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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In this Time of Crisis, Afterschool Gives Me Hope

California, and the nation as a whole, are in the midst of multiple and intersecting crises—the public health crisis of COVID-19, the resulting economic crisis, and a long-standing crisis of injustice and systemic oppression of Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). When I think of the children and communities who are suffering the most as a result of these crises, I get consumed with questions. What will happen to kids this summer? When will they be able to come back to school? How wil...Read More

What Is So Special About After School?

After 20+ years of working in after school, I have learned that there are many things that make after school special. Some might be apparent, but others might be less obvious. One go-to resource for me is information from the Afterschool Alliance, This is Afterschool, which reminds us of all of the benefits of after school. They sum it up in a few words. “Decades of research prove afterschool helps kids attend school more often, get better grades, and build foundational skills, like communicatio...Read More

Mindset: An After-School Legacy from Kobe Bryant

Kobe “Bean” Bryant was one of the youngest players to enter the National Basketball Association (NBA), at 18 years of age. He played 20 years for one of the greatest sports franchises in the history of professional sports, the Los Angeles Lakers. He was a five-time NBA World Champion, two-time Men’s Basketball Gold Medalist, twice the Most Valuable Player of the NBA Finals. He was voted the NBA’s Most Valuable Player in 2008. He became one of Nike’s greatest ambassadors, next only to...Read More

All The Single Moms

What did I have for breakfast today? I think I finished the kids’ Honey Nut Cheerios and must have downed some coffee. I can’t recall though, because I am losing my mind. My wife has been out of town on a work trip for two weeks and I am trying to hold down the fort as a single dad. I am running a zone defense and I am privileged enough to have the support of a part-time nanny… and still, I am getting crushed. This experience reminds me, once again, how much I appreciate all the Single Mom...Read More

Generosity In Afterschool

In August of this year, the staff I am a part of had three days of professional development and planning for the upcoming school year. During this time together, we participated in an activity called My One Word. Each individual picked one word that would help guide his or her personal and professional life for the 2019-2020 school year. The word I chose for this year is “Intentional.” Great word and a great idea, right? Well, I am now only two months into being intentional about all I do and I ...Read More

A Holistic Approach To Helping Traumatized Kids, Adults, and Communities

I’m a voracious consumer of news. Each morning or lunch break, I set aside time to read headlines, scan news tickers, and flag the day’s trending developments on social media. Later in the day, I pick a few headlines or bookmarked videos, and dig into the details. When I have time, I read across news sources – traditional pieces, independent sources, and opinion bloggers – to provide more nuance to my understanding and sort out the general zeitgeist on the news of the day. Honestly, I think the ...Read More

Litmus Test Your Program’s Magic

The best organizations keep a constant eye on program improvement. Walt Disney once said, ”The real trouble with the world is that too many people grow up.” I believe that is also the trouble with a lot of well-intended organizations with incredible mission statements and passionate staff who work with children on a day-to-day basis, but get caught up in that controversial catch-phrase commonly known as, “adulting.” I’ve been guilty of it. We all get busy. Papers need to be filed, grants need to...Read More

Afterschool = Great Opportunity

As I pack my bags to head off to another location to go train, I reflect on how I arrived in the afterschool field. It has been more than 10 years now and I have loved every minute of it. Even though I focus more on adult learning, as I train afterschool providers, I still have several opportunities to conduct site visits and interact with youth. I am amazed every day at the dedication of afterschool professionals, and wanted to share a few reflections of my own at this time. What is compelling ...Read More

Negative Social Media Messaging, Safe Spaces, and Happy Kids

Now more than ever we are inundated with messaging from social media, news, text messages, and more. When I wake up each day I check the top 5 headlines from various media outlets, scroll through Facebook, check Instagram and LinkedIn and, not to be forgotten, I review the latest tweets from various people and groups that I follow on Twitter. When I started tracking how much time I spend starting my day this way, I noticed that it was a fairly big chunk of my morning. Many of the words that gree...Read More

You Shouldn’t Play With Your Food, But You Should Play With Your Data!

I’ve worked with many expanded learning programs in many settings over the years, making me one of the luckier researchers out there. Too often, though, I see program staff dedicating a lot of time and effort to collecting data, and almost none to learning from it. What a bummer. One reason why data goes in, but doesn’t come back out, is because teams have too few experiences with exploratory, low stakes, playful explorations of their data. Instead, data is used in a last-minute rush to get the ...Read More

The Homestretch: 2019 Campaign to Save California’s Afterschool Programs

Editor’s Note: Welcome our newest Breakfast Club Blogger Jen Dietrich. Jen is the Director of Policy for Partnership for Children & Youth and the coordinator of the California Afterschool Advocacy Alliance (CA3) and the Save Afterschool Campaign. This month, we will learn if state-funded afterschool programs will be given the funding they need to survive. After School Education and Safety (ASES) programs across California are struggling to provide the high-quality support that more tha...Read More

3 Tips For Engaging Teens In The Summer And In Afterschool Meal Programs

When it comes to the federally funded Afterschool and Summer Meal Programs, what is the trick to engaging teens better? Across the country, both anti-hunger advocates and out-of-school time program providers are asking themselves this very question. First, a refresher: The Afterschool and Summer Meal Programs provide funding to serve meals and snacks afterschool and during the summer months when school is not in session. Both a snack and supper can be served to children and teens up to age 18 at...Read More

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