New Webinars

More webinars to be announced soon!

Past Webinars

Introduction to Healing-Centered Sport

Date: Wednesday, May 25, 2022 @ 2:00 p.m. ET
Presenter: Center For Healing and Justice Through Sport

During the summer, physical activity and sports are an important way to help kids stay healthy, but sport can play a much deeper role in healing young peoples’ bodies and brains. This session will give a high level introduction on the unique ways that sport and physical activity can help kids heal from trauma and regulate stress. Participants will also learn about an ongoing summer learning cohort to engage deeper in healing-centered sport content!

National Summer Learning Week Virtual Splash Events

Dates: July 12 through July 16

In celebration of National Summer Learning Week (July 12 – July 16), we at the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA), hosted Virtual Summer Splash Events each day to shine a spotlight on the importance of summer learning and the many ways communities are supporting student success in school, out of school –and in life, this summer. See below for recordings of each event along with featured resources.

The Role of ESSER in Funding Summer Arts Opportunities

Date: Thursday, June 10, 2021

The American Rescue Act included $127 billion in federal funding for K-12 education, what some are calling an “historic” or “once-in-a-generation” opportunity. Funds from this legislation include dedicated percentages for summer learning. Join NSLA and the Arts Education Partnership to learn more about funding for arts-based summer learning, and spend time in role-alike small groups workshopping your ideas!

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Engaged: Using Summer to Connect with Students and Families

Date: Wednesday, May 26, 2021

  • Dr. Kristina Kyles-Smith, Executive Director, Two Rivers Public Charter School, Washington, DC
  • Emily Partin, Director, Family Resource Center, Grundy County Schools, Tracy City, Tennessee
  • Aaron Philip Dworkin, Chief Executive Officer, National Summer Learning Association
  • Hedy Chang, Executive Director, Attendance Works
  • Kwesi Rollins, Vice President for Leadership and Engagement, IEL

Engaging students and families over the summer break, especially those facing the biggest challenges from the pandemic, is essential for a successful return to school. Working together we can create a bridge to school an intentional approach that utilizes the summer to create connection, a feeling of belonging and excitement about learning.

Join this Attendance Awareness Campaign webinar to learn how schools, districts, public agencies and community partners can use their attendance and participation data to organize and tailor summer programming. Our speakers will share how they create opportunities for students to play and socialize with peers, engage in fun learning activities and practice the routine of showing up in person. You’ll learn how to use Covid-19 recovery funding to support summer programs and how to grow connections with expanded learning providers and other community partners. Summer is an ideal time to pilot and improve strategies that can be taken to scale during the year and to identify students and families who might need even more support to successfully transition to school in the fall.

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Summer Youth Employment Best Practices

Date: Wednesday, May 19, 2021

  • Audrey Henson, Founder & CEO, College to Congress
  • Rashaun Bennett, Director of Operations, National Youth Employment Coalition
  • Andrew Knoblich, Director, City of Charlotte Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program
  • Jenny Ward, Senior Vice President, Community Relations Manager Bank of America

Thousands of youth participate in employment and internship programs every summer. The goal of these programs is to guide youth to achieve personal goals and prepare for career paths through empowerment, education, and employment opportunities. Join us as we discuss how they are providing older youth with supportive and meaningful employment experiences and paid internships.

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Re-imagining Summer School: Lessons from Cadence Learning

Date: Wednesday, May 12, 2021
Presenter: Cadence Learning

Many school districts around the country are committed to re-imagining what summer school can look like and implementing summer learning that engages more children and youth, boosts academic achievement, and supports teaching and learning throughout the school year. Join Cadence Learning as they discuss their 2021 National Summer School Initiative. In person or virtually, they are partnering with districts and schools across the nation to deliver accelerated learning and vibrant enrichment activities this summer. Through their innovative model, participating teachers work closely with Cadence’s award-winning mentor teachers to deliver an exceptional learning experience where children can thrive.

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Creating Healing-Centered Summer Programs

Date: Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Presenter: Megan Bartlett, Founder, We Coach

The events of the last year- the immediate and long-term impact of a global pandemic as well as the renewed reckoning around our country’s dark history of racial injustice- only add to the host of overwhelmingly stressful circumstances many young people regularly face. The epidemic of trauma threatens both the physical and mental health outcomes of youth. Summer programs offer a necessary vehicle through which to address this urgent need.

In order to help summer programs amplify their impact, We Coach will provide a training to help youth development professionals, camp counselors, and coaches understand the impact of overwhelming stress, or trauma, on young people and equips them with skills to take action to support these young people. Their interactive training provides a foundation in trauma-informed practice and provides concrete strategies that adults can use immediately. The training explores three core ways that programs can maximize their healing potential: through the power of relationships, by encouraging physical activity, and creating manageable, resilience-building patterns of stress.

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Cultural Crossroads: Exploring the important intersection of summer program training & design with the critical need to address race, equity, and inclusion

Date: Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Presenter: Breakthrough Collaborative

Summer and extended learning programs play an important role in providing a safe space for student learning and exploration, especially for BIPOC students. This starts with a staff that is well-equipped with the social and emotional intelligence to support, lead and navigate this work. This webinar examines how organizations can best equip summer program staff with tools & training on race, equity and inclusion in order to meet student needs and maximize program impact this summer. Breakthrough Collaborative has assembled a Race Equity Diversity & Inclusion (REDI) Workgroup of program leaders, staff, former teaching fellows and instructional coaches to do just that.

