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Wildflower Labs

Wildflower seeks to fundamentally transform the experience of being a teacher. We bring together experienced researchers, teachers, and product developers to create groundbreaking technology that captures data on each student's individual learning journey from the physical Montessori environment - all without the use of testing or screen time for children. By enhancing teacher's classroom observation with relevant, actionable data, Wildflower better enables teachers to support each child's growth.

Can we give teachers more insightful and
useful information about the development
of the children in their classroom?

Montessori Environment

 

The Montessori method is a 100-yr
old, research-backed, personalized
educational approach that nurtures
children’s intrinsic love of learning
and internal motivation to reach
their full potential.

Advanced Student Observation Tools

 

Unobtrusive low-powered sensors
and cameras placed throughout the
classroom as well as smart pens and
smartwatches for teachers to
seamlessly capture interactions,
lessons and more.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kinds of information does the system gather?

The system gathers information on what work each student chooses, whether they take it out and put it back themselves, and how long they work with it.

How does it work?

The system uses small cameras on the walls of the classrooms and small location sensors attached to classroom materials and students’ shoes to build a simple map of activity in the classroom and analyzes this activity for the teachers as they plan their support for each child. The cameras also support the school administrators with the purpose of security and understanding what may be happening in the classroom.

Who is developing the system?

The system is being developed internally by Wildflower Schools as part of its commitment to innovation and supporting teachers ands tudents. The Wildflower Schools team is also contracting with Ciholas, Inc.

What kind of cameras are used in the classroom?

We use Raspberry Pi v2 cameras supported by Raspberry Pi 4 single board computers.

What happens to the video captured by the cameras?

The cameras produce 10 second clips of video which are gathered on an Intel NUC computer in the classroom and then uploaded toour secure video server.

Do the cameras produce a live video feed?

No. The cameras do not produce a live video feed.

Do the cameras capture sound?

No. The cameras have neither microphones nor speakers.

What parts of the classroom are captured by the cameras?

We work with the teachers in the classroom to determine the areas of the classroom where children are engaging with educational work and interacting with the teachers and each other. Bathroom areas and any other sensitive areas are specifically excluded.

For how long is the video stored?

The video is now stored and available to teachers for 90 days. We have found this is the most useful as schools do progress reports about every 3 months.

When are the cameras on?

The cameras are scheduled to be on 24 hours per day 7 days a week as they also support the safety and security of the school.

What kind of location sensors are used in the classroom?

We use off-the-shelf location sensors by Ciholas, Inc. These sensors use ultra-wideband technology very similar to Apple AirTags.

What happens to the data captured by the location sensors?

Location and acceleration data from the location sensors is gathered on an Intel NUC computer in the classroom and then uploaded to a secure database.

Are the location sensors safe?

The sensors are fully tested and FCC certified as wearable technology. Total exposure to radio signals from the sensors is thousands of times less than from everyday technologies like cell phones and WiFi routers.

Who has access to the data produced by the system?

The only people who have access to any of the data produced by the system are the small team of people developing the system and the teachers in the classroom.

Is the data anonymized?

As data is gathered, all people (teachers and students) are identified by an anonymous ID. Names and identities of people are stored in a separate table and accessed when the data is displayed so that the teachers can see names in the interface that they use.

How long is the data retained?

The video data from the cameras and location/accelerometer data from the location sensors is retained for 90 days. The information for the instructor becomes part of the academic record of the child and is subject to data retention rules according to their local jurisdiction.

How is the data produced by the system kept secure?

The data in the system is protected by encryption technologies and methodologies that are comparable to Amazon. Data is encrypted in flight as well as at rest in our data storage systems. Standard TLS encryption is employed for all communications between systems.Data at rest uses AES-256 encryption. Access to data is controlled using Auth0 for authentication and a role based access control system for authorization. Direct access to servers, and the data on those servers, is protected by two-factor authentication and cryptographic key based access.

What will happen if there is a data breach?

If a data breach of personal information occurs, our priority is to first secure our operations and prevent additional data leakage. As soon as systems are secured and the breach is understood, we will send notifications to affected parties. At a minimum, we will explain when and how the breach occurred, describe what data was likely taken and by whom, the actions we are taking to address the breach, and steps we’re taking to keep individuals (children in particular) safe. In keeping with best practices, we will work with local authorities as needed.

Have people with access to classroom data been screened?

All team members who will have access to classroom video must clear a background check before they are provided access to the data.

Can parents opt their child out of the teacher observation support program at participating schools? 

Yes! Parents/guardians can always opt-out on behalf of their child.

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