“Story+Structure is a truly human-centered design firm. We brought them a small prototype in 2009, and they worked tirelessly to help us transform it into a robust web application that now serves over 300,000 teachers each month. All of the designers we worked with were passionate about helping us solve the right problems. They took the time to understand our users—their stories, their personalities, their pain—and this made all the difference. We’ve continued to rely on Story+Structure for various projects, and the results remain consistent half a decade later.” -- Alex Grodd, Founder
For Teachers, By TeachersBetterLesson was founded by a group of teachers from Atlanta and Boston public schools to connect educators and help them create, organize, and share their curricula. They are focused on aggregating and scaling the most innovative content and practices from high-performing teachers across the country.
Story+Structure has worked closely with BetterLesson’s Founder Alex Grodd and his team since 2009, with a focus on user experience, ease of use, and strategic product engagement of the platform.
We worked with BetterLesson to analyze the teachers who use the service to better understand their needs. We found that many teachers are isolated, slightly disorganized, and crunched for time. One of the most challenging tasks teachers face is developing new curricula — units, lessons, and individual files. This is particularly true in an era of school reform aimed at improving educational outcomes.
An Experience that Engages We designed a human-centered information architecture and user experience that enables teachers to discover content quickly and effectively in multiple and varying formats, and to connect with other teachers for support and guidance. We also created an on boarding experience that encouraged teachers to create innovative curriculum and to share their best work with their peers. Teacher engagement — with the resources available on BetterLesson and with other teachers -- occurs through a tightly connected email and web communication strategy.
Our collective goal was to make BetterLesson an indispensable tool that would drive the creation and sharing of outstanding curricula.
As BetterLesson grew, they served as the platform of choice for school reform networks such as New Schools Ventures. We created numerous design iterations that could scale to accommodate BetterLesson’s growth and the needs of their network clients.
From Start-Up to PowerhouseOur work has focused not only on the teachers, but also on supporting BetterLesson in their efforts to seek funding and gain new clients for their platform. We created marketing materials, in-bound landing sites, email marketing templates, print collateral, infographics, and presentation templates. Since our early days in 2009, we’ve seen BetterLesson grow from a start-up to a major player with national clients and Gates Foundation funding.