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Time for Joy & Learning | Afterschool and Summer Recovery Town Hall with Sen. Chris Van Hollen

Date: Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Presenter: Maryland Out of School Time Network, NAACP Maryland State Conference

NSLA’s CEO, Aaron Philip Dworkin joined experts for a discussions about out-of-school time in Maryland including Senator Chris Van Hollen.

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Out-of-School-Time Programs This Summer | Paving the Way for Children to Find Passion, Purpose & Voice

Date: Wednesday, April 27, 2021
Presenter: Learning Heroes

From July 2020 to March 2021, Learning Heroes, Edge Research, and The Wallace Foundation partnered on a qualitative and quantitative research project among parents, teachers, and out-of-school time (OST) providers to understand how these audiences perceive the value of OST programs in children’s social, emotional, and academic development. The research highlights the unique role OST programs play in youth development, juxtaposed to home and school; how parents assess quality in OST programs; and the impact of COVID-19 for Summer 2021 and beyond. This new data can be used to inform communications, policies, and programs.

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Designing a Successful Hybrid Summer Program Model: Lessons from Aim High @ Home

Date: Wednesday, April 21, 2021
Presenter: Aim High

In 2020, Aim High made an extraordinary pivot to design and launch Aim High @ Home, an engaging virtual summer learning program that served 1,200 kids across the Bay Area. This summer, Aim High is building on that success and planning and developing a robust hybrid model to support 2,000 middle-school students at 16 campuses. Learn about their thinking and guiding principles, assessing the needs of families, partnering with districts and CBOs as well as our approach and program design. Much of what they are learning and designing will be part of Aim High forever.

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Fine Tune Your Engine for High Impact Summer Operations

Date: Wednesday, April 7, 2021

  • John Holt, Director of Partner Solutions, BellXcel
  • Kevin Ressler, President and CEO, United Way of Lancaster County (PA), Lancaster Partnership for Learning Equity
  • Olivia Walters, Foundation Outreach Coordinator, Steinman Foundation, Lancaster Partnership for Learning Equity

Research tells us that effective summer programs are highly dependent upon smooth operations. Planning for and executing summer programs is always a journey, but this summer’s trip will include unfamiliar terrain and less-traveled roads. Join BellXcel and the Lancaster Partnership for Learning Equity to learn strategies to gear up for your summer programs and fine-tune your engine for high-impact operations. In this virtual tune-up, you will hear how dedicated leaders in Lancaster County quickly engaged a variety of community partners, and then leveraged technology and tools for: family outreach and engagement; professional development; setting the tone for the first day; ensuring smooth scheduling and transitions; engaging in rapid-cycle continuous improvement; and assessing and reporting the impact as the program ended. You will leave with a clear map and a full toolbox improve the summer experience for students, teachers, staff, and families.

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Incorporating Interactive Nutrition Education into Your Summer Program

Date: Wednesday, March 31, 2021
Presenter: Common Threads

Join us to learn about how you can incorporate interactive nutrition education into your summer program. Common Threads’ Small Bites Program teaches PreK-8th grade students about nutrition and healthy cooking through a series of eight lessons combining nutrition and snack making. The lessons are aligned to local education standards. The lessons give students the opportunity to connect math, language arts, and science concepts to interactive experiences that provide tools to live longer, healthier lives.

Summer programs can easily incorporate Small Bites as a synchronous activity for in-person or virtual implementation. Small Bites is also available On-Demand with asynchronous activities for students to complete independently. At the end of each lesson students will be prepared to make their own healthy snack at home! Learn how you can become a Small Bites facilitator and gain access to the curriculum!

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$122 Billion for Education in American Rescue Plan: What it means for OST programs

Date: Thursday, March 18, 2021

  • Henry DeHart, Chief Operating Officer, American Camp Association
  • Tiffany Miller, Vice President of Policy, Communities in Schools
  • Ally Talcott, Legislative Counsel, National Summer Learning Association
  • Sage Learn, National Director Government Relations, Boys & Girls Clubs of America
  • Erik Peterson, Vice President of Policy, Afterschool Alliance

Congress recently passed, and the President signed into law American Rescue Plan, which provides $2 trillion in emergency stimulus funding to address the immediate financial needs of families, businesses, and the education system amidst the economic fallout from COVID-19. Specifically, there will be $8.45 billion available at the state level for afterschool and summer programs and $21.9 billion at the local level for afterschool and summer programs. With billions of funding coming down the pipeline, our partners joined us for a webinar to learn more about the allowable uses of funds, how to plan at the state and local level, and how the OST community can advocate for grants and contracts that support summer and afterschool programs.

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Ten Big Bets: Transforming Education During the Pandemic and Beyond

Date: Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Presenter: Dr. Gil Noam

The global pandemic has thrown our schools and OST programs into disarray. Teachers, parents, and children alike face uncertainty, while distance learning strains the human connections that make school meaningful.

