Summertime means testing time for those teams wanting to grab input from educators. Thinking, planning, and designing systems to increase the use of digital learning resources and enabling educators in sharing how they create richer, more equitable, and differentiated classrooms for students is our passion.
Therefore, we typically contact educators just as the school year concludes. The idea is to plant the seed of what is to come by briefly introducing the nature of our projects, the resources being developed, and what we hope to accomplish. We don’t impede between them and their summer plans however; we just frame the ideas and then off they go to their much-deserved family trips, solo adventures, or to tackle a long-neglected home project. We in turn finalize development through June and conduct internal Alpha testing and begin staging to catch those same educators for Beta testing as they begin to trickle back to their regular day to day lives late July through August.
This means, we are right now in the midst of moving systems into Beta staging at Navigation North in anticipation of two huge platform launches later this summer. Working to get product executed and shipped in advance of schools starting back up in August makes for both an exciting and chaotic work environment, as our own staff gears up to introduce new tools, features, and designs to awaiting client teams and their stakeholder groups. Where white-board drawings, concepts, storyboards, and early stage mockups once dominated our space, we now refine interfaces, tools, and verify data-structures and resources integrated throughout our new platforms.
With ample time spent in both Discovery and User-Centered Design phases, the hope is to validate structural, feature, and user experience decisions formulated over the last 6 – 10 months. However, where changes need to be pursued, the testing regimens and user-findings will help us to make final adjustments to hone more effective and efficient delivery of resources, programs, and services for educators across the country.
Without exposing too much of the upcoming releases, we wanted to share how very excited we are about these new products coming out this summer on behalf of our client-partners.
Just through our own internal testing, with many of us being former educators, we can readily see how these projects will promote increased use of exemplary digital learning resources across many, many classrooms. We are now keenly focused on the open beta engagements as we head into the first 4-6 weeks of introducing these new systems to the targeted teacher teams who will help us further analyze and refine the tools, resources, and features we’ve been researching and designing over this last year.
When it comes to helping thousands and thousands of educators document, share, and refine their instructional practice in open, collaborative online communities…Navigation North is laser focused on what it takes to help our partners achieve desired outcomes. Another exciting and rigorous summer of development and testing has begun, and we look forward to sharing the results in the coming months.
As with all projects we sign on to, the sites and their resources will be open and free to use by any educators and students, schools and community groups, and anyone else interested in promoting learning and growth. Let us know if you’d like to know more by contacting us directly.