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 402 resources. Displaying 10 resources per page.

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Not Just a Walk in the Park: Efficacy to Effectiveness for After School Programs in Communities of Concentrated Urban Poverty

Published in Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, this journal article examines a model for mental health consultation, training, and support for publicly funded recreational afterschool programs in communities of concentrated urban poverty. The model was designed to improve children’s academic, social, and behavioral functioning. The authors assessed children’s mental health needs and examined the feasibility and impact of intervention on program quality and children’s psychosocial outcomes in three afterschool sites, compared to three demographically matched sites that received no intervention. Findings revealed high staff satisfaction and feasibility of intervention, and modest improvements in observed program quality and staff-reported children’s outcomes.



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Diverse Learners
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Afterschool Thanksgiving Activities

The National Afterschool Association has pinned several Thanksgiving-related activities on their Pinterest Board. The pinboard includes community service resources, reading and writing activities, and of course food-related activities.



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Academic Enrichment
NASA’s Exploration Design Challenge

Sponsored by NASA, the Exploration Design Challenge is an opportunity for students to research and design ways to protect astronauts from space radiation. The challenge is linked to NASA and Lockheed Martin’s development of the Orion spacecraft, which will carry astronauts beyond low Earth orbit to an asteroid or to Mars. Protecting astronauts from radiation on these distant travels is an important-and very real-problem that needs solving. There are four challenge categories: grades K-4, grades 5-8, grades 9-12, and individuals or groups.



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Academic Enrichment
10 Research-Tested Ways to Build Children's Vocabulary.

Developed by Scholastic, this short brief outlines 10 ways that educators can help students build their vocabularies. The brief explains each strategy, the research evidence that supports it, and provides suggestions for implementation. (Downloads as a PDF.)



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Academic Enrichment
Parent Communication Ideas

The National Afterschool Association has created a Pinterest Board featuring parent communication ideas. Pinterest is a pinboard-style photo-sharing website on which you can browse, save, and share ideas. The parent communication resources include ideas for parent resource centers, parent communication templates, and activities that parents can do with their student to support academic achievement.



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Family and Community Engagement
Messaging Resources

Every Hour Counts, formerly the Collaborative for Building After-School Systems, has developed a comprehensive set of messaging resources to help afterschool leaders discuss afterschool and other expanded-learning opportunities with stakeholders. They have resources to help afterschool professionals explain the role of expanded-learning in supporting student success, communicate about the impact of high-quality afterschool programs on attendance and graduation rates, academic performance, and social and emotional learning, and slides from a webinar addressing frequently asked questions about developing a message for your afterschool program.



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Family and Community Engagement
Early Warning Confirmed: A Research Update on Third-Grade Reading

This updated report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation underscores the importance of ensuring that children, especially those living in poverty or in impoverished communities, develop proficient reading skills by the end of third grade. The research in the report supports the link between reading deficiencies and broader social consequences, and it shows how low achievement in reading impacts an individual's future earning potential. The full report and an executive summary are both available on the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s website.



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Academic Enrichment
Family Guidebook Template

The U.S. Department of Education’s You for Youth team has collaborated with afterschool practitioners and leaders to develop a family guidebook template for 21st CCLC grantees. Creating a family guidebook offers a way for programs to inform families about policies and procedures, and it also helps families become more involved in afterschool activities. This template provides suggestions, in an outline form, of possible components to include in your program’s family guidebook.



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Family and Community Engagement
20 Ways To Use Twitter's Vine In Education

If you are looking for new ways to use technology in your afterschool program, check out the American Society for Innovation Design in Education’s blog. A recent post lists 20 ways that educators can use Vine-a mobile app that enables users to create and post 6-second clips-in education. Suggestions include applications for educators and projects for students.



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Technology
Ten Transition or Wait Time Games for School-Age Children

Did your students finish their writing activity 10 minutes early? Do you have some down time before the computer lab is available for your group? The National AfterSchool Association has some suggestions on transition or wait time activities to keep students busy. The activities vary in the amount of space and movement involved, allowing practitioners to find a game for just about every situation.



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Classroom Management

There are 402 resources. Displaying 10 items per page.

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Volunteers: Engaging, Training, Managing and Retaining (Two-Part Series)

Volunteers can strengthen a 21st CCLC by expanding a program’s offerings, increasing adult-to-student ratios, increasing student access to experts, and more. This two-part webinar series from the U.S. Department of Education’s You for Youth (Y4Y) team shows 21st CCLC professionals how to engage, train, manage, and retain fantastic volunteers in every type of geographic location. Throughout the series, participants hear from experts and program leaders on strategies for maximizing the power of volunteers.
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America After 3pm

Demand for afterschool programs has remained strong during COVID-19, with parents seeing programs as providing critical supports. The fourth edition of America After 3PM, an Afterschool Alliance report on parent satisfaction with afterschool programs in 2020, finds that demand for afterschool programs remains high while cost and access barriers to participation and inequities persist. In addition to the report and executive summary, Afterschool Alliance has provided resources like infographics and fact sheets to help afterschool programs share information about the demand, need, and support for afterschool programs.
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