In his new book, Ten Big Bets: Transforming Education During the Pandemic and Beyond, Dr. Gil Noam, a Harvard psychologist, researcher, and educator, shows that times of upheaval demand fundamental positive change. Rather than providing a technical manual or rigid prescriptions, Noam introduces ten core ideas for teachers, administrators, OST providers, and families to embrace both in the harrowing time of COVID-19 and in the years of reconstruction and transformation that will follow. Paying equal attention to the needs of children and the needs of educators, he advocates for strong academic challenge rooted in productive relationships, engaged learning, and positive mental health.

Join us March 10 when Dr. Noam will discuss these core ideas of what’s important, offering a clear path for all adults who dedicate themselves to children and youth so that each and every one learns and thrives. He will offer concrete, evidence-based recommendations that can be implemented immediately and over time.

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Entrepreneur Education: Harness students’ talents and passions

Date: Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Are you looking to harness the summer of 2021 to help students develop their talents and passions while becoming reengaged in their education? Entrepreneur education can help students strengthen their “entrepreneurial mindsets,” identify skills and interests, and explore ways in which students can apply their talents to solve problems in their lives and communities. Join this session to learn about entrepreneurial education as well as free k-12 resources and events that are flexible and can be facilitated in virtual or in-person environments, and also support other program goals such as social-emotional learning, career readiness, STEM, and service learning.

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During school closures, how will you reach and enroll students for summer?

Date: Wednesday, October 28, 2020
Presenter: Rod Hsiao, Chief Executive Officer, InPlay

Spring is always crazy busy in schools, and now with students learning from home, registering students for summer programs just got a lot harder. Program coordinators need a cost-efficient way to prioritize and recruit students who need support the most.

For years, InPlay has been working to solve this opportunity gap. In this webinar, InPlay’s CEO, Rod Hsiao, shares their experience working in 49 school districts, identify “the Big Five” barriers to access, and share their success helping districts and providers register students via text messaging.

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Supporting Youth Development through Outdoor Exploration

Date: Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Through hands-on activities and stimulating concepts, summer programs are supporting learning and character development while introducing youth to the importance of environmental stewardship. On Wednesday, October 14 at 2 p.m. ET | 11 a.m. PT we heard from summer programs committed to empowering students to be environmental scientists and stewards. Our guests included Chesapeake Bay Outward Bound School, and Thompson Island Outward Bound, and CityParks Foundation Green Girls Empowered by ING. Thompson Island and Green Girls are winners of the 2019 and 2020 Summer Learning Awards, respectively.

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Preparing for Back to School and Navigating Summer in the Time of COVID-19: What Do Parents Need and What are Out-of-School-Time Programs Able to Offer

Date: Thursday, September 24, 2020

  • Alicia Copeland, Youth Programs Director, Parks & People Foundation
  • Aaron Dworkin, Chief Executive Officer, National Summer Learning Association
  • Jodi Grant, Executive Director, Afterschool Alliance
  • Kujanga Jackson (KJ), Executive Director, TOUCH/TheZone

On Thursday, September 24, we heard from afterschool and summer learning education leaders and afterschool and summer program experts about challenges the field has encountered as the country continues to grapple with the pandemic, as well as how programs have adapted to the circumstances to rise to meet the needs of their communities.

The Afterschool Alliance and the National Summer Learning Association released findings from parents along with reflections from afterschool and summer program providers. View the webinar recording to hear what is top of mind for program providers and parents as the school year begins and recommendations for how to move forward during these difficult times.

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Good Nutrition Matters: Experts Share Tips, Quick Meal Tricks and Back to School Strategies for Learning Success

Date: Wednesday, September 16, 2020
Moderator: Kim Doleatto, Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Journalist and Mom

Featured Guests:

Good nutrition is more important than ever as kids and families head back to a new school year in the midst of a pandemic. Many experts have raised concerns that the absence of structured school days, recess, and access to school nutrition programs may negatively impact children’s wellness. The good news is that by increasing access to fresh foods and a good diet, children can focus better, overcome health disparities, and ultimately grow strong in body, mind, and soul!

In this special webinar, in partnership with Applegate® Natural and Organic Meats and FRAC, participants learned how to make the most of mealtime with chef and cookbook author Kate Winslow who demoed some delicious, and kid-friendly recipes. Attendees also received tools to help connect families in need to critical food services and School Nutrition Programs in their community.

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Fundraising During Covid-19

Date: Thursday, September 3, 2020
Featured Speaker: Nanette Fridman, Principal, Fridman Strategies

On September 3, we welcomed Nanette Fridman, founder of Fridman Strategies, to discuss how to reassess your fundraising strategy and refine your message in the context of COVID-19. We also covered what is “appropriate” regarding fundraising now and how you can balance the tension between being tone-deaf and bold during this chaotic crisis. Leave with action items to do now and over the next quarters. Bring your nonprofit fundraising questions!

