Reflection Sciences and Kiko Labs Partner to Pair Digital Tools to Measure and Improve School Readiness

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Reflection Sciences, a education technology company founded by University of Minnesota researchers, and Kiko Labs, the San Francisco developer of Kiko's Thinking Time games, are partnering to provide schools a way to measure and improve school readiness.

We pride ourselves on having the first nationally normed objective measure of EF for preschool children, but caregivers also want solutions they can try to help improve children’s EF skills and prepare them to succeed in school.

Research on school readiness has uncovered a link between the skill-set referred to as executive function and academic success in the early years and beyond. In fact, executive function skills are more predictive of success in school than traditional IQ tests.

What is executive function (EF)? EF refers to the neurocognitive skills that allow us to organize information, focus on tasks, control behavior, and think flexibly. These skills are essential for goal-directed control of attention, thought, emotion, and behavior – in other words, these skills provide a foundation for learning. Though unlike IQ, EF skills can be developed and learned through practice, especially in the early years of development.

The Minnesota Executive Function Scale (MEFS) provided by Reflection Sciences is a scientifically valid and reliable game-like tablet measure of EF for ages 2 and up. It is being used by educators in 32 states to measure growth in EF and the effectiveness of teaching methods, curricula, and interventions.

According to Reflection Sciences’ Co-founder and CEO Stephanie Carlson, “We pride ourselves on having the first nationally normed objective measure of EF for preschool children, but caregivers also want solutions they can try to help improve children’s EF skills and prepare them to succeed in school. I am delighted to be able to recommend Kiko’s Thinking Time games as a natural complement to the MEFS.”

Kiko’s Thinking Time games were developed from a large body of scientific research. Each game is based on a neuropsychological task that is known to have cognitive benefits in lab studies. Kiko Labs turned these tasks into engaging games that children love to play.

The partnership between Kiko Labs and Reflection Sciences serves to provide schools and early childhood advocacy organizations with the tools to practice EF using Kiko’s Thinking Time games and concretely measure EF gains in student populations using the MEFS.

“While EF skills are critical for a child’s success in school, their development is not guaranteed,” said Grace Wardhana, Co-founder of Kiko Labs. “Kiko’s Thinking Time helps support these skills, which are so important to a child’s development and school readiness. We’re delighted to partner with Reflection Sciences to bring a complete solution to schools to help early learners build and measure the foundational skills for school success.”

Learn more about how pairing digital tools can help you measure and improve school readiness for your students.

Visit http://www.reflectionsciences.com to learn more about how you can receive professional development and track EF skills in your students using the MEFS.

Visit http://www.kikolabs.com to learn more about how Kiko’s Thinking Time games can help your students build skills foundational to cognitive learning.

About Kiko Labs:
Kiko Labs worked with neuroscientists from the University of California, Berkeley and Harvard to develop Kiko's Thinking Time, an adaptive training program for early learners, aged 3 to 7. Kiko's Thinking Time uses a suite of activities to target skills foundational to cognitive learning and school readiness: executive function, reasoning, and spatial skills. Learn more at http://www.kikolabs.com.

About Reflection Sciences:
Founded by scientists at the University of Minnesota, Reflection Sciences provides training and tools for assessing executive function. Their Minnesota Executive Function Scale (MEFS) is the first objective, scientifically-based, and normed direct assessment of Executive Function for ages 2 years and up – and it takes less than 5 minutes to complete. MEFS is a fun game for students, but it provides vital data for educators and parents. Learn more at http://www.reflectionsciences.com.

Contact:
Reflection Sciences, info(at)reflectionsciences.com                                        
or
Kiko Labs, support(at)kikolabs.com

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Grace Wardhana
Kiko Labs
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Nicole Stucke
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