Tonguesten is a small education technology start up company. We have been using natural language processing and original artificial intelligence to create unique tools for English language learning since 2012. To do this, we bring together some of the latest research in education, psychology, machine learning and corpus linguistics. We have created our own engine driven by our artificial intelligence. This drives our innovative software that merges popular media content (e.g. music videos, cartoons, movies) with English spelling, punctuation and grammar topics, creating automated, real time and intelligent language games to improve users’ English while they play.
Our primary mission is to make English language learning and literacy fun, easy and accessible to everyone. We don’t think that any child should leave school unable to read, or that learning English as a foreign language should only be available to those who can pay for it. We also want every learner and every teacher to understand that language and literacy skills develop through exposure to that language in context, and that students learn best when they’re interested and enjoying themselves. Our tech is unique but based on solid pedagogical research. We’re therefore focused on continual development, trialling and feedback of our software and we’re always looking for educational and funding partners to help us take it to the next level.
We think that English language educational content is often boring and irrelevant to students, and that’s why many give up, don’t want to practice or aren’t interested in learning. Why plough through boring grammar exercises when you can use your favourite video content - which you already watch for fun - to play language games, so that you learn without even realising it? Our team all speak multiple languages, so they know language learning inside out. We’ve also got expertise in technology, teaching, high level research and music. We are masters at creating innovative ways to use technology and existing music, cartoon, film and TV content to create automated language games, with software that can also track progress and assess as students go along.
Tonguesten won a Digital Innovation Award and initial funding to design and construct a demo product - the first version of our music video English language game, which would later become ReBeats. Developed in collaboration with Hat Trick Productions (2013).
Smart is a grant scheme which offers funding to small and medium-sized enterprises to engage in R&D projects in the strategically important areas of science, engineering and technology, from which successful new products, processes and services could emerge. We used this funding to develop Rebeats, which was software for learning English as a Foreign Language. It was developed in collaboration with research from International House, University of Sheffield and University of Cambridge and based on robust Indian pedagogical research by Planet Read.
Following stiff competition and a singing pitch in the final, we were selected as one of the UK’s most exciting up and coming tech startups, winning a place in the prestigious Wayra academy, which is supported by O2/Telefonica and UnLtd. We concentrated on trialling and refining ReBeats with students around the world and gained over 5k teacher and student users in 3 months.
The Fast Growth programme works in partnership with Santander, The Cabinet Office and the Millennium Awards Trust to fund entrepreneurs to scale social ventures.
Selected as one of 20 start ups to receive funding by Innovate UK to develop Engage. Engage is a version of our software that was specifically designed to help UK primary school children improve their literacy attainment, and particularly those children that experience either social disadvantage or are not native English speakers. Engage is much more detailed web application that is mapped onto the SPAG (spelling, punctuation and grammar) components of The New Curriculum so that teachers can use it to teach their pupils all the SPAG topics required for their SATs and for automated assessment.
Contact us to find out how we can help you.