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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Gamifying SEL with the Mood Meter

Social and emotional learning is a set of teachable competencies or skills considered fundamental to school and life success. The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) defines SEL as the process of how children “acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring...Read More

Our Kids Are Stressed Out – 5 Ways to Empower Youth To Find Their CALMM

Focus, Pay Attention, Sit Still, Listen, Follow Directions… Just a few phrases youth are bombarded with on a daily basis whether it’s coming from their parents, teachers or other adults in their lives. As adults it can seem as if our words go in one ear and out the other and that children lack attention, motivation and behavior is something they have immediate control over or is an intentional response. Our kids Are Stressed Out – Empowering Youth the find their CALMM In my years as an education...Read More

Tips And Tricks To Make Exercise Fun For Kids

There is nothing like the feelings of elation and accomplishment after exercising, but too many people never get there because they never get started in the first place. If exercising is daunting, then often, it gets avoided. When kids fall into this category and avoid exercise, then you may need to breakthrough resistance and find ways to overcome obstacles. How do you reach these kids so that they experience the joy and benefits of exercise? Make it fun. If You Build It, They Will Come Made fa...Read More

Self-Care Ideas: Give 1/Get 8 Reboot!

Keeping children at the center of our work means taking care of ourselves. Last year I wrote an article for the BOOST Breakfast Club Blog called Self-Care Ideas: Give 1/Get 8. The idea was to crowdsource ideas from a few educator friends to learn more about the daily self-care practices that help them stay resilient. For this post, I’m excited to share a reboot of that article featuring 7 more friends and their answers to the questions in CASEL’s Give 1/Get 8 worksheet. I hope their ideas inspir...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

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

Encourage Staff Well-Being: 3 Things to Try This Week

I recently spoke at the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) Conference alongside partners from the National Summer Learning Association, Afterschool Alliance, and Grow Appalachia. A common theme of our 3 workshops was the interconnectedness of physical health and social-emotional health to promote overall well-being. While at the NRPA Conference, we released an exciting new brief, Afterschool: Fostering Protective Factors that Can Last a Lifetime. The resource emphasizes the importan...Read More

Three Simple Solutions to Get Kids to Quiet Down

The new school year is about to begin. Kids are excited and staff is reenergized to start the year off on the right foot. Unfortunately, trying to calm kids down and organize them in a physically active environment proves to be extremely frustrating. What staff tends to do is start yelling louder and then find they are losing their voice AND losing their battle of getting everyone to quiet down. The solution is to have some simple and fun techniques that will immediately get their attention and ...Read More

#SummerSwap: 5 Ideas to Boost Your Breakfast Game

Healthier Generation and Kohl’s are teaming up to inspire families to prioritize a healthy lifestyle in their home and wherever children, live, learn and play. This July, we’re kicking off #SummerSwap, presented by Kohl’s Healthy at Home, and you’re invited to join us! To get you started, here are 5 ideas to boost your summer breakfast game. Try one swap each week to build a new healthy habit for the rest of the year. Try a Homemade Meal or Snack Morning convenience purchases can add up an...Read More

Portable & Packable Park Month Snacks

As I explored in my last article, Self-Care Ideas: Give 1/Get 8, it’s important for educators to prioritize their own physical and social-emotional health as they support children and families. Finding a strategy that works for you can be a challenge. For me, I find balance and a chance to recharge by spending time in nature and trying new healthy recipes. If you’re searching for inspiration to support physical self-care, below are 6 ideas to try this summer. With Park and Recreation Month just ...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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