Seeking Meaningful Ways to Engage Your Kids? Meet Andy Zurcher, Co-Founder, Kidiosity: Interview by Robin Gorman Newman, founder, (Two Months Free Opportunity)


Kidiosity is such an interesting name.  Can you explain the inspiration Kidiosity is a mashup of Kids and Curiosity.  The inspiration comes from our kids, and all of the wonderful attributes that come from having a curious mind.  How different would the world be if we, as grown-ups, were able to maintain the innocence of youth and the sense of wonder that children possess?  Kidiosity is a tribute to that sense of wonder we hope to cultivate in our children.

What exactly is Kidiosity?  Kidiosity is a new iPhone app and a website created to help strengthen families and better prepare children for success in life.  Every week, we share unique ideas for parents to spend quality time with their kids.  It’s hard to always know how to engage children, so we supply a dose of inspiration along with the instructions you’ll need. Parenting is hard enough, so we want to make it easy by providing visuals and step-by-step instructions with every suggested activity.

We really like the education and discussion topics that accompany the activities, too.  So while you’re spending quality time with your kids, you have the opportunity to illuminate “lessons” or engage in meaningful conversations. In fact, each day, Kidiosity provides a new conversation starter.  We hope parents will spark discussion at the dinner table, or while driving across town, or when putting the kids to bed.

What was the motivation to launch the company? The company was started by myself and my co-founder, Will Giuliani.  We are both parents, and have six children between us.  Like most of us, we found ourselves caught up in our phones, and the hectic schedules and general craziness of life.  We realized that one of the first things to fall off the plate was the intentional, quality time with our kids.

Did you know that 8 out of 10 parents feel like their kids are growing up too quickly, and 7 out of 10 constantly worry that they’re not creating enough lifelong memories with their kids?  We decided to do something about that.  We thought by making it easier, and delivering ideas and discussion topics right to the mobile device of a mom or dad….or even a grandparent, nanny or babysitter…we could help to create a deeper connection with our kids.  In essence, we wanted to use technology…to reduce our increasing dependence on technology. 

Who comes up with the Kidiosity activities, etc.?  We have a small team who works together to produce new, often thematic, activities each week. The team is made up of people with a passion for fostering togetherness and child development, and who are moms and early childhood educators, with degrees in psychology, sociology, social work and child welfare.

How long did it take to create the app, and what additional features do you hope to include as it evolves? Kidiosity was started in September 2020, and the app launched in January.  I say “launched” in airquotes becuase it’s far from a finished product…in fact, it never will be.  Our mindset is to continue to evolve based on what we hear from our customers.  We’re always looking for ways to facilitate quality time between parents and their children.  In terms of near-term features, we are working on “collections” of activities that are grouped together so that kids can complete them to earn a reward.  Think of a group of activities grouped around a character trait (like kindness), or a particular interest (like drawing).  We also think a lot about providing timely reminders and communications to meet our parents where they are.  One mom recently mentioned that she would love to receive the daily conversation starter just before she picks up her daughter from daycare, so she could use it to inspire conversation on the way home.  That’s the type of feature we’re looking forward to building. 

 You had mentioned the desire to inspire community involvement thru the app.  Can you share a bit about that? Nothing firm yet, but we think there are opportunities to suggest activities that go beyond just doing things together at home.  For example, we might suggest activities that are done for others — perhaps creating a bag of supplies for the homeless in your community.  What a great way to model selflessness and teach our kids about the importance of positively contributing to the broader community.  

What has the response been thus far to Kidiosity? Well, it’s very early, but we’ve gotten some great feedback.  I love hearing from moms who sit down with their kids and go through the weekly suggested activities…looking at the pictures and choosing the ones they want to do.  What a great way to be present together.  Also a few moms have shared that their children greet them in the morning with “what activity are we going to do today, mom?”  And perhaps my favorite note (because I can relate) came from a dad last week:  “My wife went camping this weekend. This app is a lifesaver. My son’s entertained and I look like dad of the year.” 

What is the cost of Kidiosity? The Kidiosity app and website have just launched, and are offered at $2 per month for an annual subscription.  However, because we hope to get as much feedback as possible from our early users, we are offering a free month’s subscription to all of your readers who register with this link.  In fact, for any of your readers who do provide feedback, we’d be happy to offer a second month free. 

You and your wife have four kids, and some of them you had when you were over 35.  What has is felt like being a later in life dad? I just turned 50, so I needed another reminder of my advanced age…thanks, Robin 😃.  In all seriousness, being a dad (at whatever age) is the greatest blessing.  If there’s a list of the best ways to stay young, having kids should be towards the top.  To see the world through their eyes, and experience their ups and downs as they grow through the “first time” doing everything…it’s really awesome.  So as a later in life dad, I suppose it feels like I am able to appreciate all of that a little bit more.  

What have you learned from your kids, and what do you most hope to teach them? My kids teach me things all the time.  To watch how they engage with technology, and interact with their friends, and follow their interests…it’s pretty cool, and it’s taught me a lot about the next generation.  My oldest left for college this past year, and is now in Central America doing mission/ministry work.  She has taught me a lot about faith and following one’s passion.

As for what I hope to teach them, I just want them to be authentic, good people who genuinely care about others.  There’s a lot of “look at me, look at me” in today’s world, and I most hope that my kids grow up to be comfortable with who they are.  I want them to be motivated purely by the goodness of an action…not by the opportunity to post that action on social media to gain “likes”.     

What do they think of Kidiosity? They love the idea, and aren’t shy with their critique of Kidiosity’s Instagram page, or social media presence.  It always makes me laugh…and learn.  They’re a bit older than our target audience, so they aren’t afraid to roll their eyes when I bring up a conversation starter or another opportunity to point out a “life lesson”.  But then they participate in the conversation, and usually I walk away learning more from them, than they from me.  

Do you find it challenging to balance work and fatherhood? Yes and no. As you might expect, when you’re trying to start a company, it can mean long hours and a never-ending list of “to-do’s”.  But there’s never a question about priorities…fatherhood & family are always number one.  Will and I work hard, but if anything comes up in either of our families, that always takes precedence.  And if helps that I have an amazing wife, who’s puts everyone else’s needs before her own and keeps the family operating like a well-oiled machine.  

What advice would you give to any moms and dads who are contemplating entrepreneurship? Go for it.  Yes, it’s difficult and will challenge you in more ways than you thought possible.  But it’s an incredible opportunity to learn, and it’s extremely rewarding to dedicate yourself to something you believe in.  And whether your business ends up successful or not, I think that’s a journey worth taking. 

Any parting words of wisdom to offer moms and dads as they juggle life responsibilities with parenting?  Honestly I don’t feel particularly qualified to offer any wisdom.  I’m just another dad, trying my best to raise great kids.  So instead, I’ll leave you with a favorite parenting quote that comes from Sue Atkins, a British speaker, author, and parenting coach.  She said, “There’s no such thing as a perfect parent.  So just be a real one.”  I think that’s perfect.



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