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

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The Power of Positive Thought

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, life can become overwhelming. As youth workers we want the young people we work with to embrace the positive messages of the holiday season, be it gratitude and thankfulness to knowing that they are loved and cherished. While we go the extra mile at work to ensure our youth enjoy their holiday season, we may also be stressing about our personal schedules and responsibilities around the holidays. How will I find time to purchase all those presents...Read More

Afterschool Suppers & Programs Key Part of COVID-19 Recovery

As communities continue to respond to COVID-19, one thing is increasingly clear: the hours that children are “out of school” have been increasing, and afterschool suppers and snacks alongside afterschool programs are becoming more essential than ever. 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 ...Read More

How Youth Development Programs Have Responded to COVID-19: Creativity, Innovation, and Doing What’s Brave and What’s Right

Defined by lockdowns, face masks, and video conferences, the COVID-19 global pandemic caused the world to shift to an era of physical distancing, at-home and on-line learning, shuttered community organizations, and the possibility of stifled creation for young people around the world. Recently a colleague shared an essay, “A Message of Hope,” by English author Neil Gaiman, in which he describes the unusual moment of panic, disruption, grief, and pause we are collectively experiencing as the COVI...Read More

General Election Math

I’m sure you are all very aware of the upcoming general election. It can be rather contentious and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be all about politics. It can also be about math! What better time to discuss our election process and use logic, reasoning, and math to better understand the process. Our US Constitution sets forth an electoral vote process. This means that when Americans cast their votes for president, they are in reality directing other people, called electors (we will get in...Read More

Learning How Our Students Learn

Eighty-one years ago, Albert Einstein said, “The development of general ability for independent thinking and judgement should always be placed foremost.” This quote is just as relevant today as it was then. So how do we know if we are encouraging independent thinking and judgement? We need to learn more about how our students learn. I’ve heard many successful entrepreneurs say they struggled in school because the lessons had no meaning. Successful computer programmers, coders, animators say they...Read More

The end-of-summer passion project every student should complete

“There is no passion to be found playing small- in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” Nelson Mandela I thought there was no way my August wedding would be affected. But it seems like the pandemic is here to stay for a while. Some days I find myself so frustrated life isn’t back to normal. I’m sure your students have struggled with their disrupted summers, compromised learning, and constant uncertainty. But on my better days, I remind myself this is co...Read More

Processing Social Issues Through Art-Making

This piece originally appeared on the Breakfast Club Blog on January 23, 2015. The news is often overwhelming with images of violence, objectification, and families left stunned and mourning over great loss. The need for social justice is not new. But to high school students who are just coming to understand the repetitive nature of the news…and just how nasty things in this world can be…it is new. It seems that at this tender age, high school students are beginning to identify what ...Read More

Their Lives Changed Overnight… How Youth Responded

Almost overnight, the lives of high school students all over the country, along with their teachers, mentors, and group facilitators, were completely disrupted. At a time where spring break, prom, and graduation was on the mind of many students, suddenly they found themselves wondering if they would return to school at all, or whether the abrupt ‘goodbyes’ were the last memory they would carry with them. Later in the spring, when racial tensions increased nationwide, students found themselves ag...Read More

How A CEO Integrates Leadership and Sports Everyday

How do you use leadership and life skills when you are coaching your athletes at Sportika? As if we didn’t know it, sports skills, activities, and philosophies transcend into real-life applications. Some of the transferable activities that are easy to share with our student-athletes are: keeping your eye on the ball, that’s focus. The passing of a ball, that is communication. And making an assist, that is support. All of these are leadership skills. Maintaining focus Communication with tea...Read More

What the COVID-19 Crisis Has Taught Us

I just finished my spinach smoothie for breakfast and am reflecting on how we all work hard these days to stay healthy and sane. My wife makes me spinach smoothies to start the day, and I drink them, though I don’t like them, because they are promising—hopeful for good health and energy. We need both, especially in these trying times of global pandemic, social distancing, and online learning. Friday, March 13, 2020 (yep, Friday the 13th) will be remembered by many folks in the education world fo...Read More

Cardboard Cut-outs, Story Time, & Makeshift Doc Cams: Creating Some Semblance of Normalcy

Last night our family assembled on the couch to watch opening day baseball. We donned our orange and black, took a few selfies, and watched our beloved San Francisco Giants be trounced by our biggest rival. An otherwise empty Dodger Stadium had fan cut-outs positioned in the stands most visible for the TV-viewing audience. They piped in crowd noise. Major League Baseball was trying to give the players and the fans as normal an experience as possible on opening day in July. Normalcy, or some semb...Read More

The Relationship Between Physical Activity and Learning

We may not be able to gather in groups right now, but we can make the best of a difficult situation by planning for the day when we can resume our regular activities. While we have this time outside of the usual routine, we can use it to learn new ideas that will come in handy later. As the saying goes, when life hands you lemons, make lemonade. We can use this time to our advantage, so we return even stronger and better prepared. Making Lemonade This is an excellent time to practice what you te...Read More