodies our mission statements – Maths matters. Secondly, it is a word which has many positive meanings in multiple languages – translating to the word mother most commonly.
That’s lovely! How long has Matr been supporting children?
We’ve been helping primary school children gain confidence in maths for more than six years now and are the largest provider of online Key Stage 2 maths support in schools. We’ve already taught over 650,000 lessons to approximately 44,000 pupils in schools across the UK…and counting! Now we’re offering our expert and engaging tuition to children and families to enjoy at home.
So who designs the sessions?
Experienced ex-primary school teachers, who use their knowledge to design fun and informative lessons for children aged 7-11. Our team also comprises of parents, school governors and technologists who all understand both the emotional and academic value of 1-to-1 tuition.
What do you hope children will gain from the sessions?
Confidence in Maths, a love of learning, rapid progress and long-term support!
How do you source your tutors?
It’s difficult to become a Matr tutor, we only hire the best. In fact, less than 1% of applicants get through our rigorous selection process. We personally select, recruit and train the best talent from across the globe. Having established a research partnership with the world’s leading teacher trainer organisation – University College of London’s Institute of Education – we, with the help of UCL, can assure you that our tutors receive the best training possible meaning that your child receives top-class tuition.
Who matches the children with their chosen tutor?
Our intelligent software with some help from our Matr support team match the children to their perfect tutor based on their needs.
Can parents be confident that full security checks are carried out?
At Matr, your child’s safety is our highest priority. We have robust safeguarding and vetting procedures in place for our all tutors. We also monitor and record all sessions to ensure your child is in the safest of hands.
How do you measure success? What might that look like?
Through learning objectives, session reports and open-ended questions from tutors. Tutors are trained in a technique called ‘assessment for learning’ which is used throughout primary schools.
I’m making an assumption that parents get feedback on the sessions – how involved are the tutors in providing this?
The tutors are heavily involved. We have built a highly intelligent AI system that, based on the feedback, tailors the subsequent lessons to the child’s progress.
That sounds great! So are there any special requirements that are needed to fully benefit from the sessions?
All you need is an internet connection, laptop/PC and, preferably, a headset with a USB connection. Before every session, you’ll log into your Matr portal and there will be checks on your microphone and headset to make sure that everything is working for a smooth lesson.
What are the next steps for your business?
Ensuring that engaging quality tuition is accessible and affordable for ALL families.
Is there anything else that you would like to tell my audience about you or Matr?
We’re excited to announce the launch of our SATs programme. Based on the skills your child needs for SATs, they will focus on problem-solving and reasoning. The SATs revision programme will be launching in January 2019!
Thank you very much for joining me Tom!
If you’re interested in learning more head over to the Matr website. I have noticed that they even have a fabulous winter sale on at the moment with lessons at a fraction of their normal price! Be quick though – it ends in a fortnight.
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N.B. Please note that this is a collaborative post and that my boys will be trying out the lessons in the New Year. Stay tuned for our honest opinions on them!