Planet Spark: Transforming Tuitions Through Game-Based Learning

Kunal Malik & Maneesh Dhooper, Co-Founders
Kunal Malik & Maneesh Dhooper

From newsrooms to stand-up comedy stages, from social media to private drawing rooms, and from office cubicles to policymakers' chambers – India's education system provides steady fodder for intense deliberations to every platform imaginable. Its deficiencies are many and obvious. No wonder then that millions of students turn to private tutors to augment their learning. Tuitions which are known for boring teachers, uninteresting content and forced studies.

If children go to a tutor an hour a day, why not make sure that they receive world-class learning in an engaging and effective way right in their neighborhood? After all, most unorganized sectors in India are being reformed by professional players, and education has remained a defiant holdout for the longest. Thus, Planet Spark was born!

The Missing Piece in Learning
So, what was the missing piece in the puzzle? Kunal Malik, Co-Founder, Planet Spark, explains “Till now, everyone has been using adult learning principles to teach children. A typical technology app has a series of videos and some
questions to solve. At Planet Spark, we talk to children in the way they love the most–through stories, games and immersive environments”.

"We have a library of 280 scientifically designed, school aligned and highly engaging workbooks that help children to practice and learn in a structured manner"

Each concept at Planet Spark is designed using stories and themes. The child starts learning by playing an immersive game on a topic. Games are not only fun, they also do not have stigma attached towards failing. This means that the child can be guided again and again until she masters the concepts. After this, a child watches a video of an adventure of our main animated character, Captain Spark, and observes him using mathematics along his journey.

But can an app alone solve the problem? “We believe that only an app or only a workbook will not solve the problem. That is why Planet Spark follows a ‘blended learning’ approach. We have a library of 280 scientifically designed, school aligned and highly engaging workbooks that help children to practice and learn in a structured manner,” says Maneesh Dhooper, Co-Founder, Planet Spark.

Kunal & Maneesh were hostel neighbours at XLRI, Jamshedpur. They went-on to pursue successful careers at Unilever, and Novartis Switzerland and UrbanClap, respectively. The duo wanted to start their own venture and found the opportunity in the education
sector. They could see that the market was flooded with content, but hardly anything was designed to serve the need of a young child. The duo believes that combining games-based learning, storytelling videos and extensive workbooks provide complete learning solutions for children.

New Age Learning Appeals to Children & Parents
“Today, parents are aware of the benefits of technology – they book cabs, order food and buy stuff online using a host of mobile apps. They also do not want to send their child to a local tutor. Instead, they want to rely on credible and engaging programs which build critical thinking and problem-solving abilities. That is where Planet Spark comes-in,” says Kunal.

“We are using technology to build the learning centres of tomorrow. Our teachers run the entire learning centre using our mobile app. The entire journey from onboarding, marketing, attendance, learning and fee collection is driven through our technology, thus making this model extremely scalable. “We also have an app for the parent to get the entire learning content and performance analytics at their fingertips,” says Maneesh.

Growth Plans
After receiving rave reviews from customers, the team now plans to enter every locality in Delhi NCR in this academic year. It also has plans to expand its offering to more subjects and enter new cities in the following academic year. Planet Spark is surely on a quest to spark the joy of learning!