Breakfast Club Blog

Engaging Young People in Creative Placemaking: Part One

Young people have inspiration, ideas, and unique problem-solving skills to contribute to community planning.  One of the most holistic ways of designing sustainable spaces and places is through creative placemaking. In this two-part blog post, I will share with you what creative placemaking is, the importance of it in our communities, and how we can use creative placemaking in our youth programs. Creative Placemaking One of the best definitions of creative placemaking is from Ann Markusen and An...Read More

Serving Through Hands-On Projects

Editors Note: A special thank you to author @jillgordon for sharing one of four of Youth Philanthropy’s webinar series. Today’s post focuses on service learning models that can be implemented in your program too!  Click on the webinar link below “Serving through Hands-on Projects” for the full program.  And, keep your eyes open in February for the next special webinar from Youth Philanthropy Initiative of Indiana.  Youth Philanthropy Initiative of Indiana (YPII) created a 4-part webi...Read More

How A CEO Integrates Leadership and Sports On An Everyday Basis

Editor’s Note: We welcome first-time Breakfast Club blogger Jeffrey L. Jordan, CEO of Sportika Sports in Manalapan, New Jersey. We had the chance to interview Jeff about his work managing a 170,000 square foot elite sports facility serving 1000 families /kids a year. In this interview blog, Jeff shares how he integrates leadership and life skills with youth and staff simultaneously. Q: How do you use leadership and life skills when you are coaching your athletes at Sportika? JLJ: As if we ...Read More

“New Year” With Our Kiddos

January 1, 2018 is really our second “New Year” with our kiddos. Happy New Year, take two! As educators, we really have two new years. First, we start the year in August or September when our kiddos return from their summer vacation. Then we start a new year when midnight strikes on December 31st. Both are frequently times when we reflect and set goals. So, how are you doing since your first New Year? Take a moment to think about how you are doing since you started this school year. What is work...Read More

Collaboration, Gratitude and Birds (Yeah, Birds!)

As we enter the holiday season, I’m thankful to be coming up on my 10th year at the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. As Director of Community Partnerships, I have the unique pleasure of cultivating relationships to engage communities in promoting children’s health. For this article, I wanted to share three collaborations that I am particularly excited about – each with resources I hope you can use to bring wellness to life in out-of-school time while engaging families and empowering children...Read More

Coaching And Endless Possibilities

A quick story and important reminder about how important a good coach is, and what the possibilities are when you have a great coach. My son, who is in first grade, played rookie tackle football this fall. The season ended a few weeks ago, with his team winning the 1st-grade championship. It was a spectacular finish to the season—they got to play the game on the high school football field. Our town’s high school football team won the state championship last year, and so football is a pretty big ...Read More

How Clue and The 4C’s Inspire Connection, Community and Creativity

How DO board games inspire Connection, Community, and Creativity, you ask? Last week, eight middle school girls were consumed with the details related to who murdered Mr. Boddy. This wasn’t the latest episode of a crime drama, and thankfully wasn’t something in the news, but instead was the culminating event wrapping up their Secret Agent badge-an intense game of Clue. I’m lucky enough to be the troop leader for my daughter’s Girl Scout troop, an out-of-school time activity that she and mo...Read More

Why Schools Should Inspire Students to Do What They Do Best

This is the fourth article in a four-part series. Read the first, second and third articles. Many talented teachers and coaches have a knack for spotting and fostering innate talent in others. They are driven to maximize the potential of every student and athlete who they serve. My daughter Miriam graduated from high school this year, and she was blessed to have such a coach. Four years ago, Miriam was a gymnast who competed successfully at her first regional gymnastics meet. A few weeks later, ...Read More

Calming Back-to-School Jitters for LGBTQ Youth

Will I make friends? What if I get lost? Will I like my teachers? What if I do something embarrassing? These are the back to school jitters we’re used to helping youth navigate. We have all kinds of strategies to help young people feel comfortable in their new classroom or after school program — putting their name on a desk or name tag, icebreakers, activities that encourage youth to get to know each other — the list is endless. But consider the young person who is unsure of his or h...Read More

Our Kids Are Stressed Out – 5 Ways to Empower Youth To Find Their CALMM

Focus, Pay Attention, Sit Still, Listen, Follow Directions… Just a few phrases youth are bombarded with on a daily basis whether it’s coming from their parents, teachers or other adults in their lives. As adults it can seem as if our words go in one ear and out the other and that children lack attention, motivation and behavior is something they have immediate control over or is an intentional response. Our kids Are Stressed Out – Empowering Youth the find their CALMM In my years as an education...Read More

People Aren’t Flies: How Youth Can Listen Without Needing to Be Heard

We have all experienced a time when we believed we had a genuine connection with a person, only to find out that they had a specific agenda in mind. We have all experienced someone that has tried to proselytize or preach at us, to use us to get ahead, or to gain access to our friends or family members. For many people, what starts out as a genuine connection dissolves almost instantly as soon as the sirens of topics such as politics or religion are sounded. We know how difficult it can be to hav...Read More

Speak on What We Do! Youth Development is for You!

I believe you cannot learn youth development without experiencing it. What I mean by “youth development” is distinct from “education.” Reflecting on nearly 19 years in our field of many names, I embrace Expanded Learning here in California as it embodies the heart of our work.  When I hear Michael Funk, Director of the Expanded Learning Division at the California Department of Education, talk about the importance of love, I feel at home.  It inspires me to reach out to those of you who can relat...Read More

  • 1
  • 2