Nanette Fridman is a strategist and coach for values-driven organizations and leaders. Her work focuses on governance, fundraising, strategic planning, and leadership and team development. Nanette’s clients range from small start-ups to large international organizations. She is the author of On Board: What Every Board Member Must Know About Nonprofits & Board Service and Holding the Gavel: What Nonprofit Board Leaders Need to Know. Before founding Fridman Strategies, Nanette was a corporate attorney in Boston, MA, and also a national field director for an advocacy organization in Washington, DC.

Learning and Teaching Antiracism in Expanded Learning Programs

Date: Tuesday, August 18, 2020
Featured Guests:

Description: Across the nation, many schools and programs have had to adapt creatively to ensure children and families have access to high-quality summer learning programming. On Tuesday, August 18, the National Summer Learning Association, Generation Teach, and San Diego Unified School District explored agile and creative expanded learning programs that have elevated student voice, identity development, and courageous conversations around race and social justice. From the use of art as a form of protest to nurturing the next generation of diverse teachers, these programs shared teachable moments to create equitable expanded learning opportunities all year long.

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Don’t Let Your Passion for Your Non-Profit’s Mission Burn You Out

Date: Wednesday, July 29, 2020
Featured Guest: Faun Zarge, Principal, Faun Zarge Training

Description: Working for a non-profit organization can be deeply gratifying, but the fire that keeps you motivated to serve your organization’s mission can also burn you out. Non-profit professionals must navigate the tricky terrain of supporting not only their colleagues, but also board members and other lay leaders who may not fully understand the day-to-day challenges of a non-profit. In order to prevent burnout and turnover, and to increase long-term commitment to the organization, it is essential to provide non-profit employees with the tools necessary for sustainability. In the session, participants learned:

  • How to mirror the best practices of well-resourced organizations, even without a large budget;
  • Strategies for effective communication and expectation-setting between professional staff and lay leaders;
  • Best practices for setting limits and boundaries; and
  • Approaches for ensuring the long-term well-being of each individual and the entire team.

Faun Zarge is an employee burnout and resilience expert who teaches clients how to reduce burnout, navigate a multitude of work/life issues, and bring their A-game to every personal and professional role they play.

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Mental Health and Youth Development: Priorities for the Summer and Beyond

Date: Thursday, July 16, 2020
Featured Guest: Dr. Gil Noam, Director of The PEAR Institute and faculty member at Harvard University

Description: This summer, more than ever, it will be important to pay attention to the social-emotional health of young people. On July 16 we hosted a discussion on mental health and youth development featuring Dr. Gil Noam, Director of The PEAR Institute and faculty member at Harvard University. During the webinar, Dr. Noam discussed what students have gone through these past months and how to address the deprivations and opportunities associated with social isolation. He also shared an example of an assessment tool that focuses on student voice to understand youth’s social-emotional strengths and challenges and can track student experience during the summer and into the fall. Guests had an opportunity to learn how to join a cohort of summer programs that will go into depth with some of the ideas presented in this webinar.

The PEAR Institute is a national leader on the continuum from social-emotional development (SED) to resiliency to mental health.

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Leading in a Time of Change: Leadership Lessons from Nonprofit Leaders of Color

Date: Friday, July 10 – Celebrate the Future Leaders of Tomorrow (College and Career Readiness)
Moderator: Dax-Devlon Ross, author, educator, non-profit executive, equity consultant and journalist with a focus on social justice

Description: On Friday, July 10, NSLA hosted a conversation moderated by Dax-Devlon Ross focused on nonprofit leadership and how we can we think collectively about moving organizations forward in this moment of COVID-19 and the Black Lives Matter protests.Dax-Devlon Ross is a reporting fellow at Type Investigations, the author of five books and an award-winning investigative journalist who covers social and criminal justice. His work has appeared in Washington Post Magazine, Time and The New York Times. He was awarded the National Association of Black Journalist’s Investigative Reporting Award for his coverage of jury exclusion in North Carolina courts.

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Mizzen by Mott and Inspire Youth Leadership and Entrepreneurship

Date: Friday, July 10 – Celebrate the Future Leaders of Tomorrow (College and Career Readiness)
Featured Speakers:

  • Scott Mann, Director of Education and Training, VentureLab
  • Jason Ricci, Product Strategist, Tminus11
  • Carlos Santini, Executive Vice President of Programs, After-School All-Stars

Description: Product strategist Jason Ricci and content partners, VentureLab and After-School All-Stars, took participants on a behind-the-scenes demo of the new Mizzen by Mott app and its powerful content on youth leadership and entrepreneurship. VentureLab’s and After-School All-Stars’ curricula are among the exciting learning content, Pro Tips and program tools featured in Mizzen. Through support from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, this all-in-one tool is free to summer and afterschool programs that are empowering young people everywhere.

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Fun & Healthy Summer Recipes with Applegate and Celebrity Chef Kate Winslow

Date: Thursday, July 9 – Eat Healthy and Grow Strong to Win at Wellness
Time: 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET
Featuring: Applegate Chef and Food Stylist, Kate Winslow

Description: Applegate®, the nation’s leading natural and organic meat brand, joined us as the official sponsor of the Eat Healthy and Grow Strong theme day on July 9th and co-hosted a virtual cooking demo featuring Applegate chef and food stylist, Kate Winslow – author of Onions Etcetera: The Essential Allium Cookbook and former editor at Gourmet magazine.

