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May 3, 2013

In the summer it is even more important than during the school year to “complement, not replicate” school-day learning. What does that look like? Take a look at the Complementing vs. Replicating tool for some ideas to spark your creativity as you plan for summer. Then think about how those strategies for engaging youth interest can be beneficial to your program, to the youth you serve, and to your community.

While you’re thinking about how to most effectively “complement, not replicate,” try one of the challenges on Y4Y. What would you say to encourage a staff member to try a dynamic, motivating activity instead of a worksheet? How could the math, literacy, science, and history concepts typed out on a worksheet be transformed into fun summer activities?



March 28, 2013

Linking your program to school-day learning can be a complex endeavor. To help organize your thinking and planning, use this diagram which displays the six core elements of aligning with the school day, all of which are addressed on Y4Y.

The six core elements help you and your colleagues deliberately plan for student success. Reflect on where your program is doing well and where your program has opportunity for improvement. All six elements are important to your Common Core State Standards implementation efforts. If you’re ready to dive into the details, take a look at the Practitioner Tips that accompany the diagram. Then use the other information and materials on Y4Y to take additional steps toward student success.



March 28, 2013

Afterschool practitioners can build partnerships with the regular school day teachers by tackling the standards together. The Survey of Teacher Programming Needs, found in the Y4Y Tools section, is a useful tool to get you started.

The school-day teacher identifies specific standards that students are struggling with in class and assigns a priority – high, medium, or low – so the afterschool partners know how to be most helpful. Think about using this tool for individual students or for a whole group, and include it as part of your portfolio of weekly planning tools.



March 8, 2013

We keep mentioning this Tools section…So what is it? It’s where you can find all of the handouts, planning guides, and materials that help you implement the content you find on Y4Y.

Guess what? Each content module has its own Tools section. And, each content module follows the same organization for its tools, with everything categorized into Learn, Assess and Reflect, Plan and Implement, and Train.

And…you guessed it. You can also get to the Tools section from the navigation bar at the top.



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.