A new startup named Kinspireis planning to make it simpler for parents to find activities to help keep kids occupied — away from a screen.
The app has been launched with hundreds of activities that have been evaluated by parents and teachers alike when the coronavirus pandemic led many families to continue engaging in social distancing, pulling kids off from regular play and other activities. Also,millions of schoolchildren are forced to spend long hours online, engaged in distance learning activities.
For many parents, this quick and dramatic increase in screen time has them looking for alternative ways to keep kids occupied and entertained, preferably offline.
When users first open the Kinspire app, they will see a vertical feed of images, similar to Instagram. But instead of photos or memes, kids and parents can scroll through the activity suggestions to find something fun to do.
Each activity card on the app will feature a photo taken by the Kinspire community, which comprises teachers, activity creators, as well as parents, and caretakers.
Parents are also allowed to filter the suggested activities by age, whether it’s designed for indoors or outdoors, how much parental involvement is needed, activity type, materials needed, and even the mess level involved.
Favorite activities, the users may want to try later, can be saved. As kids complete the activities in Kinspire, they earn in-app rewards as they accomplish tasks like a creative or scientific project, a nature exploration, a pretend play, practicing cooking, music, and mindfulness. Some of the in-app rewards turn into digital character badges. Rewards also deliver printable instructions and encourage children to build origami characters with paper from home.The app also offers the convenience of having the instructions and the materials together in one place.
Kinspire was founded in May 2020, during the pandemic, by a team with backgrounds in tech and children’s play experiences.
The co-founders of KinspireRob Seigel, Dave Tarasi, and Nate Ruiz, have a varied experience at startups like HeadsUp, Nodin, SolidFire, and NetApp. CEO Seigel was previously co-Founder and CEO of HeadsUp, CTO at Nodin, and a software engineer at SolidFire/NetApp, and a dad of two boys.Sara Berliner one of the co-founders of the app is an advisor at YC-backed Hellosaurus, a new interactive video platform, and creator tool. Before Kinspire, she was responsible for co-founding children’s IP studio Star Farm and did a lot more. She’s also a parent of two.
Rob Seigel, PhD, a father of two and Kinspire’s CEO and co-founder said, “We needed Kinspire in our lives as parents, so we built it. Before starting Kinspire, I found it stressful to search for an activity on websites and social media, then pitch it to my kids. Inevitably after all that work, they’d say no. Kinspire is the one-stop-shop where kids can choose what they want to do, not what looks fun to dad.”
The app will help homeschooling kids, remote learners, and any other families who are putting in efforts to come up with new ideas for kids after exhausting so many during the early days of the pandemic.
The startup is currently ready to raise a seed round. Kinspire is available as a free download on iOS and Android in the US and Canada.