Category Archives: Digital Badges

Nine digital badges have been proposed for educational efforts at in 2016. They may be published and hosted at Other types of badges are published by a range of other institutions.


Landing page for Rotary Club presentation(s)

Mark Rauterkus was an invited speaker to the Kittanning Rotary Club on  February 28, 2018. These resources assist with interactions with members and other Rotary groups in the future.



Coach Mark Rauterkus joins us from Pittsburgh’s historic South Side. Mark has been a swim coach since 1976 when he started a swim team as a high-school-aged lifeguard.

He has coached nine (9) years at the college level. Mark has worked for more than 52 athletic directors and 34 principals. In his career, more than 10,000 kids have called him “Coach Mark.”

His swimmers have set state records in: Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois and Massachusetts.

Mark’s newest role: executive director of SKWIM USA, a nonprofit to grow the aquatic game of SKWIM.

Mark’s passion as an advocate in the city is expressed at CLOH dot org. Creating Literate Olympians Here.

Resources and Easy Courses:

Feel free to team up with a youngster for meaningful online adventures.

Advance insights with Coach Mark as your guest speaker

I’ll speak about my personal history as a coach in swimming and water polo in the city — and throughout my career. But, it isn’t much about me, however. The focus is on how we can leverage sports, fitness, wellness and efforts in our communities around the realm of playing well with others. Some of the basic understandings of the purpose and meaning of sports need to be put into better focus.

Sports are games of time, space and relationships. That’s from a book I helped publish years ago, Sport, Spirit & Soul.

With a philosophy and a few concept maps, we can make improvements and reform — as many elements in sports are in trouble and messed up.

So, I’ll talk quickly about some problems and how they can be fixed. And, how the wisdom of the group of those in attendance can make an impact with the community, teams, coaches, and participants — as well as with their own families — in terms of sports.

Likewise, I’ll leave with a few challenges and tools for others to do, online, for free, for fun, if interested. Q&A of course.

My message is a help us think again about sports and recreation from school age kids to seniors, spectators to league managers.

Projector if possible but not necessary

I love to present off of my iPad. Photos help to put more sizzle into the story. I have the various types of adapters, VGA, HDMI, and Apple’s Lightening.

Pop Quiz

As a way to be more interactive, especially among friends and with a smaller group, we can share our own remarks and move through the talk, guided by the questions on this quiz. Door prize expected for top answer giver, but I’m biased as to what answers I’m seeking. Most questions have no right or wrong answers, much like life.



  • Authentic Pittsburgh: steel, incline, 3 rivers, sports, ethnic
  • Favorite sports: soccer, hockey, football
  • Other favorable sports: hockey, football, basketball, soccer, golf, boating
  • Favorite team: Penguins (mid 2000s), Penguins, Steelers
  • Game as youngster: soccer, hockey, basketball, softball


Protect Your Head and links to other mandated courses for coaches in PA

Take this course and learn about head injuries and concussions. The course comes from the CDC and is without charge. Great for parents, coaches, officials and even athletes.

Launch the Heads Up Course and give it your attention. It is short. Get the app as well.

Volunteer coaches need to take this course too. The course is one that meets the requirements for scholastic coaches concerning the mandates of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania pertaining to concussion. Another course is required for cardiac education.

Every coach, Every year

These courses cannot be taken before July 1st of each year. Coaches don’t have to renew these for each season or sport they coach, but must complete one concussion course and the cardiac course before their first season of coaching. If you took the course last year you still have to take it this year.

Turn those certificates in.


Sport Safety International has partnered with the Pennsylvania Athletic Trainers’ Society to offer the ConcussionWise series of educational programs. These programs have been peer-reviewed and are consistent with the latest science and practical applications regarding the prevention and management of concussion. ConcussionWise™ AT for Athletic Trainers This version of ConcussionWise™ AT is at this link.

  • NFHS Learn

    The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Learning Center is an education tool that offers courses to high school coaches, administrators, officials, students, and parents. It provides a variety of program initiatives that reach the 18,500 high schools and over 11 million students involved in athletic and activity programs.

    CARDIAC COURSES: (Only need to take one of the cardiac courses.)

    CardiacWise Online Education, Sport Safety International

    Sudden Cardiac Arrest Awareness Training from NFHSLearn: Sudden Cardiac Arrest is the number one cause of death in the United States for student athletes during exercise. Caused by a structural or electrical problem.

    Learning more about prescription drugs and getting a grip on the pain-killer epidemic

    It is vital for kids, guardians, teachers and all citizens to grow in their understanding of how to prevent perscription drug abuse. This topic is covered in this course from Everfi.

    Prescription Drugs: Misuse & Abuse Prevention for High School

     This online, health course takes less than two hours. It empowers students with the skills and knowledge they need to make safe and healthy decisions about prescription drugs.

    Getting students started is easy.

    • Go to to register to get started.
    • Once already registered,  just enter this code: b40085b4 to their dashboard.

    Curriculum guide is seven pages.

    Tip: Just take the course and experience it for yourself rather than reading about its educational insights and curriculum.

    Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention.CurriculumGuide

    Prevention Matters

    One in three teens believe it is okay to use prescription drugs once in a while.

