Breakfast Club Blog

Right Nows: How Are You Coping In The Face Of Tragedy?

Last month was the anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks. I’ve been thinking about it, obviously, and my experience living in New York City during that time.  In the last two months, Floridians have been recovering from Hurricane Irma, Puerto Rico is completely devastated from Irma, and Texans are trying to recover from Hurricane Harvey. Mexico is trying to deal with the aftermath of the strongest earthquake to hit that country in a century, as well as their own Hurricane Kat...Read More

The Role and Vision of a CEO from a CEO

I have a lot of breakfast meetings these days, the hardest kinds of meetings. Not the kind where I get excited about pitching a program to a new client or get to brainstorm curriculum and advocate for youth. Those meetings I love. No, lately my days are filled with meetings wherein I talk—or, more often, listen– to people expressing real fear and vulnerability about their present and future. Not just people: my staff. In February 2017, I gave speech to my staff on “the state of Arc&#...Read More

15 Messages of Encouragement to Site Supervisors

As the beginning of the school year is underway, safe spaces during the out-of-school time hours are open and serving children all around the nation. This piece is collaboratively written by our bloggers and includes wisdom, tips, and inspiration for all of our valued Site Supervisors of out-of-school time programs. You ALL matter, and we wish you a successful school year. “I’ve been thinking a lot lately about this quote from Faouzi Skali: “My friend, stop searching for the wh...Read More

Leaping Into the Void: Modeling Learning for Our Students

Artist Yves Klein perfectly captured how it feels to be engaged in the creative act in this 1960 piece entitled Leap Into the Void. I have been teaching the creative process and making art for most of my adult life, and this image perfectly captures the feeling of not knowing where you’ll end up when you begin to make something. Leaping, literally, into the unknown, not knowing if you’ll fall to your death or grow wings and soar, is a wonderful metaphor for the process I’ve tried to teach studen...Read More

Back-to-School: Pencils and Possibilities

I love pencils. Freshly sharpened, classic #2 pencils. I love the smell of a freshly-sharpened pencil. I love the way a sharp pencil feels on a thick, new notebook. I love the way you can erase away anything you don’t like with a pencil. I love the way pencils will smudge my fingers. I love the eraser dust that fills the page. Fresh pencils also bring with them all of the feelings of back-to-school. Here in Indiana, the dawn of a new school year is already upon us:  School buses are shining in t...Read More

5 Reasons Why You Should Attend the BOOST Conference in 2018

Join the largest, most recognized and comprehensive global convening for after school, expanded learning, and out-of-school time professionals May 1-4, 2018! Here are 5 reasons why you should attend the Best of Out-of-School Time Conference next year: Reason #1 – It’s FUN and ENGAGING What if your conference experience felt like an after school program? You’ve got it! Set in a retreat-like atmosphere, this annual, extraordinary event will rejuvenate your passion, boost your direction for quality...Read More

The Flawed Leader

For the past 15 years, I have developed and grown an afterschool program model from its infancy serving 20 kids in a church to serving over 600 kids across three cities, demonstrating incredible success rates. By all means I have been deemed as a visionary, strong, competent leader.  Each year as we get larger and stronger, the pressure mounts as the praise continues, and the expectations build.  However, what most people on the outside looking in don’t see is with all the ambition, the drive fo...Read More

Keep The Channel Open

I’ve been sitting in contemplation of this quote by dancer/choreographer Martha Graham for a few weeks now: “There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with...Read More

Afterschool Programs: Expanding the Definition of Success

As a father of two girls ages 7 and 10, married to an amazing educator of over 20 years, I have a 360-degree perspective of the teaching and learning experience. As a matter of fact, my 4th grade daughter is my wife’s student. It’s a complete family affair. Most people I share that with have an initial reaction of concern. The most common questions are, “How is that working out for your daughter? Isn’t that weird for her? Does she feel challenged?” All these have me...Read More

BOOST Master Class: Strengths Based Leadership

I’m grateful for the opportunity to host a Master Class on the topic of Strengths Based Leadership on Wednesday, April 19th from 2:30-4:30 pm during the BOOST Conference. In nearly 20 years of learning from and working for Gallup, I can’t think of a more exciting and impactful topic to share with conference attendees this spring. Gallup research proves that people succeed when they focus on what they do best. Each person has natural patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving that ca...Read More

Tending You

What does personal development have to do with professional development? I’ve had many people ask me some version of this question. In other words, why bother working on myself? I should spend my time working on my job skills, my staff, my responsibilities, my “stuff.” And, okay, I get that. Tending to others, as I’ve pointed out, gives me a purr for sure. But here’s the thing that I’ve come to realize (slowly and begrudgingly and after being repeatedly put in...Read More

Growth Mindset: Losing is the New Winning

Spending more than half of my life in and out of a locker room, one gets very used to sound of competition. Sayings like, “failure is not an option” and “winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing,” were common echoes in my upbringing. From one coach to the next, it was always about winning, getting better, playing your best, minimizing mistakes, practice makes perfect, etc., etc. It’s no wonder that I wanted to quit after losing my first soccer game ...Read More