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21st Century Community Learning Centers

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February 22, 2013

For anyone new to a job, there is comfort in knowing that there is a support network in place – a source of ideas, inspiration, and opportunity. The Network section on Y4Y provides multiple avenues to learn from others in the 21st CCLC community, including Discussion Boards where they can post their questions and get feedback from across the country.

Anyone who registers for Y4Y can use the discussion boards to ask questions and offer answers. Try it out; have your new hires pick an area of expertise they are still mastering and ask them to post a question on the Discussion Boards. As responses come in, they will gain knowledge and confidence that will benefit your program’s youth, plus they will strengthen their connection to the 21st CCLC community at large.

 



February 22, 2013

Before they know it, new staff will get caught up in the exciting, but admittedly hectic, flow of your program. Get them off to a good start with a planning tool that offers ideas for connecting their activities and projects with school-day lessons.

The Alignment Strategies Worksheet lists a variety of strategies that an individual or a program can rate as readily doable, somewhat complex, or challenging. You may want to help your new staff members set goals to tackle some of the readily doable strategies such as setting up communications strategies for talking to parents about homework or talking with school-day teachers about academic goals.

A quick win with one of these strategies will set the tone for a positive and productive semester, fueling the drive to accomplish even more.

 



February 22, 2013

Ever wish you had your own personal Y4Y expert in your program who you could drop in on and ask a quick question or two whenever you needed a little help or inspiration?

The next best thing could be our new Coffee Break Webinar series, starting in March. Each hour-long webinar will focus on a specific feature or resource on the Y4Y portal that you can use in your program. The presentation section of these webinars will be brief in order to allow for more Q&A and discussion time between the attendees and the presenter. Keep an eye on the Network section and on these E-blasts for more information about upcoming webinars.

So bring your questions, bring your insights, and bring your coffee! Because you never know – after getting a few of these webinars under your belt, your program’s new Y4Y expert … could be you!

 



January 16, 2013

With so many demands on your time, it may be challenging to plan and prepare a professional development session for your staff completely from scratch. Y4Y can help. It has training resources in each module to help convey key concepts and ideas to your staff, and to guide them in applying the portal’s lessons to programming decisions.

Since everyone has their own unique training style, Y4Y offers two types of training materials. “Trainings To Go” present a complete, ready-to-use workshop package that includes a PowerPoint presentation, talking points, and all the accompanying handouts. You can customize the materials to your particular needs, or you can use them just as they are. Trainings to Go are perfect if you’re stumped for ideas or pressed for time. If you’d like to add even more of your own personal touch to the training, try a Training Starter, which provides a step-by-step template with suggested talking points and room to fill in your own plans.

Both types of trainings can be completely customized with your own activity ideas, pictures, and talking points. For a sample of training topics in both styles, take a look at what’s available in the Teach section for Family Involvement.

 



January 16, 2013

A topic like cultural competence can be tough to wrap your head around, but it’s a critical asset for you to build in your staff. The Cultural Competence Training To Go in the Family Involvement module sets up the entire session for you, even detailing which questions to ask and how to facilitate the activities.

The PowerPoint and handouts have a professional look and are designed to encourage participants to reflect on this important topic. A training plan lays out the timing for the session and lists what materials are needed.

Since you know your staff best, you can choose to deliver the training as is or edit, add, and delete slides to tailor it to your staff’s experiences and needs. Or, use just the handouts as coaching tools for individual staff members. You can even divide up the training and distribute sections to several staff who can co-lead a session.