Relive this Yummy Demo

Leveraging STEM to Keep Students Connected to Learning All Summer Long

Date: Wednesday, July 8 – Discover STEM and Soar (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)
Time: 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. ET
Featured Speaker: Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Innovation, Discovery Education

Description: Join NSLA and Discovery Education’s Vice President of Learning Communities and Innovation, Lance Rougeux, as he showcases the company’s Summer of Learning Initiative. STEM has the unique ability to engage students in learning, and while traditional STEM camps and other enrichment activities may not be available this summer, Discovery Education has created a plethora of resources leveraging the power of STEM that educators can use to keep students connected to learning.

This initiative, which includes unique STEM content, features a diverse collection of grab-and-go lessons and at-home student activities and relevant, on-demand professional development for educators. Together, these resources provide educators the materials they need to keep students engaged during the summer months and also helps teachers and administrators prepare for the 2020-2021 school year, no matter what it brings. Lance will share a live demo of their resources.

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When Schools Close: Harnessing the Power of Summer for Early School Success

Date: Tuesday, July 7 – Dive into a Book Adventure (Literacy)
Featured Guests:

  • Liz McChesney, Literacy Expert and Senior Advisor Consultant, Urban Libraries Council (moderator)
  • Aaron P. Dworkin, CEO, National Summer Learning Association (co-host)
  • Matthew Boulay, Founder, National Summer Learning Association(co-host)
  • MarbyShaw, Manager, Camp Good Sam
  • Mary Riggs, Chief Program Officer, Andy Roddick Foundation
  • Cara Schrack, Director of Education, Save the Children

Description: On July 7, we discussed current trends, resources and tips to #keepkidslearning and why this summer, in particular, is a critical time in the history of summer learning. Experts in literacy, STEM, parent engagement and the rural population shared how they are adapting their programs to ensure students have access to literacy resources and learning opportunities at home, in their communities and wherever they may be spending time while schools remained closed.

NSLA has long been a partner to the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading to support its focus on summer learning as a primary strategy to advance early school success. Recognizing that the learning slide which occurs when schools are closed, we have worked together to support local communities in developing high quality, comprehensive summer learning systems and programs and there are now dozens of studies confirming the positive benefits that are derived from these programs. This year, it is more important than ever to leverage the best practices of summer learning to keep kids engaged after the extended period of school closures and the unpredictable plans for the return to school this fall.

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Camp Khan and Pixar in a Box

Date: Monday, July 6 – Kick-Off Day
Featured Guest: Pamela Fox, Senior Content Creator, Khan Academy

Description: On Monday, July 6, Khan Academy shared details about Camp Khan, itsFREE virtual summer camp! This webinar covered the details of how Camp Khan can be used to help students prepare for success in their math classes this fall, build habits and mindsets for learning, and access fun summer activities––like Khan Academy’s Pixar in a Box lessons. We took a deep into a live virtual demo of Pixar in a Box, featuring Khan Academy’s Pamela Fox and discussed how parents and students can use Pixar in a Box to spark curiosity and creativity in learning this summer!

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Meet the Authors: New Literacy and STEAM Activity resources you can use this summer

Date: Wednesday, June 17, 2020
Featured Guests:

  • Dr. Matthew Boulay, Founder, National Summer Learning Association
  • Liz McChesney, children’s literacy expert and former Director of Children’s Services and Family Engagement for the Chicago Public Library System
  • Brett Nicholas, Director of Play and Learning at the Du Page Children’s Museum

Description: Looking for practical activities to put the fun and joy in summer learning this season? On Wednesday, June 17, 2020 at 1:30 p.m. we held a virtual “Meet the Authors” conversation featuring two new books designed to help young people, parents and program leaders navigate a summer like no other. Dr. Matthew Boulay, a visionary educator, leader, and advocate for children and families for over 25 years, shared easy-to-use, practical suggestions for parents from his new e-book, How To Keep Your Kids Learning When Schools Are Closed: Tips, Tools and Activities to Help Parents Discover the Power of Summer Learning in the Era Of Covid-19. Boulay’s flexible and creative approaches provide an excellent road map to keep kids learning during this summer and beyond.

Liz McChesney, children’s literacy expert and former Director of Children’s Services and Family Engagement for the Chicago Public Library System, and Brett Nicholas, Director of Play and Learning at the Du Page Children’s Museum, shared from their new book, Pairing STEAM with Stories, to showcase easy to use ways to incorporate literacy and STEAM activities together this summer.

Introduction to Apple’s Learning from Home Products

Date: Friday, June 5, 2020

Apple has a suite of free videos, apps, and books to facilitate remote learning. You are invited to a webinar to learn about Apple’s Learning From Home, resources your programs can use to create engaging learning experiences from anywhere this summer.

