The Art of Education: Q&A with Amutha Saravanan of Da Vinci Group on Neuroeducation.

Neuroeducation is a field of study that combines neuroscience, psychology and education to understand how the brain optimally learns.

This involves understanding how neural networks are created and strengthened by associating information gathered from our five senses in our environment to content.

Da Vinci Group (DVG) was founded in 2012 and is a premium educational and training services provider, whose mission is to stimulate creativity and productivity through the concept of Neuroeducation using pottery as a platform.

LadyBoss spoke to Amutha, co-founder of Da Vinci Group on her entrepreneurship journey.

Q:Tell us about Da Vinci Group.

A: At Da Vinci Group, we believe that each individual has a right to actualise his/her potential. We possess the know-how to stimulate and foster creativity through marrying cutting edge neuroscience and psychological findings with the ancient art of pottery.

Working with clay is a hands-on experience that engages the senses, creates emotions, stimulates creative expression and heightens awareness. Pairing such a medium with learning creates an engaging play-based experience, which stimulates abstract thinking, problem solving and creativity.

We have created NeuroCeramicsbased on this concept where we use pottery as a platform to engage children, teens, adults and the elderly.

Our mission as a premium educational and corporate training services provider is dedicated to cultivating and nurturing creativity in a competitive and globalised world.

As we move from the Information to the Conceptual Age, being innovative is of utmost importance to increase personal brand equity, remain productive and drive growth.

Q:What were you doing before entrepreneurship? 

A: I did psychology for my bachelor’s degree and then went on to do a masters in psychology by research where I did my thesis on a topic in clinical neuropsychology.

I started working with SingHealth, but left soon after wanting to learn a different skill set in the business world. I joined Egon Zehnder, a senior level executive consultancy doing research just before entrepreneurship.

Our curriculum is developed to expose children to multiple concepts and to enhance their tactile cognition. The ceramic products created through our curriculum serve as trigger points for children to remember the concepts introduced.

Q: What makes Da Vinci Group’s training approach unique, especially by combining the arts and neuroscience? 

A: NeuroCeramicsR  and NeuroTheatre

Creating pottery is a hands-on experience that engages emotions and stimulates creative expression. We have created NeuroCeramicsR based on Neuroeducation where we use pottery as a platform to engage children.

Our curriculum is developed to expose children to multiple concepts and to enhance their tactile cognition. The ceramic products created through our curriculum serve as trigger points for children to remember the concepts introduced.

Why we choose clay:

a) Highest tactile cognition factor

b) Object permanence

c) Longevity

Acting is an art form that engages multiple senses. NeuroTheatre is a curriculum that is developed based on process drama. Process drama is a method of teaching and learning drama where both the student and teacher are working in and out of role.

We introduce various concepts to children through our carefully crafted drama scenarios and enable them to proactively challenge their thinking and express the concepts.

14606269_1177712502265802_3069591159050352266_n

We also use NeuroCeramicsR  innovatively in our consultancy work with corporates under our Da Vinci Consultancy pillar. For corporates we conduct special professional development programs using an inquiry-based method rooted in Neuroscience and Neuroeducation.

Da Vinci Group has designed and devised a new methodology in the principles of neuroeducation, the Box of InnovationsTM to engage working professionals. Our program Box of InnovationsTM operates in 4 distinct areas of professional development.

We look into Leadership, Sales, Productivity & Creativity and Management Performance, all customisable according to what our clients’ needs are. The heart of this work lies in making relationships work in the work environment and a commitment to not lose the human touch in what we do.

Q:Who is your target audience? 

A: At this point, children from 18 months all the way up to 12, teens from 13 to 18, adults and the elderly, so anyone from 18 months to 96 years old, or older!

Q: In terms of sales & marketing, how do you reach your customers, and what works?

A: We have a multi-prong approach. We cold call, we network, we email, we visit our clients, we very rarely advertise.

What has served us well is word of mouth marketing and we build on the relationships we have. We speak powerfully to make a difference to our clients and really get what their needs and concerns are.

Q: How many people are you managing in your team?

A: At present, 12 people.

We are going global. We’ve created a new product that can be shipped to any region in the world

Q: Where do you see the future of Da Vinci Group? Ultimately what is your vision for the company?

A: We are going global. We’ve created a new product that can be shipped to any region in the world.

KlayKitsTM are the future of NeuroCeramicsR to children and families throughout the world. We developed KlayKitsTM to expand our regional presence and our brand name in various countries before having a physical entity in them.

KlayKitsTM is applicable to children from 18 months to 7 years old and the elderly. Markets we are looking at to distribute KlayKitsTM are Singapore, Jakarta, Myanmar, Vietnam, Japan and Australia at this point.

We aspire to open the DVG Academy that will encompass many platforms that are suitable to apply Neuroeducation principles too.

This academy will also be pivotal to collect local data in the field of study of Neuroeducation to capitalise on how the brain optimally learns and in the process of it all hone abstract thinking and problem solving skills.

Also we have started the, Da Vinci Foundation.

It is our declaration to touch the lives of children in a way conventional teaching methods are unable to. Neuroeducation uses tenets in neurobiology and psychology to explain how engaging more than one of our senses while processing or learning new information can help to strengthen our neural networks to be more creative and efficient in solving everyday tasks. This campaign is a manifestation of our conviction to inspire children.

Through this campaign, for every five children who go through our programme, we are committed to sponsoring one child from an underprivileged background to experience a session of NeuroCeramicsR.

We want to make quality education accessible to children from ALL walks of life. We aspire to raise awareness of Neuroeducation in Singapore and give children a greater exposure to brain-based teaching methods.

We have started collaborating with corporates to sponsor beneficiaries for our NeuroCeramicsR programme.

Finding and managing the right people who believe in the business, our vision and will go the distance with us is challenging.

Q: Tell us about your Number 1 business challenge? 

A: Scaling with quality. Ensuring that our people are equipped to deliver our programme with quality and understand the business well is something that we hold in very high regard.

Finding and managing the right people who believe in the business, our vision and will go the distance with us is challenging.

I am very thankful, grateful and blessed to have my current, amazing A-team.

Q: As an entrepreneur, what motivates you personally? 

A: Making a difference to people through the work I do, by actualising their potential.

We stand for people to live fulfilling, happy lives.

Q: What would be your advice for aspiring women entrepreneurs? 

A: Take it as it comes, your dreams and passion do not need to be sacrificed in place of caring for your family.

Find workability such that everything flourishes. It can be done.

Written By

This article was written by the LadyBoss team. Want to be a contributor? Drop us an email at editor@ladyboss.asia

Leave a Reply