Reflecting on Math Mate's First Year

With 2018 rapidly coming to an end, I took a moment to look back at what we did in our first year working full time on Math Mate.

Lachy Fitzpatrick
Co-founder and CEO

Our first year here at Math Mate has been a rollercoaster. They say that building something from the ground up is one of the hardest things to do and I definitely don’t disagree. But it is also one of the most rewarding and I can honestly say that I am proud of what we have achieved thus far. We’ve come a long way since launching Do Math Good at the start of 2018 so here’s a recap!

River City Labs Accelerator
October 16 2017

Math Mate, Vygo, and HyraIQ teams after announcement that Math Mate and Vygo had been accepted into River City Labs

Ok technically this wasn’t 2018, but receiving investment and support from Steve Baxter’s River City Labs Accelerator was a milestone late last year that really set the tone for 2018. Steve is one of the sharks off Channel Ten’s Shark Tank and an allround QLD legend. The accelerator is one of his ways of investing in early stage startups, offering them guidance, mentoring and support when getting started.

Do Math Good Launch
January 16

First iteration of Do Math Good app

We kicked 2018 off at a cracking pace, launching our first app Do Math Good. The original version featured just 5 levels and a final challenge that ranked you against everyone else that played.

First Pilot School Onboard
February 14

St Luke's Anglican School logo

Through a teacher PD event at QUT where we presented our story as mechatronic engineers turned entrepreneurs, we met two maths teachers from St. Luke’s Anglican School in Bundaberg who were enthusiastic about the ways Do Math Good could be used in the classroom. Not long after, we proudly brought St Luke’s onboard as our first pilot school.

Expanding Do Math Good
February 22

Video of updated Do Math Good app

A week later we had also released an updated app that had over double the content in it from the initial launch. Now sporting 16 levels, there was no shortage of algebra problems for students to sink their teeth into.

Introducing Balance Mode
April 24

Video of balance mode showing a student solving an equation

2 months later a world of change had run through Do Math Good. We had built a teacher dashboard, there had been a visual upgrade and the content had continued to expand to over 40 levels not to mention the addition of on-demand tutorials and hints for students. Our favourite inclusion was Balance Mode, a new set of levels where students can solve problems using the balance method. #nixthetricks.

Manic Math
June 6

Photo of class playing Manic Math

In one of our testing sessions at a school, we witnessed an awe inspiring phenomenon. Students literally jumping out of their seats to learn. This was, of course, our first introduction to Kahoot!. Inspired by the power of social gaming in education, we set out to bring that same excitement to maths. One rapid prototype later, Manic Math was born on June 6. Although its use has been restricted to conferences and a few lucky classes this year, we will be giving free access to this Manic Math at the start of 2019, so stay tuned!

June 7

Photo of Math Mate founders at EduTech

No rest for the wicked! The very next day we were down in Sydney for the massive EduTech conference. We checked out all of the other cool things going on in the EdTech space and showed both Manic Math and Do Math Good off to teachers interested in thoughtfully integrating technology to enhance their classroom experience.

Ignite Ideas Grant
August 9

Image of Advance Queensland and Queensland Government logo

One of the highlights of the year was being awarded the Ignite Ideas Grant by the Queensland Government to expand our apps’ reach in to regional Queensland. The grant was worth $100k and secures the financial future of Math Mate for 2019 while we focus on setting ourselves up for long term impact.

MANSW Annual Conference
September 14

Image of the poster for MANSW

Another highlight of the year, was travelling down to the MANSW Annual Conference in Wollongong. Not only were we given the opportunity to present to teachers on the power of video games in maths education, but we also got to hear from and chat with two superstars in maths education, Dan Meyer and Eddie Woo.

Do Math Good Web Version
September 24

Screencapture of Do Math Good app on the web

In response to popular demand, we released Do Math Good onto the web to give both students and teachers easier access to the app.

St Luke's Visit
October 19

Photo of Math Mate founders presenting at St Luke's Anglican School

Having successfully completed our pilot with St Luke’s we were honoured to be invited to present at their Entrepreneur’s Day in Term 4 to their high school students. It was a delight to meet the students in person who had been amongst our first serious users and a pleasure to support the first class work exposing students to entrepreneurial mindsets at St Luke’s. We are very excited to be working with St Luke’s again in 2019!

Testing New Features
November 1

Screencapture of Do Math Good app on the web with a test feature

Starting in November, we worked with our partner schools to test out some new features that may help improve the learning outcomes for students. These include:

We’ll be sharing more about what we learnt from the tests and including some of these features into our apps in 2019, so stay tuned for those too!

STEM in Education
November 21

Photo of the attendees at STEM in Education

To cap the year off we presented at the 5th International STEM in Education conference at QUT. What a way to finish!

And that's a wrap for 2018!

Photo of Math Mate team hiking

The Math Mate team treating ourselves to a Christmas hike.

What a year it has been. I am so proud of the team and what we have achieved. 2018 has been a year of learning, exploring and building, and with such a strong foundation laid down, 2019 will undoubtedly have exciting things in store.

We’d love to say thank you to all of the parents and students that we’ve worked with and for the support we’ve received from our advisors and the wider Brisbane startup ecosystem.

And of course above all, the biggest thank you goes to the teachers we’ve had the opportunity to work with and the amazing job you do day in day out.

We can’t wait to continue into 2019 to build resources that support you doing what you do best, sharing the magic of learning maths with students! Until then, stay safe and enjoy your Summer breaks...

Rest assured that we’ll be in the trenches this Summer working towards the exciting things we have planned for you in 2019 😃

Photo of Math Mate team working