Operations Guidelines for Summer Camps, Programs, and Child Care

Date: Thursday, June 4, 2020
Featured Speakers:

With the onset of COVID-19, organizations will need to take extra precautions to ensure the safety of their campers and staff this summer. Join us as we review the latest national guidance and resources that have been release from the Centers for Disease Control, the American Camp Association, the YMCAs of the United States, the Office of Child Care, and the National Center for Afterschool and Summer Enrichment, including:

  • Field Guide for Camps on Implementation of CDC Guidance
  • Considerations for Youth and Summer Camps and Child Care, Schools, and Youth Programs
  • Guidance for CCDF Programs & Policy Makers
  • Child Care and COVID-19 Resources

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Fostering Family Engagement

Date: Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Featured Speakers:

Description: This summer, more than ever, families will play an integral role in make sure that youth have enriching and productive summer. Join us for a webinar June 3, as we explore strategies for engaging with parents and families. Learning Heroes will share the results from a recent survey of parents’ engagement in remote learning and their concerns for this summer. Springboard Collaborative will discuss how they have been able to empower parents in supporting their children’s learning. Also, DREAM will share how they stay connected with their parents.

Meet the Author: When Schools Are Closed

Date: Friday, May 29, 2020
Featured Guest:

  • Matthew Boulay, Ph.D., Founder, and Former CEO, National Summer Learning Association
  • Kim Doleatto, a mom and writer for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune

Description: Dr. Boulay, a visionary educator, leader, and advocate for children and families for over 25 years, will share easy-to-use, practical suggestions for parents from his new e-book: How To Keep Your Kids Learning When Schools Are Closed: Tips, Tools and Activities to Help Parents Discover the Power of Summer Learning in the Era Of Covid-19.

“When Schools Are Closed” draws on evidence from research, conversations with parents, educators, and policymakers, and on Boulay’s own insights as a father, former teacher, military veteran, and decades long champion of summer learning. Boulay’s flexible and creative approaches provide an excellent road map to keep kids learning during this summer and beyond.

Virtual Resource Fair

Date: Thursday, May 28, 2020

Description: Each year, thousands of youth gain valuable experience participating in enrichment activities during summer programs. But this year, programs find themselves need to find resources that can be accessed remotely. Join us for a Virtual Resource Fair to hear from enrichment partners who have updated their offering to fit a distance-based program. Featured partners will include: Read to Lead, Camp Invention, 220 Leadership, Istation, BOKS Kids, DC Scores, and Common Sense.

The Art of Online Teaching

Date: Thursday, May 28, 2020
Featured Speakers:

Description: One of the hallmarks of a high-quality summer program is the way in which it creates a “summer culture” that is different from the school year and promotes a sense of community. With the onset of COVID-19, many of us have been thrust into the world of virtual communicating and learning. But taking your program virtual this summer may not be as easy as downloading and broadcasting on the latest software platform. How can summer programs maintain a feeling of community and facilitate learning in a way that will keep kids engaged this summer, even at a distance?

This will be part 1 of a 2-part interactive series.

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Sport as a Healing Tool

Date: Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Featured Speakers:

Description: In addition to the physical benefits, sports play an important role in imparting character values and reducing mental stress and anxiety. With the rules of social distancing extending into this summer, how can programs continue to use the power of sport as a healing tool to connect with and support youth.

On May 26, we discussed sports in summer programs. Our speakers will touch on how sports can be used to build community, helping coaches and staff to prepare for this summer, and the role of families in lifting up the importance of movement.

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How College Access Programs are Helping Students Navigate This Summer

Date: Thursday, May 21, 2020
Time: 3:00 PM (ET)

Description: Senior year and graduation is a time that most high school students look forward to. Many summer programs have developed college access and bridge programs to help support youth through this important transitional period. But this year, millions of students have had that experience interrupted and face an uncertain future this fall. This webinar covers how programs are adapting to help older youth navigate this summer.

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Social Emotional Learning at a Distance

Date: Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Featured Speakers:

  • Sherrie Raven, Director of PSELI Implementation, CASEL
  • Julia Gabor, Mindful Founder, kid-grit
  • Dudney Sylla, Program Director, MENTOR

Description: Summer programs have been at the forefront of championing social emotional learning (SEL) in their work with youth. But what does this look like when staff are not able to meet with youth in-person. How can programs continue to support youth during this critical period? Join us May 19 at 3pm ET/ 12pm PT as we explore the importance of SEL of in youth programs in a COVID-19 era. We will hear from CASEL on the connection between SEL and out-of-school time programs, and representatives from kid-grit and MENTOR will share resources and strategies they have developed to support implementing SEL with youth this summer.

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The COVID-19 Slide and the Future of Summer Learning – Part II

Date: Thursday, May 14, 2020
Time: 3:00 PM (ET)
Featured Speakers:

Description: This coming summer will be more important than ever in helping kids recover from the current crisis. Join us May 14 at 3pm ET as we continue our conversation on the future of Summer Learning. We will hear from Adam Ezring from Collaborative For Student Success to share the results of their recent national survey of educators. We will also be joined by Alec Lee from Aim High and Dolores Raivzee-Bell from DeSoto ISD to share what they are doing to support summer learning in their communities.

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The Arts at the Heart of Summer Learning and Student Engagement

Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2020
Featured Speakers:

Description: Learning in and through the arts have the power to transform the lives of young people by elevating student voice and self-expression while fostering 21st century skills like critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and communication.

