Breakfast Club Blog

The BOOST Breakfast Club Blog is a curated space where bloggers from around the world contribute content on a continual basis about a variety of topics relevant to in and out-of-school time. The BOOST Breakfast Club blog is at the heart of an ongoing dialogue where expanded learning and education professionals share their personal thoughts and stories from the in and out-of-school time field. They also tell us what they ate for breakfast!

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any other agency, organization, employer, or company. Enjoy the brain food.

The BOOST Breakfast Club Blog is Brain Food for In and Out-of-School Time Leaders!

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6 Meeting Makeovers to Try This Fall

Our friends at the Born This Way Foundation hosted #BeKind21 this September. It is a global call to action to practice acts of kindness with the mission of building kinder, more connected communities that foster mental wellness. At Healthier Generation, we love this concept so much we want to continue the spirit of #BeKind21 and keep building our “kindness team” into the fall. Ready to join in? Below are 6 meeting makeover ideas to cultivate self-kindness and kindness to others! 1-2, Start Your ...Read More

5 Simple Ways Youth Can Inspire Change

This blog was originally published on August 27, 2019. Youth voice in the advocacy space is still timely and relevant so we wanted to share it again. Enjoy!  I believe in the power of youth voice because youth can inspire change. Young people are experts on their own lives, and their lived experiences should be heard and used to advocate for change. We live in a time where advocacy and grassroots movements have been instrumental in highlighting social issues and bringing about positive change. W...Read More

5 Ways to Use BOOST Cafe for Professional Development

We thought it was a good time to re-share about BOOST Cafe and how you can use it to BOOST your professional development! Since its launch, we have added some incredible new resources! Check out the FREE online learning opportunities Need resources to reconnect with yourself, look no further than the Virtual Calming Room Find FREE e-BOOST downloads to use with your staff, youth, and communities Make someone’s day and send them a BOOST E-Card Want to explore BOOST Cafe further, then fill ou...Read More

A Little Bit of Normal Please

This morning I continued my push for health and wellness by skipping the pancakes and opting instead for yogurt and berries for breakfast. Speaking of the push for health and wellness … I was a conscientious mask-wearer for the entire duration of COVID-19 in California, never wavering in my support for the shutdown or the mask mandate, or any of the other guidelines. Though I got impatient toward the end, I fixed my sights on June 15, 2021, the date our governor said business was “getting back t...Read More

Community Educators: What’s In a Name? A Lot, Actually

We are introducing the field to a new idea – the consideration that our afterschool staff are Community Educators at the heart of their work. To clarify, it is not a new idea but is a new way to think about the way we can refer to our staff. And we recently captured video stories of some inspiring Community Educators in California. Check out the first of the videos and see how Diego Arancibia, ASAPconnect Director, answered interview questions posed by Julie Sesser, ASAPconnect Specialist and Co...Read More

Hope Circle: An Opportunity for Creative Movement

Dancing engages nearly all of the brain at once. Just participating in dance is good for the brain, but dance can also be used to intentionally target really important development areas for children. Children can come to see what they are capable of by experiencing the influence they have when they engage in creating dance. One of my favorite creative movement experiences to guide children through, and adults for that matter, is the “Hope Circle” experience. I first participated in a...Read More

Your Summer on Mars – Afterschool Enrichment

Ah, summer! A time for exploration, inspiration, and in afterschool – enrichment. Especially after this last challenging year, kids and leaders alike are in need of refreshing, inspiring things to learn and experience. Why not spend the summer on Mars, at least virtually? With temperatures heating up around the country, thinking about Mars may help cool you down. In Martian summers, the surface temperature can occasionally be what we’d call “comfortable” here on Earth, but on the same night can ...Read More

We’ve All Got a Spark. Let’s Light a Fire!

We have the power to light a fire in every child with whom we work. It only takes one person to change a child’s life. Think back on your educational influences and you will likely find someone who lit a fire in you that still burns today. Across the country I’ve asked leaders, “What childhood science experiences do you remember?” People share about baking soda volcanoes, science fairs, field trips, and dissections that lit a spark in them. I never hear about textbooks. D...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

Where the Rubber Meets the Road- Planning a Successful Afterschool Activity

Building on the concept that the most productive learning comes through active involvement, the effectiveness of any program that seeks to develop skills in youth must be rich in activity. Remember, most of the students sit for almost 7.5 hours a day! They are eager to be involved in activities that allow for action and interaction. Enthusiasm is contagious and movement essential. You do not need a repertoire of several hundred activities. Such a large selection is simply not practical and, more...Read More

4 Things You Can Do Right Now to Promote Meaningful Participation in Afterschool

Research tells us that if we hope to make a difference in young people’s learning, we need to provide opportunities for learning that is meaningful. This is especially important as youth return to afterschool programs after a year of isolation. If young people are engaged in meaningful participation, they are empowered to be self-directed, make responsible choices about how to use their time, and participate as group members in making decisions that influence the larger program and what they lea...Read More

Swing Out of the COVID Math Slide

It is too early to know how far student’s math skills have slid during this pandemic?  Some studies estimate as much as a year of math, more than any other subject, will be lost by a large percentage of our students. Why might pandemic learning loss be worse in math than other subjects? Experts say: Unlike reading, math is process-oriented and almost always taught through formal instruction. Parents are often less equipped to help their children in math. Stress with pandemic may worsen existing ...Read More