Breakfast Club Blog

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

A Jewel of a Project: Cassini Mission at Saturn

In the blackness of space, a “jewel” shines in the distant Sun, encircling it once every 29 ½ years. The planet Saturn’s brilliant rings dazzle casual observers and serious scientists alike, reflecting the Sun’s light as though it was a gem. But now, Saturn has a gift from Earth.  After 13 years and 293 orbits around Saturn, on September 15, 2017, the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft dove into the planet’s atmosphere, losing all contact. The robotic spacecraft left Earth in 1997, bound for the ringed ...Read More

4 Steps to Make Student-Centered Learning Come Alive!

The purpose and potential of Expanded Learning Programs have changed radically in the last 20 years. The process began with the passage of California’s first comprehensive afterschool legislation, which Carla Sanger of LA’s BEST and I initiated in 1997. This paved the way for hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for elementary and middle school programs and resulted in a growing body of knowledge about what it takes to make a real difference in students’ lives. As part of this process, man...Read More

BOOST Master Class 2017: Ignite Their Passion with Project Based Learning

Are you an after school program leader looking to better connect students to the community? Have you heard about project-based learning but lack the skills to implement it effectively? Do you want to see every single one of your students engaged in work that both challenges them and ignites their passions? Master PBL in 5 Simple Steps Imagine telling your students that they will be designing and printing 3-dimensional medical devices to assist ophthalmologists with eye exams. Or, if 3D printing ...Read More

How To Strengthen Student Listening Skills with Podcasts

Today’s post is written by guest author Monica Burns and was originally posted on  Monica Burns is an Author, Speaker, Curriculum & EdTech Consultant and Apple Distinguished Educator. Visit her site for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher. Podcasts are a great way to help strengthen student listening skills. Podcasts are audio (and sometimes video) recordings similar to a radio program or television episode. A wide range of organization...Read More

Shifting From the Sage on the Stage

Learning doesn’t always have to be teacher led. There are other models that create authentic experiences for students and are closer to what they will experience once they are finished with school. Last spring, a group of high school juniors came to me, wanting to explore the intersection of art and technology using both paper and sewn circuitry. I had never worked with either before but was excited to learn these tools myself, so I eagerly agreed to the project. Tinkering alongside your student...Read More

What Expanded Learning Increasingly Looks Like – and Why It’s So Important!

Looking back over the two decades… that I’ve had the privilege of being part of the grand experiment of developing expanded learning opportunities for millions of America’s most vulnerable children, I believe we’re in the process of co-creating a future that can and will make a bigger difference than any of us could have imagined. The rate of change is accelerating. The breadth and depth of knowledge is greater than ever. And the willingness to move to the next level is i...Read More

Blood Moon, Red Planet – Spooky Stuff?

In this season where longer nights outlast the daytime hours, many celebrations and legends abound. Most notably in our culture, Halloween and the Day of the Dead both reference passings, remembrances, and other worldliness. We honor and give symbolism to things that are unknown and powerful, perhaps unexplainable and mysterious, and sometimes dangerous. This can make things feel spooky and scary. This September’s “super blood moon” – a total lunar eclipse during a time when ou...Read More

Project-Based Learning (PBL) in Out-of-School Time

Projects that unfold outside the regular school day create opportunities for students to explore personal interests, tackle challenges, build new skills, and sometimes even improve their communities in the process. I’ve seen students use this rich learning time to monitor local air quality, invent devices to improve life for children with disabilities, design digital games and apps, and run their own multimedia publishing centers. “It’s all about what kids want to do,” on...Read More

Expanding Horizons: Global Learning in Out-of-School Time

Asia Society and BOOST Collaborative are partnering to create a series of blogs on global learning in out-of-school time.  This month features Heather Loewecke from Asia Society.   The impact of globalization is clear. The diversification of our neighborhoods and workplaces, technological advancements, transnational issues, and political conflicts are transforming the ways we must work and interact with individuals from vastly different backgrounds, countries, and cultures.  However, research re...Read More

A Modest Proposal: Taking Your Program to the Next Level

As Common Core gets underway, we have a great opportunity to take our programs to the next level. We can ensure that students aren’t just consumers of knowledge, but creators, critics and communicators of ideas! We have a chance to become more student-centered, to be guides-by-the side and facilitators of learning rather than adults who are in charge of what kids learn or what they experience. We can expand on youth development as a principle and practice by making 21st Century skills real...Read More

After Afterschool: Developing the Future Workforce

Most school-based efforts to introduce students into the workforce take the form of job fairs that promote traditional careers, but by all accounts, ten years from now the job market will look noticeably different than it does today. Some traditional jobs are likely to disappear. Others will survive, but the job descriptions and requirements will change. Some new fields, such as “green” technology, will evolve into major employment sectors. Entirely new professions will emerge, ones ...Read More

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