But how can providers continue to use the power of the arts in in a COVID-19 reality? On May 12, attendees heard how three programs are adapting their program offerings in order to continue providing arts enrichment to youth. We will be joined by Young Audiences of Maryland, Engaging Creative Minds in South Carolina, and the Bishop Arts Theatre Center in Texas.

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Making Summer Youth Employment Work

Date: Thursday, May 7, 2020
Featured Speakers:

Description: Each year, thousands of youth gain valuable experience working through Summer Youth Employment Programs (SYEP) hosted by cities across the country. These programs have the power to transform the lives of young people, particularly for undeserved youth. Through these jobs, young people receive job training, life skills, career development, and financial readiness. A survey of the National League of Cities, Mayors’ Education Policy Advisors Network showed that 70 percent of SYEP hosted by large American cities are moving forward but 30 percent are closing or struggling to keep their doors open. City leaders are on the frontlines of their community responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and supporting the 4.5 million students impacted by prolonged school closures.

Join us and the National League of Cities as we discuss strategies cities are using to keep their SYEP going and to support students entering a changing workforce. City leaders from Charlotte, NC and Boston, MA will share how they are tackling youth employment this summer in the midst of COVID-19. We’ll also hear from LinkedIn Learning on how their online platform can be used to support student skill-building.

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The COVID-19 Slide and the Future of Summer Learning – Part I

Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2020
Featured Speakers:

  • Karl Alexander, PhD, Academy Professor and John Dewey Professor Emeritus, Sociology, Johns Hopkins University
  • Matthew Boulay, PhD, Founder, National Summer Learning Association
  • Megan Kuhfeld, Research Scientist, Collaborative for Student Growth at NWEA
  • Bethe Tarasawa, Executive Vice President of Research, NWEA

Description: A recent NWEA report, The COVID-19 slide: What summer learning loss can tell us about the potential impact of school closures on student academic achievement, confirms that “achievement typically slows or declines over the summer months with generally steeper declines for math than for reading, and the extent (proportionally) of loss increases in the upper grades.” Their report projects that with the COVID-19 crisis, students may return in Fall 2020 with roughly 70% of the learning gains in reading relative to a typical school year, less than 50% of the learning gains in math, and in some grades, nearly a full year behind what we would observe in normal conditions.

This coming summer will be more important than ever in helping kids recover from the current crisis. Join us as report authors, Beth Tarasawa and Megan Kuhfeld, present their findings. We will also be joined by NSLA founder, Matthew Boulay, and Karl Alexander, Professor Emeritus of Johns Hopkins University, for a discussion on what the current educational circumstances mean for the measurement and evaluation of academic outcomes, how we might address the needs of the most vulnerable youth, and what may be needed for next school year and summer 2021.

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Reading Between the Lines: Building Equity through SEL and Literacy

Date: Wednesday, April 29, 2020 (ET)

Description: We all know how important it is to keep kids engaged around literacy during the summer months. But what will this look like for this coming summer with so many organizations facing the possibility of having to hold virtual programs? And how will we ensure that they remain engaged with the material while remote?

Join us for a discussion on literacy and social emotional learning April 29, at 2 pm ET. Our guests will include literacy expert and advocate, Pam Allyn, who will discuss strategies for successful learning at home. We also will hear examples from Texas and Wisconsin about planning strategies to continue to engage students in reading and building capacity for at home literacy this summer.

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COVID-19 Emergency Stimulus Packages: What it means for OST programs.

Date: Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Presenters: Ally Bernstein, Vice President, Bernstein Strategy Group, Sage Learn, National Director Government Relations, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Erik Peterson, Vice President of Policy, Afterschool Alliance

Description: Congress recently passed, and the President signed into law on March 27th, the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provides $2 trillion in emergency stimulus funding to address the immediate financial needs of families, businesses, and the education system amidst the economic fallout from COVID-19. Specifically, for k-12 education, it includes $13.5 billion in flexible funds that can be used by SEAs and LEAs on a wide range of activities, including afterschool and summer learning programs, which are cited in the law. Additionally, the package includes $3.01 billion for an emergency Governor’s fund for states to use on a wide range of activities to address the pressing education needs, including OST programs.

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Supporting Climate Change Education in Your Summer Program

Date: Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Presenters: Rachael Van Schoik, Science Action Club Manager, California Academy of Sciences, Christine Tomlinson, Youth Programs Manager, Wilderness Inquiry, Mike Tritchler, San Diego Unified School District

Description: Young people, more than ever before, are turning their attention to the effects of climate change and the importance of environmental stewardship. In this webinar we will hear from summer programs that are already committed to empowering students to increase their knowledge and understanding of the impact of climate change. Join us to hear ideas and resources you can use with your program this summer. We will also share how your students can participate in a video essay competition this summer to share what they doing to limit the impacts of climate change and influence others to take action.

