Children born into the 21st century do not remember a time before smartphones, the Internet, and video chats with their grandparents.
Young learners can operate a tablet before they learn to walk, their reality growing up after COVID looks much different than past generations.
Young Innovators Academy stands by offering a radically new approach to childcare franchising.
“A new child-care landscape has started taking shape,” explains Marnie Forestieri- CEO and Founder of Young Innovators Academy. “We are entering the new era of innovation and the rapid pace of change will require the next generation to lead the nation through innovation, creativity, critical thinking skills, and collaboration.”
All children are born innovators, explains Dr. Debby Mitchell- VP of Curriculum at Young Innovators Academy. “Our goal is to foster the mindsets needed to succeed in a world of constant change.
Furthermore, our program builds on this foundation to foster the skills, content knowledge, and thinking routines that will help children become the innovators of the future.”
in addition to that, Our proprietary methodology the Innovation Advantage methodology inspires connects, and engages the youngest minds already immersed in a technologically connected world.
The difference can be seen just walking down the halls. Classrooms are designed so students can easily interact, stimulating creativity, sketching new ideas on classroom boards, and creating prototypes in the class’s maker space.
The exploration continues in the Innovation Labs, spaces where students take part in different exploration including a technology & art studio, STEM, and Design Thinking Labs.
Modeled after 21st-century collaborative spaces, such as Apple, Google, and Stanford IDEA Lab, where real employees innovate, design, and engage at Young Innovators preschool and after-school children do the same. Design Projects are shared using multimedia and new technologies, which involve learning early programming and robotics. Among the projects, innovators turn preschool artwork into 3D printing objects to create new toys for children and using their feedback to improve the design.
“At Young Innovators Academy, classes are introduced as “Innovation Parties” using empathy building to solve a real problem for the community” explains Misti Castner, campus director. “A culture of respect of novel ideas, risk-taking, and the freedom to fail is encouraged through music, dance routines and games as the class creates a prototype of a potential product in the maker space turning ideas into tangible products. Once projects are completed, children demonstrate knowledge by sharing with the rest of the school family their ideas using new technologies or presenting to the rest of the class.”
“Becoming an innovative thinker begins with how to teach young learners how to treat people and the environment with compassion, empathy, and dignity,” explains Erika Seger, Chief Operations Officer.” That’s one of the reasons, we are shifting from our original STEM approach to begin learning journeys using design thinking and empathy as a foundation for learning and use science, technology, engineering, and math to solve those problems,” says Seger.
Young Innovators Academy now will continue to expand its innovation-based curriculum program, with the opening of franchises across the United States and international markets announcing the opening of new schools in Orlando, and international schools in the Dominican Republic and Hong Kong.
Franchise Yeti, an outsourced franchise development company, led by industry veterans Brett Larrabee and Stephen Polanski is teaming up with the Young Innovators team. Stephen Polanski, real estate data analytics background brings a competitive edge in all real estate franchising decisions. Brett Larrabee brings extensive knowledge of the franchise industry and is responsible for more than 1,000 franchise sales. Larrabee’s impressive resume includes key roles in the franchise development of Subway, Five Guys Burgers, and Little Caesars.
“The childcare landscape will be very different after Covid,” explains Marnie Forestieri, CEO and Founder of Young Innovators Academy. “During 2020, we carefully crafted our strategy to adjust to the new needs of the market, developed a technology infrastructure to support our growth, introduced a groundbreaking curriculum to infuse the mindsets required to succeed in the future, and gathered feedback from end-users in our beta phase.”
We are intentional about practicing the mindsets and thrive with change. Our team has been innovating for many years, it’s our DNA, we are always looking for ways to improve our previous version. With the rapid pace of change, the key differentiator of an education company is ongoing curriculum development, improving teacher training programs and operational systems. Our biggest differentiator is that everyone in our executive team shares the same passion for consistent product launches and is passionate about helping our franchisees deliver high-quality learning experiences. Young Innovators Academy will focus on delivering services to focus on servicing franchisees.
“Childcare businesses are privately run but accept the responsibility of educating the next generation. We are recruiting mission-driven individuals that understand the importance of high-quality learning, have a growth mindset, and understand the academy’s mission,” explains Donna Carruthers, VP of Innovation. Unlike childcare franchises which have used the same educational approach for the decades and offering real solutions that take years to open, Young Innovators Academy thinks outside the box and offers product-led growth with ongoing curriculum development, a technology platform to deliver content faster, and flexible and simple entry into the market. “
We are entering the age of acceleration. The convergence of uncertainty and complexity demands a response that ignites passion and adapts at a faster and faster pace. Therefore, there will be only one constant element in the organizations and schools of the 21st century: change. Those who are adaptable to change will thrive. Young Innovators is by design built for the age of acceleration and we are ready to take on the mission of inspiring the next generation of innovators.
ABOUT YOUNG INNOVATORS ACADEMY- Young Innovators Academy was founded as Little Explorers Academy in 2015 in Oviedo, Florida, and it quickly became known as a pioneer of early childhood STEM education. The original curriculum was written by Marnie Forestieri and a group of University of Central Florida professors. The Academy started extending its reach by pioneering STEAM and 21st-century curriculum development and products by writing books for national publisher Gryphon House and designing toys for Kaplan Early Learning. In 2019, the school rebranded and started franchising as Young Innovators Academy, offering a radically innovative new approach to empowering young minds, flexible entry into the childcare industry, and technology infrastructure to support its growth.