Breakfast Club Blog

Enhancing SEO in the After School Space

The purpose of student engagement and outreach (SEO) is to provide holistic student-centered programs and services that enhance student life. Creating lasting memories through community engagement, connection building, and creative exploration is what after school is all about! Strong attendance with engaged students are signs of a successful after school program. It means that your program is inclusive, interesting, and valuable for children and parents alike. On the other hand, a lack of solid...Read More

Creating A Space To Learn: 3 Essential Steps

The foundation of learning happens in spaces where youth feel safe, seen, and respected. Unfortunately, all learning environments are not developed with this in mind. The structural evolution of today’s K-12 classrooms has made little progress over the years. As youth practitioners and educators, we have the opportunity every day to support a more equitable learning environment by laying the groundwork, before youth enter our doors. It is an incredible responsibility for one person. Therefore, w...Read More

Staff Meetings: Lackluster To Brilliant

When was the last time you left a staff meeting thinking, “Wow, that was a great staff meeting!” Are those crickets I hear? Believe it or not, just the other day I left the office thinking just that. How you ask? This is how… Staff participated. Staff dictated the pace of the meeting. Staff cared. Here are the things that make our staff meetings successful. Strategic & planned ahead: The staff meeting was planned with a goal that the team could accomplish – something small and at...Read More

SEL and Leadership? Let’s Get Loud!

SEL, SEL, SEL… social-emotional learning! Kids need it! All kids, not only marginalized youth– for some reason people think that (duh)! But all kids need it… rich, poor, students of color, white kids, urban, rural, and suburban kids, indigenous, affluent, English Learners, deprived traumatized kids, special needs, and seemingly normal kids (whatever that is). There’s this HUGE push for educators to implement social-emotional learning into classrooms and in expanding learning organiza...Read More

Working With The SIFE English Learner Student

Have a new student?  Are they a Student with Interrupted Formal Education (SIFE)? New students enroll all the time. Generally, there is an uptick in enrollments around the semester change (just after winter holidays/New Year) or other major holidays. I have received new EL (English Learner) students just after Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year, and Easter/Spring breaks. There are many reasons for this, but no matter what, that new EL student is standing in your classroom/after-school progra...Read More

Flipping The Script: Laying The Groundwork For A More Powerful Advocacy Force

In our work, there are always limited resources. This can, unfortunately, put those working toward the same goals at odds—competing for members, for donors, for grants, or for state or federal funding. This is the case for many nonprofits and afterschool providers and has been the plight of afterschool and child care advocates for years. The constant need for increased public investment has led our two groups to sometimes feel as though a win for one is an automatic loss for the other. This has ...Read More

3 Family Engagement Resources to Try this Month

Community gatherings, potlucks, and school parties are great opportunities to re-engage the caregivers, older siblings, and families that your program supports year-round. These events, in addition to being fun and light-hearted, can build protective and supportive factors for families and children experiencing adversity. The benefit of out-of-school time goes beyond the social-emotional to the physical needs of families. According to the Afterschool Alliance, more than 4 in 5 parents in communi...Read More

Why Wellness is Important 

I am lucky enough to work for an organization that values health and wellness. They know that the most important form of healthcare is preventative, so every quarter we can make up to $85 through an app called Virgin Pulse. It’s an awesome tool, but not everyone has access to this app, and even in my office, contractors do not qualify for the program at all. As the Wellness Champion for my department, I make sure that the activities I promote can be used by all! While not every workplace, or eve...Read More

Redefining Failure: Event vs. Identity

This blog was first published on the MCUVO!CE website and is being republished with permission from Breakfast Club Blogger Marcus Strother. _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “I’ve failed over and over and over in my life… And that is why I succeed.” -Michael Jordan The statement offers a power that most of us miss. The greatest painter, singer, basketball player, educator, etc. has failed multiple times and yet in our sc...Read More

Lessons From The Backseat

I love to drive. Cars, motorcycles, ideas, discussions-you name it. I, like so many, enjoy and thrive off of the ability to be in control of where I am going and how I am getting there. As a facilitator of learning, I am also very comfortable in the driver’s seat. I know the desired goals and objectives for each learning experience I am in charge of, either designing or implementing or both. And, like many others in the field of education, the thrill of seeing the outcomes of these experie...Read More

Possibility Through Policy: Connecting More Children To Afterschool Meals

The federal Afterschool Nutrition Programs provide funding to serve suppers and snacks to children alongside educational and enrichment programming, offering a solution to the nutritional and opportunity gaps that exist for too many students after the school day ends. The meals and snacks help draw children into those educational and enrichment activities, which support academic achievement and provide much-needed childcare for working parents. And while participation in the Afterschool Meal Pro...Read More