Global Kids Review of the Educational use of Badges Within the Urban Biodiversity Network Program

During the Spring and Summer of 2010, Global Kids, Inc. supported the Urban Biodiversity Program (UBN) (a new program launched by the American Museum of Natural History and the Bronx Zoo, with funding from the New Youth City Learning Network) to use a game-like badge system to motivate student learning. Within UBN, young people at both sites used smart-phones to interact with the natural environments around both institutions, collecting data that was later processed online through a proprietary social network. Designed to be as youth-driven as possible, the hope was to use a badge system to scaffold or guide youth’s learning through the system, by both rewarding and motivating desired behavior, and tracking the learning
outcomes. The use of badges was limited, even for a demonstration project, but important lessons were learned throughout the process, suggesting next directions and potential areas for success.

A brief report has just been released. Please check it out here.