Illinois Quality Afterschool Resource Bulletin

Spring 2018

The Illinois Quality Afterschool team at American Institutes for Research has compiled this list of resources to help you and your staff provide high-quality 21st CCLC programming. The Resource Bulletin brings you the latest information on afterschool research, best practices, tools, conference proceedings, policy briefs, professional development tools, and activities. We hope you will share this list of resources with your staff.

Program Management

The Growing Out-of-School Time Field

A new book, The Growing Out-of-School-Time Field: Past, Present, and Future, looks at how the out-of-school time (OST) field has evolved and matured over the past two decades. The Afterschool Alliance has hosted two webinars to present topics and authors from the book. Part I explores positive youth development, supporting children from underserved communities, and the role of research in the field. Part II looks at professional development and where the OST movement is headed in the future.

Working with ADHD

Afterschool professionals may have resources to support students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but do they know how to help staff members with ADHD be successful? This blog post from the National Afterschool Association provides insights on how adults with ADHD can work with the disorder and be focused in the workplace.

Afterschool Matters

The latest issue of Afterschool Matters, a peer-reviewed journal of the National Institute on Out-of-School Time, has a variety of articles to inform and educate your afterschool team. Topics include equity and inclusion, mentoring, motivating students with video games, and how afterschool can affect students' sense of autonomy.

Diverse Learners

The Role of Sports for Socially Vulnerable Youth

Published in Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, this article examines the role of sports participation in the lives of socially vulnerable youth. Based on interviews with 10 young adults, the article describes sports participation as providing a safe place, a venue for learning life skills, an instrument for reaching goals, and a sense of purpose for socially vulnerable youth.

Social and Emotional Learning

Learning to Self Manage

A new research story from the Harvard Graduate School of Education examines students' abilities to exercise self-control. The story cites studies that found that voluntary agreements to restrictions or penalties are not enough to help students improve behaviors, even when students are motivated to change. The story suggests that educators work with students to co-create environments where students can engage in positive behavior and also give students a sense of agency in selecting strategies that can help them improve behavior.

Meta-Analysis of Follow-up Effects of Social and Emotional Learning

A new meta-analysis from Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning examines the effects of school-based social and emotional learning (SEL) programs. The study found some SEL interventions can have long-term positive academic and behavioral benefits for students.

Afterschool Enrichment

Intentional Activity Design

Intentional activity design can mean the difference between an activity that simply fills time and one that helps students achieve meaningful goals. This blog post from the U.S. Department of Education's Y4Y web portal includes guiding questions for creating intentional activities with a clear purpose, an activity design diagram, and links to other resources.

Academic Enrichment

Coaching Staff

This webinar recording from Click2Science explores coaching as a professional development strategy. Although the website focuses on STEM, the coaching activities and resources can be applied to a range of afterschool programming activities.

Plum Landing

The PBS Kids’ environmental science website Plum Landing offers activities and tools for students ages 6 to 9 to help build science skills. The site includes videos, activities, games, and standards-based tools for educators.

STEM Educators Academy Research Brief

This research brief from ExpandED Schools reports on findings from the organization's STEM Educators Academy. Piloted in 2013–14, the initiative included joint professional development at premiere science institutions for school teachers and afterschool instructors. After returning to their schools, participants team-taught STEM activities that connected school day and afterschool learning. Recommendations in the brief include encouraging collaborative teaching, using data to drive professional development, and allowing time for teaching teams to plan.

Family Engagement

Family Engagement Virtual Institute

The U.S. Department of Education's Y4Y web portal is offering a family engagement virtual institute for 21st CCLC grantees. The virtual institute is divided into three 1-week segments that are available on demand. Each segment includes a webinar recording, presentation materials, links to resources, and handouts.

College and Career Readiness

How ESSA and IDEA Can Support College and Career Readiness for Students With Disabilities

A brief from AIR's Center for College and Career Readiness outlines provisions under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that support college and career readiness for students with disabilities. The brief is also discussed in a webinar on supporting students through personalized learning that was hosted by the American Youth Policy Forum.


Empowering Afterschool Professionals for Digital Learning

A new publication by Policy Studies Associates, commissioned by the National AfterSchool Association, examines how afterschool can help close the digital learning gap that students from low-income families often experience. Recommendations include providing tools and training to afterschool staff; using coaching and online platforms for professional learning; fostering site-based collaboration and peer observation; and creating connections with organizations that support digital learning.

AIR Logo

American Institutes for Research
1000 Thomas Jefferson Street NW
Washington, DC 20007-3835

Illinois Quality Afterschool logo21st Century Community Learning Centers logoIllinois State Board of Education Logo

Copyright ©2018 by American Institutes for Research. This publication was developed by AIR in 2018 and was funded by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) with support by the U.S. Department of Education. The content does not necessarily reflect the views of the AIR or any other source. This publication is in the public domain. Authorization to reproduce and disseminate it in whole or in part is granted as long as appropriate acknowledgment is given.