You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Boca Jewish school teacher helps healthcare workers by printing 3D face masks

Sun Sentinel logoSun Sentinel 4/3/2020 By Sergio Carmona, South Florida Sun Sentinel

Since Katz Hillel Day School of Boca Raton transitioned to virtual learning due to the new coronavirus, faculty member Rabbi Mordechai Smolarcik has taken the opportunity to help the medical community by printing 3D face masks while he's been quarantined in his home the past few weeks.

During normal school days, Smolarcik would often be found in Katz Hillel’s makerspace where he teaches robotics, 3D printing, coding, circuitry and other innovative technology classes. When the modern Orthodox Jewish day school switched to remote learning, he went back to the makerspace and brought back to his Boca Raton home two 3D printers. Since then, he has printed at least 50 face masks for local healthcare workers and hopes to continue printing more for as long as he is able.

Smolarcik, who also teaches Judaic Studies to middle school students, has also challenged people in the community to help with this effort if they are able to and is offering instruction and print files upon request.

“I hope to inspire people so they can know that they don’t have to be out and about to help,” Smolarcik said. “There are a lot of healthcare workers out there that are putting themselves on the line. We have the benefit of being safe at home, but that doesn’t mean we can’t help them.”

While Smolarcik originally brought home the 3D printers with the hope that the students would create designs and send him stuff to print for them, he received calls from a couple of parents about designs used as face shields for doctors that are available online.

“I had the machine here and I started printing the face shields.”

Smolarcik also mentioned that one of the school’s parents who works at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, Dr. Liora Adler, told him the hospital was short of face shields, so there are plans at the moment for the face shields to be sent there.

Smolarcik also received an email from one of his students who asked him for the files of the designs as he has also a 3D printer at home. This student, sixth grader Isaac Hanina, is now following in his teacher’s footsteps and is also printing 3D face masks for medical doctors.

“This makes me feel really good because I’m helping out the community and giving them what they need,” Isaac, 12, said.

Smolarcik said, "It's a hard time for everybody, and as a teacher, I try to teach my students to concern themselves about not only their own studies and their own grades, but to also worry about others and to help others."

“We have in our school programs where every couple of weeks the kids get involved in community projects, and that doesn’t stop just because we can’t see each other or get together. I really felt for the doctors in the hospital, and I thought this would be a great educational opportunity to show our students that all the engineering and 3D printing that they’ve been learning about can be used to better the world and help other people.”

Visit hilleldayschool.org for more information on the school.

———

©2020 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

Visit the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) at www.sun-sentinel.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

AdChoices
AdChoices

More From Sun Sentinel

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon