As 2018 draws to a close, we want to take a look back at the moments that shaped our company today.
A Growing Community
We kicked off 2018 as one of the first companies to join WeWork Labs, “an invite-only program meant to be an incubator and “launchpad” for startups.” Through this program, we had the pleasure of meeting like-minded entrepreneurs, learning from the big names in the startup space, and working in a collaborative environment that inspired us to do more.
This year, we achieved 10x growth. We are extremely grateful to be working with more families and more little ones, which also means growing the number of educators. We are so proud of the community we built. With their passion and diverse backgrounds, the dreams we have for Dearest and the children become a reality.
Sharing the success with others who believe in what we do has been the cherry on top of this journey. At the start of the school year, we formed a new partnership with Equinox. We are now offering our sessions as part of their Kids’ Club program. We have also extended our services to families in Queens and are now offering preschool classes in ACD Playspace. On top of class offerings, we had the opportunity to collaborate with amazing organizations and companies, such as MomKey, Msterio, Worldwide Buddies, etc. We also started getting featured on shows and other company blogs! Check out these posts on sustainability and Thanksgiving!
Endless Learning Opportunities
In January, we hosted a Global Readiness Workshop that provides cross-curricular applications in language arts, global studies, and geography. Through this, we promoted understanding and interest in other people's customs and cultures. As part of our initiative to promote global awareness, we have partnered with Msterio, a non-profit organization, that aims to connect kids around the world by showing that giving is as great as receiving.
A highlight of 2018 was getting invited to the World Economic Forum. With this year’s theme of “Improving the State of the World,” we are thankful for the opportunity to learn and connect from other innovators and world leaders who share the same mission of making a positive impact through technology and education.
In the summer, thanks to the support from WeWork, students joined us for our first ever pop-up summer camp! The camp was specifically designed for accelerated learners with exceptional literary and mathematical talents. From blasting off to outer space to exploring their taste buds, we curated and designed themed activities for each day for both school-aged and pre-K students.
We believe that even the simplest activities can make the best learning moments. This year, we introduced #LearningByDearest. After countless sessions, classes, camps, and workshops, we started developing more curriculum and sharing activities by our very own Dearest educators!
A Solution for Families in the City
The second half of 2018 was the official launch of the Group Program Marketplace. We are offering a new solution to share high-quality learning experiences with other families in the neighborhood . From in-home preschool to after school pick-up and sessions, we work with families to set up or join the program that comes with passionate educators and a curriculum based on the latest research and top programs in the world. We have rolled out many groups across Manhattan, including 2s and 3s mindfulness art, mixed-aged Mandarin immersion, “STEM for Girls,” accelerated learners group, and many more! Through the marketplace, we provide flexible solutions to modern parents and opportunities for them to invest directly in the learning experiences, without having to pay for the expensive school rent.
All these wouldn’t have been possible without YOU! This is just the beginning. The growth we witnessed this year inspires us to work harder, aim higher, and dream bigger. We look forward to growing more with you and the little ones in 2019!