Storypark’s purpose is to help every child fulfil their unique potential, by connecting and empowering the community around them. A key part of how we seek to achieve this is by sharing each child’s learning with their family and seeking feedback to extend each child’s unique interests.

One of the most requested features from both educators and families has been to add a ‘like’ option to stories, so families can show their appreciation. We thought long and hard to ensure that such a feature would improve engagement with families. 

We’re excited to let you know that it’s here – families can now ‘love’ a story. But that’s only half the story…

We’ve taken on board our customer’s requests, and weighed up what a Storypark version of a ‘Like’ button might look like.  Generally, ‘liking’ on social media is a way to show that you’ve seen and appreciated something. In Storypark, educators have been able to see who has viewed stories for a long time. When it comes to showing appreciation, our focus has been on improving engagement between families and educators. So we asked ourselves, ‘What would it take for families to share more through responses on stories?’.

By not having a ‘like’ option we could see that it resulted in some family members adding simple responses to stories, such as; “thanks”, “I love this”, or “cute”. These sorts of responses are really just a way to show your appreciation and don’t really help the educator extend the child’s learning. We could see that adding something like a ‘like’ option could reduce these sorts of less helpful responses. But Storypark really wanted to see if we could help support families to provide richer feedback on stories.

We talked with many of the families that use Storypark and we heard that the main reason they didn’t respond to educators’ stories was that they didn’t know what to say. We felt there was an opportunity to better support families by offering some prompts to help get them started. After talking with our advisors, including Charles Pascall, Anne Meade and Joce Nutall we came up with the following prompts:

  • I love this because …
  • This reminds me of …
  • This is interesting because…
  • At home, we’ve noticed…
  • We could add to this by…
  • Can you tell me more about…

To understand the impact of adding a way to show appreciation and these prompts, we decided to provide this to a small group of families to see how this changed the way they engaged with educators through Storypark.

  • The first group were just given the option to show their appreciation by ‘loving’ a story.
  • The second group were prompted with some conversation starters after they’d ‘loved’ a story.

What we have found is that by giving families the ability to ‘love’ a story, engagement with stories increased by 45%. We also found that the number of short comments like “thanks” and “I love this” reduced by 11%. Before we started out, we thought that by offering an option to ‘love’ a story we’d see the number of responses reduce. But we were delighted that the group that received the prompts showed they maintained a similar level of responses.

This research has given us confidence that the combination of offering a ‘love’ option along with some prompts to respond will further improve engagement from families. 

Mike Hyde StoryparkMike Hyde is the Product Manager at Storypark. Born in Levin, Mike went to Cambridge Street Kindergarten, before graduating from Victoria University of Wellington. Mike is passionate about providing good experiences for Storypark’s users.

Posted by Sonya McIntyre

Sonya was born in Lower Hutt and went to Rata Street Kindergarten and Petone Kindergarten. A qualified ECE, she studied at Victoria University in Wellington and has worked with home-based educators, in community-based childcare and in kindergarten. With childhood memories of reading books and writing stories, combined with her passion for all things social media, Sonya segued into her role with us at Storypark as social media manager.

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  1. Natascha Gilroy July 31, 2019 at 4:47 am

    Thanks for listening. I’ll be interested in seeing if this changes the amount of responses from families. I have heard they generally “don’t have time” to add a comment so this may be an easier prompt for them.


  2. Thanks Mike for introducing yourself. I like the options & prompts given to busy parents also rewarding for educators who present the storypark with snipets of valuable information.


  3. […] For more on the research and thinking behind these prompts, see here. […]


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