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Madcap Logic Helps Kids Achieve A New Understanding Of The Visual World Around Them

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Madcap Logic is developing innovative and fun educational products with a vision to re-define art education. “Creativity Express” Suite of apps from Madcap Logic gives all children access to the essential skills developed through exposure to art education.

Below is our recent interview with Elise Ruiz-Ramon, CEO of Madcap Logic:

Q: Madcap Logic educates children in an innovative format, how would you describe Madcap Logic in your own words?

A: Madcap Logic is a forward-thinking company. We’re an education company, a technology company, an online learning company, and now mobile app developers. So we wear a lot of hats (pun intended).

With a name like Madcap Logic it’s clear we are a bit unconventional. We also have a polar bear and two penguin sisters on staff who keep things lively. We’ve created a 16 lesson curriculum that meets the National Standards for the Visual Arts. It holds an ESRB rating of ‘E for Comic Mischief’.

Don’t be fooled, it takes a lot of work to be this creative. We just try not to take ourselves too seriously along the way.


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Q: Your “Creativity Express” Suite of apps has received top 5-star awards from the Educational app store, tell us something more?

A: As newly published apps, the EAS rating is our first award for the mobile platform. However, Our Creativity Express Online curriculum has been winning awards since it was first available in 2006. These awards are not simply for content – the first was the ‘Flash-Forward’ Award for innovative use of technology in animation. The range of awards covers technology and learning, toys, homeschool and, family and parenting seals of approval.

We expect more awards for our mobile apps will follow the EAS rating. It’s wonderful to have the lessons teacher reviewed and given a full seal of approval. We also need to let parents know these apps are very, very fun. That’s the next message we want to get out – don’t be threatened because they’re educational!


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Q: What advantage does Madcap Logic have over its competitors?

A: Animation! It’s a very powerful teaching tool that works with children. Our founders came from the studios of Disney Feature Animation and DreamWorks. Their resumes include work on Disney classics – Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Pocahontas, Mulan, Tarzan, Brother Bear, and Lilo & Stitch. They brought this same ‘magic’ to Creativity Express, both in technical quality and character development. The lesson content is run by our three ‘Art Guides’ – a polar bear and two penguin sisters – with very distinct personalities. These characters were researched and carefully constructed for all children to be able to relate with at least one. This emotional bond allows children to laugh, play, learn, and create.

The Art Guides also allow parents to be ‘hands-off’. The characters lead children through the lessons. Parents don’t need any sort of art background, and we hear they enjoy learning alongside their children.

Q: Why is art a misunderstood subject in education?

A: Art gets bad press. There’s a common misperception that the only children who need it are those who like to paint or draw. Or that it’s technical lessons on paining and drawing. Or it’s a memorization form of art history where you learn to recognize famous paintings.

We live in a visual world. The advent of computers and smartphones has only increased the constant bombardment of visual images children are faced with every day. Yet we don’t teach them how to decode this information. Why do red cars seem faster that blue ones? How do companies package products to appeal to you? Then the obvious, how do you make a powerpoint presentation make a big impact on your teacher so you’ll get a better grade?

At it’s core art is about teaching people how best to express themselves visually. It’s also the only subject that’s about YOU. It doesn’t have to be stuffy, certainly not the way we do it!

It’s also the subject being actively removed from children’s education. Ironically, removing art and music from school doesn’t make parents actively seek them out elsewhere. It’s just the opposite. In doing so the schools have given parents the message that these ’specials’ really don’t matter. If they did, wouldn’t the school have the best interest of their children in mind and include them? Remember it’s STEM driving the curriculum choices, not STEAM.

Q: What are your plans?

A: What do we hear most from parents? My child loved this! Is there more?
This will sound a bit off-key from an education company, but we’re currently working on free apps that are creative games. The idea is for children to take what they’ve learned from Creativity Express and have fun exploring their own individuality. It’s all about self-expression, and of course lots of fun.

Farther ahead, we definitely want our characters teaching a whole new set of lessons. We have a variety of ideas but will likely move away from art. Creativity Express teaches children that it’s not just okay to fail but necessary in the creative process. It’s a lesson they don’t get much in the typical school system. In keeping with this core learning principle a curriculum focused on ‘innovators’ would fit. That’s our thinking for the future.

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