Akgold helped the JCC team synthesize the core goals for the project. Next came focusing on the users by creating personas and scenarios. By defining the goals and focusing users during the design journey, the team was able to hit the target.
› Project: Design a robust online community to bring the JCC Association’s An Ethical Start® preschool program into homes keeping parents, teachers, and students connected
› Position: Consultant, Online Community Designer
› Year: 2006
› Project Summary: See below
An Ethical Start® had developed a full line of educational products but was missing a key component: leveraging the power of the internet to connect the community.
The AES program had developed from pilot stage in the late 1990’s to a full curriculum complete with lesson plans, music CDs, child books, Peer K. Explorer and Dafna dolls, and a support staff. There were major educator conferences called Peer K. Academy and also a yearly Kadimah Conference. Building off this strong foundation, the visionary team saw a unique opportunity to work with Andrew to bring the team’s vision to life.
The goal was to help An Ethical Start® create a successful website that would help the program connect together the community and become a powerful building block for the future growth of the program. How could the team leverage the An Ethical Start® assets — the people, materials, vision, network of JCC preschool teachers, parents students, and JCCs around the world, and extend the value proposition through online technology?
Partnership and working hand in hand with the JCC An Ethical Start® team was the key to success. Andrew did field research with the educators in America and Israel to fully understand the user needs, the value of the program and the core message rooted in Jewish education.
This phase consisted of defining the goals for the community, characterizing the audience, defining applicable web technology, and creating a series of specialized flow charts and key page prototypes.
The Visual Design phase consisted of a complete design analysis, exploration of design angles and navigational layouts, distilling these into a single thematic focus, followed by completion of design elements and then the preparation of the html templates.
Andrew worked hand in hand with the JCC’s technology and engineering partners. This close collaboration between the JCC team, Akgold and technology allowed the group to prototype and iterate rapidly to advance the design.
“Thank YOU for the amazing job you did to give us a visual image that is accessible to all.”
— Dr. Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Professor of Child Psychology, Temple University
“It was great working with you and I hope we will continue to be in touch in the future. Your work is incredible, and I’ve learned a lot from you.”
— Simi Peters, Jewish Scholar & Teacher, Author of Learning to Read Midrash