    Presciption Drug Abuse Prevention.OnePager

    Click the arrow in the box to turn the pages within the PDFs

    PDAP_Choosing an Evidence-Informed Curriculum

    Registration Guide

    Student Reg Guide

    Quiz Pre-flight for SKWIM Level 1 to Level 4

    Test your knowledge, and the delivery of these questions and answers concerning aquatic’s safety and surf knowledge by taking these four multiple choice quizzes for a whirl. They are new and may need to be edited. Your suggestions and feedback is desired.

    Every question has an opportunity to comment. You do need to register with a username and password. You need to take the tests in order.

    Level 1 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

    Level 2 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

    Level 3 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

    Level 4 Quiz for SKWIM’s surf safety:

    Recap: Special SKWIM event at the Oliver Bath House and post-game open house was a blast

    Our event and visit to the historic, Citiparks’ Oliver Bath House on South Side was a big success.

    Citiparks Lifeguards and VIPs from The Pittsburgh Project and Mel from PPS / State Rep Gainey’s office, along with hosts, Coach Mark of Pittsburgh Obama and Kevin, SKWIM’s inventor from Washington.

    Extended Game Video

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

    Opportunities and improvements to Pittsburgh’s scholastic sports amounts to a wicked design challenge.


    Pittsburgh, a sports town, needs to support its citizens, families and athletes in efficient, economical ways so programs and individuals thrive. Improving the city’s recreational landscape, especially for the often neglected sectors of the city, requires the building of the appropriate  political will in these human endeavors. Furthermore, the building and changes must include a suite of collective beliefs in technical aspects.

    All in all, the quagmire becomes a design problem with complicated, multi-dimensional aspects that spans age groups, abilities, interests, facilities, institutions, and budgets.

    Pittsburgh’s sports overhaul is a wicked design challenge.

    A report on design thinking defines wicked design challenges as a “class of social system problems which are ill-formulated, where the information is confusing, where there are many clients and decision makers with conflicting values, and where the ramifications in the whole system are thoroughly confusing” (Churchman, 1967 , p. 141).

    One positive outcome is the building of a collective belief, especially among consequential stakeholders. Municipal government, county services, school districts, coaches, volunteers, college admissions officers, employers, educators, families and learners are needed for engagement and eventual prosperity.

    The challenge of building a collective belief is a far more complicated design challenge than making a new slogan with team t-shirts.

    The courses, interactions, pathways, playlists and experiences at offer visual designs with digital badges, yet the movement is surprisingly complex. Badge system design demands more effort than a series of web activities and services. As efforts are designed to function across institutional and other types of boundaries, the meta mission with an entire open badge infrastructure makes the complexity of the struggle and its design task exponentially confusing.

    OPTIONAL Swim & Water Polo Activities: Downtown Parade

    These events are optional and extra and are NOT a part of the normal Pittsburgh Public Schools’ Summer Dreamers events. Families are invited to participate in the following community events on your own. No transportation is provided by PPS. Questions should be sent to Coach Mark Rauterkus, 412-298-3432, (cell) or

    Downtown Parade for Pittsburgh’s Bicentennial down Liberty Avenue, Saturday, July 9, 2016. Arrive after 10 am. Parade begins at 11 am. After the parade, play aquatic games at Northside, Citiparks’ Sue Murray Swim Pool, Cedar Avenue, across from the Giant Eagle / Sunoco gas station.

    Tip: Our parade position and meet-up is going to be at Liberty Ave and 11th Street. We will meet behind a school bus that is to be decorated for PPS and the Pittsburgh Promise.

    Tip 2: Park your car, if you drive, near CAPA or else on the Northside by the swim pool. then walk to Liberty Avenue and 11th, near the Strip District.

    Swim pool
    Northside’s Sue Murray Swim Pool has plenty of space for various aquatic games in deep, middle and shallow water.

    Swimmers from Summer Dreamers with Athletes United for Clean Air are going to march with Pittsburgh Public Schools and the Pittsburgh Promise to celebrate the city’s history. 

    Update: Due to parade protocol, the message for the parade is about Pittsburgh Public Schools and Summer Dreamers — and not about, “Go USA! Go Leah!”

    Olympic schedule insights:

    Cheer for Leah Smith and Katie Ledecki as they race together in Rio on:

    • Sunday, August 7th – women’s 400m freestyle prelims/final
    • Wednesday, August 10th – women’s 800m freestyle relay prelims/final
    • Thursday, August 11th – women’s 800m freestyle prelims
    • Friday, August 12th – women’s 800m freestyle finals
    • Prelims begin at 10 am EASTERN time while Semis & Finals begin at 7 pm EASTERN.

    More Swimming, Water Polo and SKWIM opportunities in Pittsburgh this summer:

    • Tuesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Ammon Rec Pool, Bedford & Memory Lane, Hill District
    • Wednesdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Ammon Rec Pool, Bedford & Memory Lane, Hill District
    • Thursdays, 6 to 7:30 pm, Citiparks Sue Murray Pool, Cedar Ave. Northside

    * Additional events always published at the open google calendar at