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 458 resources. Displaying 10 resources per page.

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Reflections from a First-generation College Student

This video from the American Youth Policy Forum features the stories of several first-generation college students and graduates, and explores their challenges, sources of support, and recommendations for policymakers. A related article provides additional information on the types of support that helps first-generation college students make it to and through college and includes links to related resources. Afterschool programs can use these resources independently or collaborate with schools to determine how to best support the students in their programs.



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Topics
College and Career Readiness
Foundations for Young Adult Success

What qualities do children need to develop to be prepared for success in adult life? Drawing on research from several fields, University of Chicago researchers identify self-regulation, knowledge and skills, mindsets, and values. A developmental framework illustrates that some qualities are especially important to develop during certain stages of childhood. The report addresses how parents, teachers, and afterschool professionals can foster children’s growth in ways that lead to college and career readiness, healthy relationships, and engaged citizenship. Download the full report, a research brief, and a framework infographic from the Wallace Foundation website.



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Topics
College and Career Readiness
Wild Bird Club

The Wild Bird Club website features informative articles, Bird Brains Bird Identification Quizzes, a bird of the month feature-and several live bird cams! Supported by the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and the Pennington bird food company, the site’s offerings include activities for beginner, intermediate, and advanced bird lovers, as well as free newsletters from the Wild Bird Club and the Cornell Lab.



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Academic Enrichment
Ten Tips to Become a STEM Superstar

A successful STEM program requires specific facilitation skills that enable educators to replace teacher-led models with open-ended, student-driven inquiries that promote critical thinking. The National AfterSchool Alliance presents tips and resources to help afterschool staff grow their STEM facilitation skills to the superstar level by creating the right atmosphere of discovery and support for STEM learning and success.



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Topics
Academic Enrichment
Providing Successful Afterschool Math Enrichment

Afterschool mathematics experiences can help students develop mathematical competencies and a positive attitude toward math.Yikes, math! is a blog post from the National AfterSchool Association┬áthat provides afterschool practitioners with tips for extending math learning beyond the school day.



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Topics
Academic Enrichment
The Language of SEL

What terms are used to describe the array of non-cognitive skills children need to develop for success in life? Market researchers commissioned by the Wallace Foundation looked into the linguistic landscape of more than 40 terms, how often they were used, and how motivating they were to educators, policymakers, parents, and afterschool leaders. The firm found that terms like “21st Century Skills,” “whole child development,” “soft skills,” and “character” were seen as unclear or had negative connotations, but found that “social and emotional learning” and the related term “social-emotional and academic learning” were familiar to all stakeholder groups. Download the research findings as a presentation slide deck from the Wallace Foundation Knowledge Center.



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Topics
Social-Emotional Learning
The Crisis of Connection for Adolescent Boys

By late adolescence, boys often speak about losing the close male friendships of early and middle adolescence and they reveal feelings of loneliness and isolation. These research findings, as well as research linking friendships with mental and physical health and well-being, inform a video presented by Youth.gov. The Crisis of Connection for Adolescent Boys video can be viewed in full-length format or five short segments. Discussion guides for professionals and families support use of the video in a variety of training settings.



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Topics
Social-Emotional Learning
National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments

The National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE) helps schools and communities contending with factors that adversely affect the conditions for learning, such as bullying, violence, and substance abuse. In addition to training and program measurement services supporting school climate improvement, the website provides free products, tools, and the latest research findings useful to stakeholders across several youth-serving systems. Visit NCSSLE’s Guides and Training Products page for resource packages on building and promoting safe and supportive learning environments. The NCSSLE website is operated by American Institutes for Research under a U.S. Department of Education contract.



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Topics
Social-Emotional Learning
Serving English Language Learners Afterschool

The journal of the Mid-Western Educational Research Association has published “Serving English Language Learners Afterschool,” an evidence-backed commentary article on English learners (ELs) and afterschool. The authors explain the unique opportunities of afterschool programs to benefit EL youth and review strategies that programs use to help ELs succeed. Among the conclusions: All afterschool programs, even those challenged by limited resources and access to bilingual staff, can implement research-proven strategies to support the achievement of EL youth.



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Topics
Diverse Learners
Promoting Positive Pathways to Adulthood

Pathways RTC works to improve the lives of young people with serious mental health conditions through research and training. Resources include Promoting Positive Pathways to Adulthood, a 10-module training series designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of service providers across a variety of fields who work with youth and families facing mental health challenges. Free registration is required, and participants have the option of participating in data collection surveys to further the organization’s research efforts. CEU credits are also available.



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Topics
Diverse Learners

There are 458 resources. Displaying 10 items per page.

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Afterschool in the Time of COVID-19

Afterschool programs faced numerous challenges due to COVID-19. However, they were able to persevere and provide care for many students. In Afterschool in the Time of COVID-19, the Afterschool Alliance shares the results of a survey of afterschool programs across the United States. According to this survey, 57% of afterschool programs during Spring 2021 extended their in-person hours to accommodate youth, families, and virtual learning schedules.
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Counter-Storytelling in the Science Classroom

It is crucial that all students feel represented in their classrooms, including Black and Brown students. Achieve the Core has released an article describing how educators can support students of color and help them become more involved in STEM through connected and interdisciplinary sciences lessons. Examples include connecting to community issues such as systemic racism and the environment through project-based learning that focuses on science and historical figures like Henrietta Lacks.
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