Author: Katie Brackenridge

Summer Matters! Who Will You Invite? (CA Specific)

Today I had a peach for breakfast which means summer time!  My kids are 4 days from summer break. They are excited to sleep in for a week and NOT think about deadlines, papers, projects, tests.  But, they’ll start to get bored.  Luckily for them, they’ll be moving right into their next set of adventures and learning opportunities.  From rock climbing to animal camp to spy club – they’ll be stretch...

Three Shining Lights Against a Dark Cloud

Under normal circumstances, I’m not one to be political in a public and professional forum, but really, I’m in need of some writing therapy. Every day, I read the latest news story about another negative appointment to the President- elect’s cabinet. Who knew there were so many people who both seem to despise the role of government AND also want to lead it? While alarming, those ...

Finding Common Ground: Connecting Social-Emotional Learning During and Beyond the School Day

The Partnership for Children & Youth (PCY) has recently released Finding Common Ground: Connecting Social-Emotional Learning During and Beyond the School Day. This brief provides language and strategies to support alignment between K-12 and expanded learning programs, by cross-walking key priorities and initiatives in California that impact social-emotional learning (SEL). In PCY’s work ...

My Why: Darwin

Don’t worry, this isn’t about natural selection. It’s about a boy…named Darwin. But first, let me digress. As I wrote in a previous BOOST blog, my first teaching experience was in Cameroon. I was 21, no training, no text books, incomprehensible American accent. Not surprisingly (but not elegantly), I ended up yelling “I can’t take this &$(@” and stompi...

From My Sofa

If you’re like me, you are NOT reading this at breakfast but from your sofa at night with an IPA or cup of chamomile tea in hand … which means you might not make it to the end.  So, I’m starting with a plug for input to the Standards in Action being developed by CAN’s Work Group on Quality Standards.  Just go to the CAN website.  You don’t even have to review all of them, just click on the two or ...

Join the Discussion – Proposed Changes to 21st Century Community Learning Center Funding

As many of you have heard, the Partnership for Children & Youth (PCY) is putting together state legislation to make improvements to the 21st Century Community Learning Center program. The proposed changes are based on aspects of the current law that we’ve heard for many years create barriers or are difficult to administer in the field. Our goal is to make the funding easier to apply for ...

Highlights of a Summer Road Show

This summer I’ve been eating my breakfast on the road. Every year, the Summer Matters campaign tours summer programs across the state from Glenn County down to San Bernardino and over to Fresno. The programs, supported by local technical assistance providers, have been working intentionally to improve their quality for the past 4 years. What we’re seeing is a real testament to the inge...

The Common Core and What Children Need

I was recently introduced to this quote from Robert Halpern of the Erikson Institute: “… children need times and places in their lives where the adult agenda is modest, if not held at bay; where the emotional temperature is low, and acceptance is generous; where learning is self-directed, experiential, and structured to be enjoyable; where talents can be identified; and where possible ...

Summer Style

School’s almost out, and across the country kids are getting ready for summer camp. Back in the day, everyone brought a big trunk, loaded with bug spray and books, bandannas and band aids and of course, secret stashes of candy. There was lots of anticipation about which counselors would be there, which kids would be in your cabin, and what activities you were going to sign up for. Believe it...