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Expanding Teacher Practice – The Promise of Summer Learning for Job-Embedded SEL Development

Date: Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Presenters: Christine Baines, Senior Manager Professional Development & Quality and Bryan Hall, Senior Director, Evaluation, BellXcel

Description: Research demonstrates that adults learn best when able to test and apply new strategies in real-world environments. Summer affords teachers the opportunity to engage in concrete experiences, try out new approaches and techniques, and reflect with peers to develop insights into what works (The Aspen Institute, 2018; Schonert-Reichl, 2017). A recent study suggests that BellXcel Summer educators believe that the professional learning they engage in as part of BellXcel Summer is influencing their confidence and attitudes toward the school year, and their practice in key areas such as growth mindset and promoting positive behavior (Bellwether Education Partners, 2018). In this webinar, we’ll explore how best to leverage summer environments to advance teacher development and SEL skills, as these results suggest that summer may be under-utilized as a learning lab for educators.

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Shaping Summer Experiences: Opportunities to promote healthy development and well-being for children and youth

Date: Wednesday, February 19, 2020
Presenter: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Report Committee

Description: With support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Wallace Foundation, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine convened a committee of experts in 2018 to study and prepare a report on the state of the sciences, and how summertime experiences affect school age children across education, health, and safety. Released in late 2019, the report put forth a number of recommendations to inform federal, state, local, and organizational decision-makers on developing programs and policies to support the healthy development and learning of all children during the summer months. Committee members will join the webinar to speak about some of the recommendations, what action practitioners can take, and areas for future research.

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Are You Ready to Grow?

Date: Thursday, February 6, 2020
Presenter: Jose Oromí, Executive Vice President, Horizons National

Description: Using strategies that are focused on partnerships and long-term success has allowed Horizons to expand in cities across the country, including Atlanta, Bridgeport, and Chicago where several other organizations are doing amazing work to address the significant needs of students living in poverty. Through lessons learned in each city, leaders from Horizons National will present the strategies and tactics ensuring a program is ready to embark on growth and sustainability; board development; fundraising; identification of new partners; learning from best practices from existing sites/programs; establishing and facilitating operational goals; and identifying local champions.

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Summer and Afterschool in the 2020 Presidential Race Briefing for Media

Date: Wednesday, January 29, 2020
Presenters: Rachel Gwaltney, VP of Policy and Partnerships, NSLA, Crystal Brown, National VP of Youth Development, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Jennifer McCombs, Director, Behavioral and Policy Sciences Department and Senior Policy Researcher, RAND Corporation, Emily Richmond, Public Editor, Education Writers Association – moderator

Description:Summer and afterschool programs are core to the 2020 presidential candidates’ education agendas with continued investments needed to improve the conditions for children and families during the critical summer months. This briefing aims to increase your knowledge on the role of summer learning and afterschool programs in advancing educational outcomes and healthy development for our nation’s young people with highlights that include:

* Discussion of why summer matters to children, families, schools, and communities
* Recommendations from the new National Academies of Sciences report: Shaping Summertime Experiences
* Funding implications for summer and afterschool programs within the recent 1.3 trillion FY20 budget deal by the House and the Senate
* National models of summer success stories

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Summer Reading: Weaving a Tapestry of Support

Date: Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Presenter: Beth Duda, Director, Suncoast Campaign for Grade-Level Reading at The Patterson Foundation

Description: During the webinar, Beth Duda will discuss how the Suncoast Campaign for Grade-level Reading’s (SCGLR) Suncoast Summer Reading Challenge brought five sectors: individuals, nonprofits, businesses, government and the media together to transform summer into a time of learning gain and how other communities can experience that same level of success.

The presentation also features the Harwood Institute’s time-tested principles and techniques, which complement principles from Creating the Future, an organization co-founded by social scientist Hildy Gottlieb. These insights will help participants understand that how we work together can be as important as what we do. Effective collaboration requires hyper-attention to communications with internal and external stakeholders. Examples of SCGLR communications alignment will be shared.

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Part I – Getting to Work on Summer Learning & Summer Learning Toolkit
Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2019

This exciting webinar series covered Getting to Work on Summer Learning, Second Edition, by the Rand Corporation and the accompanying online Summer Learning Toolkit, with over 50 practical tools and planning resources to help school districts and their partners design and deliver high-quality summer programs. The report and toolkit draw on lessons from the National Summer Learning Project, launched in 2011 by The Wallace Foundation.

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Part II – Summer Learning Toolkit, A Deeper Dive: Keys to Staffing & Professional Development
Date: Thursday, March 28, 2019

In this second webinar, we highlighted The Wallace Foundation’s new Summer Learning Toolkit—a great resource to use for whatever stage of planning you are in with your summer programming! We also took a closer look at staffing and professional development to examine how to hire and train the best possible staff that suits the specific climate, culture, and goals of your summer program.

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Part III – Summer Learning Toolkit–A Deeper Dive: Creating Site Climate and Culture
Date: Thursday, April 11, 2019

Summer learning programs offer the chance for kids to stay safe and remain engaged during the out-of-school-time months and build both academic and social and emotional skills, as they explore all that your program has to offer. This third and final webinar showed participants how to establish and foster a positive site climate that creates the foundation on which successful youth and staff experiences are built. Participants explored tip sheets, sample handbooks, and other materials housed in the Summer learning Toolkit.

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