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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Moveable Game Jams

This Breakfast Club blog post is a follow-up to Afterschool Game Jams! which I wrote last August 2016. In it, I described what game jams are, including the “Moveable Game Jam” initiative. Much has happened since then, and I am excited to share it all with the BOOST community! What Are Game Jams, Anyway? Game jams typically take place over a weekend, and involve a theme, or specific content area. For example, this spring, NOAA is hosting an Arctic Climate Game Jam, in which participan...Read More

Igniting Students’ Passion to Learn Through National History Day

Due to the nature of my work as a researcher and evaluator, I do not work directly with students. My classroom and out-of-school time visits usually involve me sitting in the back as a non-obtrusive visitor noting the interactions between the teachers and students. Typically, I will note the types of questions students ask and how the teacher responds. At the end of the session, I thank the teacher for letting me observe the classroom, and that usually ends our interaction. That being said, it i...Read More

Design Thinking Develops Global Citizens

How might we encourage our students to become global leaders? How might we create agency, or a mindset of action, in 21st century kids? Our students are passive. They are used to “sitting and getting” information. Even as we talk about preparing students for the 21st century, the pressures of college acceptance and testing make it difficult to change students’ (and parents’) mindsets. How might we create a bias towards action in our students so that they understand their ...Read More

The Challenge of the Selfie and the Great Social Experiment

As I write this blog entry, I am driving back on a large charter bus with 50 high school students, after spending the last 3 days exploring the many adventures that the great city of Chicago has to offer. A high-energy experience filled with museums, college tours, tilting over the John Hancock Observatory, deep dish pizza, and even an evening swim. Throughout the last three days of this fun-filled journey, one of the great “reminders” that was stated every time we stepped off the bu...Read More

BOOST Master Class: Leading for Student Engagement

I will be teaching on Project-Based Learning (PBL) strategies, and more, at a Master Class offered during the upcoming BOOST Conference. I hope you’ll join me on Thursday, April 28, from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m., for an interactive session on “Leading for Student Engagement: How to Plan and Sustain Effective Project-Based Learning Initiatives.” What sorts of projects might students tackle during out-of-school time? I’ve seen students design low-cost prosthetic devices to improve...Read More

Learning With Documentary Films: Strategies to Engage Students

Asia Society and BOOST Collaborative are partnering to create a series of blogs on global learning in out-of-school time. This blog entry was orginally published on EdWeek’s Global Learning Blog. Documentaries and film can bring the world to students in very real ways. Cleary Vaughan-Lee, Education Director for Global Oneness Project, tells us how and shares resources and strategies. Why do we need stories? Stories are universal and create connections across time, place, and cultures. Now ...Read More

Helping Kids Step Into Their Leadership

I run a leadership program at a company aptly called The Leadership Program. My colleagues and I run training and coaching every year for more than 150 people, our team of Leadership Trainers, who go into more than 100 schools every year to work with youth and teachers. We continually proclaim that we are committed to creating experiences that inspire people to step into their leadership and make positive change in their lives and the lives of others. Yet, I am never sure we really do it. We rea...Read More

Teaching Students How to ask Deep, Personal Questions

This blog is an additional follow-up resource from J. Branson Skinner and Liz Ricketts’ blog, Experience Inspires Love, originally posted on the Breakfast Club. This blog is a part of our ongoing partnership with Asia Society. The #Collectofus Global Leaders program, part of The OR Network, connects students in Accra, Ghana; Vaalwater, South Africa; Detroit, Michigan; Brooklyn, New York; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Washington, D.C. They create and exchange scarves and videos and then interact th...Read More

Fun for the Zoo: Engineering Enrichment and Enhancement

Fun for the Zoo: Engineering Enrichment and Enhancement. In our Fun for the Zoo class, student “fungineers” are challenged to invent enrichment items that provide stimulation, challenge, and novelty to enhance the behavioral, physical, social, cognitive, and psychological well being of zoo animals. In the wild, animals must forage or hunt for food, and protect themselves against predators, but in the zoo, most of their needs are provided for by the keepers. So, enrichment must be pro...Read More

3 Lessons on Growth Through After School Programs

Being that this is my first blog as a BOOST Breakfast Club Blogger, I am excited to share my passion for afterschool programs. When I began in the year 2000, there were more questions than answers. It was the age of discovery and exploration. It was before the After School Education and Safety (ASES) programs existed and 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) programs were the only thing we knew. I was hired as a part-time Site Coordinator for an after school program and part-time Campus...Read More

Photography Can Transform Perspectives

Asia Society and BOOST Collaborative are partnering to create a series of blogs on global learning in out-of-school time.  This month features MaryBeth Jackson, Founder and Director of The Viewfinder Project. This blog entry was orginally published on EdWeek’s Global Learning Blog. Children today have a lot of information to sift through and discern. The media bombards them with images and information, some positive and encouraging, some not. The more time children spend with media, the mo...Read More

Hip-Hop(e): Engaging Youth with Social & Emotional Learning

Some community leaders and I were in shock when teens in our after school hip-hop leadership program came in and told us that they felt like absolute failures at school. The disillusionment came about because these were the same youth who were presenting at regional conferences with Congress members, and opening up for international hip-hop acts. These young people, primarily young men of color, were telling us that they were treated like they were stupid at school, and constantly singled out an...Read More