Resource Database

Photo of students outdoors reviewing a map together
The Illinois Quality Afterschool team has created this resource database to help you and your staff provide high-quality 21st CCLC programming. Browse or search the database to find the latest information on afterschool research, best practices, tools, conference proceedings, policy briefs, professional development tools, and activities.

Click on a topic or use the search box below to look for a listing:

There are 227 resources. Displaying 10 resources per page.

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Leap of Faith: A Literature Review on the Effects of Professional Development on Program Quality and Youth Outcomes
This literature review from the Robert Bowne Foundation examines research on the effects of professional development on afterschool program quality and youth outcomes. Author Sarah Hill observes that there is “no clear link between professional development and youth outcomes” in out-of-school time literature but notes that a research-based consensus has established the characteristics of high-quality professional development: “It is sustained over a period of time, coherent, content focused, and based in a community of learners.” The review suggests that afterschool professionals use these guidelines to shape their professional development offerings while calling for more rigorous studies on the link between high-quality professional development and youth outcomes. The review also contains an annotated bibliography of related research.

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Topics
Program Management
Learn to Speak “STEM-ish”
Want to help afterschool STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) blast off in your community? This two-part webinar series is grounded in the FrameWorks Institute’s recently completed study of effective messaging about afterschool and STEM. Learn how research-based communications strategies boost public support for afterschool STEM programs and how to avoid common communications traps that can weaken messages’ effectiveness. View the recordings for part 1 and part 2 of the webinar and find tools and resources on the Afterschool Alliance website.

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Topics
Academic Enrichment
Learning About the U.S. Presidency
Public broadcasting television station KLRU has created and curated online resources to help students learn more about U.S. presidents and the presidency. Resources include “60 second presidents,” short video clips about U.S. presidents, presidential portraits, biographies, speeches and addresses, information about the powers of the presidency, campaigns, and elections, and information about first ladies throughout history.

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Topics
Academic Enrichment
Lessons from an Evaluation Study of ExpandED Schools Model
This report by Policy Studies Associates (PSA) highlights some ways that schools and community organizations might come together to provide children with critical enrichment activities that enhance knowledge and expand horizons beyond the school day’s core academics. In evaluating the ExpandedED Schools national demonstration model, PSA examined the conditions that support or hinder implementation of an expanded learning day. The study concludes with recommendations and discussion questions to help schools and community organizations explore the possibility of entering a partnership.

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Topics
Afterschool Enrichment
Lessons from Blended Professional Learning: The Case of Family Engagement
Blended learning is an instructional approach that combines, or blends, different teaching strategies while incorporating an array of digital media tools both inside and outside of the classroom. This commentary from the Harvard Family Research Project addresses lessons learned from developing interactive blended learning tools for professional development. Features include offering opportunities for educators to practice effective communication skills and get real-time feedback; creating networks among educators; delivering content through multiple modalities; providing moderated, structured, and organized discussions; and putting educators’ experience at the forefront of learning.

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Topics
Family and Community Engagement
Libraries as Afterschool Partners
The National Afterschool Association presents Talk Tuesday as a resource for afterschool professionals to host relevant discussions with colleagues, staff, and community partners around topics that are engaging and important to your program. This particular discussion guide provides a brief article along with the discussion questions around the topic of how libraries can partner with afterschool providers to support youth in your community.

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Topics
Afterschool Enrichment
Lights On Afterschool
Celebrate the 16th annual Lights On Afterschool Oct. 22, 2015! During this nationwide event organized by the Afterschool Alliance, afterschool programs open their doors to families, friends, neighbors, and community leaders to join the celebration. Guests take part in activities and learn about the important role afterschool plays in the lives of children, families, and communities. Visit the Illinois ACT Now Coalition for information on Illinois Lights On Afterschool resources and the national Lights On Afterschool website for additional event planning and promotional resources.

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Topics
Family and Community Engagement
Linking Communities and Schools for Healthy Students
Research has proven that children are best supported when communities and schools work together for positive outcomes for youth. This includes conveying a unified message around healthy food and lifestyle choices. The Alliance for a Healthier Generation recently launched the Smart Food Planner, a tool that helps community organizations find ideas for healthy snacks, meals, and beverages for everything from events to everyday afterschool activities. The tool makes it easier for schools and community organizations to quickly find healthy options for a variety of events.

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Topics
Program Management
Making the Most of Expanded Learning in Community Schools
Community schools, collaborations between the school and other community resources and organizations, create a wide range of supports for children, youth, families, and community members—an approach to education that many districts and cities are adopting. This resource guide from ExpandED Schools examines the role of expanded learning in the New York City Community Schools Initiative and outlines promising practices in the initiative. It also offers recommendations to ensure that the broad network of Community Schools get the most out of their expanded learning efforts.

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Topics
Family and Community Engagement
Meeting the Unmet Demand for Afterschool and Summer Learning Programs
The federal 21st CCLC program provides key funding for afterschool programs. When other sources of funding become necessary, do you know where to look to augment your 21st CCLC grant? This blog post by American Youth Policy Forum provides a list of ways providers may wish to seek additional funding for programing. In using this list as a guide, 21st CCLC grantees will want to make sure that they are supplementing, and not supplanting, programming. Contact your ISBE grant consultant to ensure any additional funds procured are used within the boundaries of your grant.

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Topics
Sustainability

There are 227 resources. Displaying 10 items per page.

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Five Ways to Build Strong Relationships with Families

In a fast-paced culture, where families are busy and sometimes overwhelmed with job and school responsibilities, family engagement is still important. National AfterSchool Association’s professional development series, Talk Tuesday, offers new materials to guide an afterschool staff training session on family engagement. This resource focuses on five quick techniques that help afterschool practitioners build strong relationships with families.
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You for Youth College and Career Readiness Resources

Provided by the U.S. Department of Education’s 21st CCLC web portal, this You for Youth online professional learning course explores ways to incorporate college and career readiness into 21st CCLC afterschool and summer programs. Learn how to use existing activities to build and reinforce skills, work with stakeholders to strengthen your program, tap into various funding sources, and help families become more informed.
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