After school program activities are popular for many reasons. First, they allow busy parents to leave their kids in a proactive environment where they can be productive. Second, they allow children to be exposed to more things; providing some great learning and growth opportunities. With the new year coming up, it’s a great time to amp up your after school programs, so your momentum follows into the next school year. Here are some ideas to make your after school program activities as great as they can be.
With sustainability being a major focus these days, there are many potential activities that boost awareness and help in your community’s efforts. First, teaching your students about the importance of sustainability can help them understand the detriments of global warming. Once the awareness is there, different activities can help drive home how to reduce ecological footprints. Check out the for lots of information for teachers and parents.
The maker movement is in full swing and TIME Magazine even has an article on . Activities that engage students’ interests in science, technology, engineering, math and the arts can help these children for years to come. A lot of what can be done in these programs depends on your - and ultimately the parents’ - budget. Learning how to build rockets, craft ceramics, leather working, and using 3D printers, all have varying costs. You’ll definitely have to be mindful of the budget people can spend but these programs should prove to be an effective after school program activity, especially when marketed towards the maker movement. For more info, check out these unique maker education resources for teaching and learning.
With technology permeating through all areas of our lives, being fluent in basic coding can help empower many of us to help understand the technologies we often take for granted. Additionally, this empowerment can lead to more jobs through technological opportunities. As jobs and recreational activities become more technologically advanced, it can be a great idea to teach children the basics of coding early.
- a computer science education nonprofit - has teamed up with Mark Zuckerberg to help teach everyone how to code. Utilize their website and all of their resources, to provide a coding workshop as one of your after school program activities. If you facility has a computer lab or participants have access to laptops, this can be low cost, high impact event. Consider even hosting an “Hour of Code” event, to involved your local community.
Getting help with homework is a great part of many after school programs. Think about hiring some staff with tutoring experience. Raising the academic bar at your after school program can help bring in more kids, as parents start to realize their children are improving their grades and schoolwork.
As parks and recreation professionals or gym teachers, this part usually comes second nature. Not only do physical activities help kids with their physical health, they also make them better learners. Active Living Research has a great infographic on how . Providing a wealth of physical activity opportunities in your after school program activities is highly recommended.
For some ideas on extracurricular activities for , check out this past blog post. Need some help in organization, streamlining and growing your after school programs? PerfectMind’s can help your organization save time and money, while increasing your community’s engagement.