Jun 10, 2024

AI with Dr. Craig Hansen and Sohan Choudhury, Founder of Flint

Dr. Craig Hansen of the New Zealand Ministry of Education interviews Sohan on the journey of building and implementing Flint in schools, and what's next for the company.

Dr. Craig Hansen, PLD & AI Facilitator at the New Zealand Ministry of Education | LinkedIn

Sohan Choudhury, Co-founder & CEO of Flint | LinkedIn

Video Summary

Sohan Choudhury and Dr. Craig Hansen discuss Flint, an AI-driven tutor platform for education. Sohan provides insights into the company's founding, and emphasizes their mission to address the restrictions on AI use in education and the challenges encountered in gaining school adoption. Sohan then showcases the platform's adaptability and customization options, including its use cases for math practice, student feedback, and language learning. Sohan also details the upcoming launch of a community page where teachers can share and access templates, emphasizing the collaborative and resource-sharing aspect of the platform. (Sourced from YouTube description)

Key points covered include but are not limited to:

  1. Flint's origin story and emphasis on school partnerships (0:28): Sohan explains that the Flint team is young and therefore heavily prioritized iterating their product offerings based on partnerships with schools that were formed very soon after the company was started.

    • Sohan covers how after building teacher productivity tools until mid-2023, he and his co-founder heard firsthand from schools about the need to grant student access to AI. After his childhood public school district in Connecticut took steps to ban access to AI, Sohan firsthand saw the need to present a better alternative to unfettered ChatGPT access for students.

    • Craig asks Sohan about his experience taking Flint through the Y Combinator startup accelerator program. Sohan explains that YC strongly encouraged Flint to prioritize monetization. Sohan goes on to explain how this approach led the Flint team to more closely align with the goals of schools. With a key focus on revenue, the company naturally relied on customers, rather than venture capitalists, to grow successfully.

  2. Live demo of Flint for French and Math subjects (7:08): Craig asks Sohan to give a live demonstration of how the Flint platform works. Sohan starts off by showcasing a French AI tutor example, as world language learning has been a popular use case of Flint.

    • In the demo, the AI tutor speaks to the student in French as if it is a waiter at a restaurant. Sohan plays the role of the student and responds back in French to engage in the conversation.

    • Next, Sohan shows a SAT math example. Here, the AI provides the student with a math problem, and it then also creates a visualization of the problem using a graph to help students understand it better.

    • Finally, Sohan showcases the teacher visibility available in Flint. He shows how teachers can see evidenced-based feedback on a per student basis (strengths, areas of improvement, etc.) as well as summarized insights at the class-wide level.

  3. Flint's approach to serving unique use cases for each school (15:26): Craig asks Sohan about how Flint caters to schools and students with unique needs (e.g. students with dyslexia, or schools with large international student populations).

    • Sohan explains how he views the role of Flint not in prescribing specific use cases of AI for schools, but instead to build and provide powerful building blockers — whether it be multi-lingual support or graphing capabilities — so that schools can use Flint for the use cases that are relevant to them.

    • Some Flint features that Sohan mentioned include data exports, customizability of AI-generated feedback to custom rubrics (e.g. AP, IB, etc.), and the ability for school administrators to view not just usage analytics, but also specific instances of students getting academic support from the AI. All content within Flint is also embeddable, which helps reduce friction in use for students and teachers.

  4. Sneak peak of future Flint developments (18:25): Craig asks Sohan about recent updates to Flint that he's excited about, and about what future developments the team is working on.

    • Sohan shares his excitement about the recently-added image support on Flint. AI tutors on Flint are powered by GPT-4o, and can be easily provided with images of student work via webcam input. Sohan explains how students can hold up a textbook page to have writing or diagrams explained by the AI.

    • Next, Sohan shares how Flint will be adding a community page with templates of AI tutors shared by teachers that have made stellar AI tutors on Flint. Sohan uses the analogy of Canva to explain that Flint has built a powerful design tool for AI tutors, akin to making materials from scratch in Canva. Next, Flint is looking to add the community templates that make tools like Canva so powerful.

This webinar was a part of "AI with Dr. Craig Hansen", a series where experienced educators and innovators share advances in AI. The series covers how businesses, schools, students, educators, parents and teachers can use AI tools to make learning & commerce powerful, personalized, differentiated and meet the needs of staff, customers and neurodiverse students.

Spark AI-powered learning at your school.

Start a trial to get free access to Flint for any number of teachers and administrators at your school.

Watch the video

Spark AI-powered learning at your school.

Start a trial to get free access to Flint for any number of teachers and administrators at your school.

Watch the video

Spark AI-powered learning at your school.

Start a trial to get free access to Flint for any number of teachers and administrators at your school.

Watch the video