By Nishant Arora
New Delhi, May 21 (IANS) After empowering millions of students in fundamentals of coding globally including in India, live online coding provider WhiteHat Jr. is all set to bring the same expertise of creative curriculum and personalised attention to offer seamless delivery of music classes online, starting with piano and guitar, its Founder and CEO Karan Bajaj said on Friday.
WhiteHat Jr., acquired last year by leading ed-tech firm BYJU’S for $300 million (roughly Rs 2,246 crore), introduced the live 1:1 coding category in India and in just two years, thousands of students from more than 100 countries in the world have signed up for its coding classes.
“The music classes are currently in the beta phase and the initial feedback has been incredibly positive. We plan to offer music trial classes starting May 28 on an invitation basis only, and then launch it commercially in the US and India in June after incorporating feedback from beta testing,” Bajaj told IANS.
“The music curriculum will then be progressively extended to other international markets,” added Bajaj who is a graduate of IIM-Bangalore and earlier served as the CEO for Discovery Inc. South Asia.
The aim, he said, is to help kids with both the academic and cognitive development, within the boundaries of their homes amid the pandemic and the remote learning era.
Like in coding where kids learn by creating their own digital products e.g., animations, games and apps, WhiteHat Jr. is following the same philosophy of learning for online music by creating.
“Kids will learn music by creating their own signature tunes, compositions and albums. It is important to note that no large-scale player has attempted to create their own music curriculum. We see this as a huge opportunity to set the benchmark for online music learning,” Bajaj stressed.
There is also an introductory ‘Discovery’ package of four classes for parents to develop their conviction on their child’s interest in music.
“In this package, we use a child-friendly award-winning audio workstation to learn the basics of music, create different forms of music like classical, rock and pop and build a natural curiosity for taking up instrument learning,” explained Bajaj.
The course fees will be along the same lines as coding and Maths for the 1:1 live classes.
Teachers for online music classes have been rigorously selected based on their performance in five important dimensions — aural, improvisation, sight reading, music theory and performance.
“We are in talks with a top global music institute to introduce certification for our students, but our inherent belief is that the confidence from live performances and creating their own compositions along with the transformational impact of music will far outweigh any potential benefits a certificate might provide,” Bajaj told IANS.
He is excited that learning guitar and piano will now become accessible to millions of kids all over the world, giving them the absolute freedom and creativity in creating music.
Founded in 2018, WhiteHat Jr. has organised 8.5 million cumulative classes globally to date and oner 11,000 teachers are currently busy imparting coding skills in India.
“From academic development to a transformation in self-esteem, learning to create music fundamentally transforms a child’s life. Studies show a remarkable increase in important character traits like grit, confidence and willingness to undertake creative pursuits after students take up music training,” said Bajaj, who has written three bestselling novels: Keep Off the Grass, Johnny Gone Down and The Seeker.
(Nishant Arora can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)