NORWOOD, Mass. – Four Jewish day schools in the U.S. – including Kehillah Schechter Academy, a pre-kindergarten through eighth grade Jewish day school in Norwood – will participate in a pioneering ‘digital badge’ learning program for the 2013-14 school year.
The program, called Tamritz (Hebrew for incentive), is a 21st century version of scouting merit badges with an academic twist.
Digital badge learning rewards student achievements across a wide range of disciplines and learning experiences, within and beyond the classroom, in traditional and online settings. Without earning the badges, student cannot move from one step to another in the program or unit.
Through digital badge learning, students are guided by their teachers, encouraged to explore their own interests, acquiring knowledge and skills along the way. Each digital badge earned becomes an electronic ‘credential’ that contains the student’s knowledge and accomplishments. Sharing badges through social media allows teachers, the student and their parents to see the supporting documentation.
“Selected schools demonstrate an innovative spirit and readiness for transforming how learning happens,” said Sarah Blattner, Tamritz’ founder and executive director, in a recent release from KSA.
“The schools we chose are willing to experiment and explore how digital badge learning can engage students,” said Myrna Rubel, chief advisor for Tamritz’ advisory council, in the release.
At KSA, badges will be used in the rabbinics program for sixth graders. Each time students show proficiency in the text and in the particular habit of mind, they will earn the badge. Before participating, teachers will have online professional development and students will participate in a nine-week digital citizenship course.
Tamritz will match program fees with in-kind support for each participating school during the first year, with support from the Joshua Venture Group’s Dual Investment Program and the AVI CHAI Foundation.
Contact Nitzan Resnick (firstname.lastname@example.org or 781-769-5555).