Learn24 Newsletter - February 4, 2021


Office of Out of School Time Grants and Youth Outcomes

Job Opportunities

Library Program Coordinator - District of Columbia Public Library

Program Coordinator College Readiness - University of the District of Columbia

Summer League Site Coordinator - Washington Nationals

Development Manager - Capital Partners for Education

Learn24 Events

Ask, Listen, Encourage - February 5, 2021 (Webinar)

Vital Connections - February 10, 2021 (Webinar)

Cultural Assumptions From Adultism to Caring - February 17, 2021 (Webinar)

Self-Care for Youth Workers - February 19, 2021 (Webinar)

Youth Mental Health First Aid for DC Educators - March 10, 2021 (Webinar)

Professional Development Opportunities

The Transformative Potential of Community-Based, Learner-Centered Ecosystems - February 12, 2021 (Webinar)

This Forum for Youth Investment session will focus on what it will take to seize this opportunity by harnessing the pre-COVID lessons of leaders across the country who are committed to activating a learner-centered future for education. Think about what it will take to transform pockets of innovation into fully supported ecosystems of learning during this session. Register here.

Equipping and Supporting Parents to Lead Change - February 16, 2021 (Webinar)

Register today to attend a workshop hosted by the Campaign for Grade Level Reading to access and explore the best science, ideas, and programs. Learn from an eclectic mix of presenters who bring knowledge from research, practice, and lived experience. More information can be found here

Promoting Mental Wellness in the Time of Covid - February 17 or February 20, 2021 (Webinar)

Join Center for Inspired Teaching as they explore fresh ways to tune into and address the needs of educators and those of students. Learn mindfulness techniques to ease anxiety, activities to assess the emotional wellbeing of students, and strategies for providing support to students who are struggling in ways beyond academics. Sign up to attend today. 

Building Partnerships Inside and Outside the Classroom - February 19, 2021 (Webinar)

CASEL , the Wallace Foundation, and district and community leaders from Palm Beach County have partnered together for a webinar to share findings about how school and out-of-school time partners can work together to align and implement SEL. Register here

Note: References to events, workshops, organizations, or activities do not serve as an endorsement or recommendation from the OST Office, Learn24, or the Government of the District of Columbia.

Upcoming Virtual Workshops from The Institute for Youth Development 

The Institute for Youth Development is committed to providing youth development professionals with an opportunity to gain practical skills that can be implemented in their interactions with youth immediately. This listing of upcoming workshops helps promote a positive environment with youth.

Register now! Space is limited. 

Help Families Locate Your Virtual OST Program 

Families are actively searching for programs and opportunities to engage youth beyond the classroom. Assist these families in their search by completing this questionnaire to have your program listed on the Learn24 program finder.

Community Opportunities

Applications Now Open for the 2021 Summer Youth Employment Program

Applications are now open for the 2021 Mayor Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (MBSYEP). District youth between the ages of 14 and 24 are encouraged to apply online at summerjobs.dc.gov. Applications will be accepted until Saturday, February 27, 2021.

In 2020, MBSYEP was able to continue during the pandemic by going online and providing six weeks of telework experience for approximately 9,000 youth. Employers who are interested in supporting young people through the Summer Youth Employment Program can learn more at summerjobs.dc.gov.

DC OST Coalition Survey: Share Your Experiences

The DC OST Coalition, coordinated by DC Action for Children, is launching a survey to gather information about the experiences of OST providers across the District, including how COVID-19 has impacted programs and what could better support the children and youth served. All organizations that provide OST programming in the District are invited to participate in this survey. Click here to take the survey. The deadline to submit survey responses is Friday, February 19, 2021. Email RDanylko@DCKids.org with any questions.

Please Note: This survey is being conducted by DC Action for Children and only they, not the Learn24/OST Office, will have access to the results. Individual results will not be shared or published. 

Resources from the Field

SEL Roadmap: Actions for a Successful Second Semester

Last month, The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) released a new brief that offers three strategies to re-examine efforts for a successful second semester. The three strategies that have been adapted from the SEL Roadmap include:

  • Partner with staff, students, families, and communities to examine data from the first semester.
  • Refocus on adults.
  • Maintain supportive learning environments and promote students’ SEL.

Download the Refocus on the SEL Roadmap: Actions for a Successful Second Semester here

Here Are 3 Top SEL Strategies That Can Help Improve Student Engagement Right Now

EducationWeek recently released an article detailing some top Social Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies that educators can implement into their programs to boost student engagement during this pandemic. The three key elements to serve as a guide to ensuring the "SELements" of student engagement are in place: 

  • Dreams Needs and Abilities (D.N.A.)
  • Conducting Empathy Interviews
  • Connect students with REAL people

Read the entire article here

6 Exercises to Get to Know Your Students Better—and Increase Their Engagement

This Edutopia article demonstrates ways to celebrate students' unique identities to help improve performance in the classroom and support connections. Students that have a deeper sense of self and purpose are better able to define their goals and stay focused on pursuing them. The six exercises include:

  • Reflecting on Experiences: 'Laws of Life' Essays
  • Exploring Identity - And Perceptions About It: Identity Charts
  • Learning Important Details: Student Inventories
  • Understanding Interests: Passion Blogging
  • Documenting Your Life: Movies, Photos, and Podcasts
  • Having Fun: Icebreakers, Games, and Accolades

Access the full article here.


Promising Practices

In the first newsletter of each month, The Institute for Youth Development will highlight a specific indicator from the Weikart Center's Youth Program Quality Assessment (PQA) on promising practices in the field.

By Shavonyuette Dotson, Learn24 Certified Trainer

Structure and Clear Limits

Structure and routines can help individuals maintain some control during times of unpredictability and great stress. Due to COVID, many students are juggling between virtual, in-person, or hybrid learning without a clear picture of the future. Youth programming with intentional design and defined limits can provide the proper supports that enable youth to feel safe within their environment, including the virtual environment. Environments with consistent structure and routine create space for youth to build trust, feel relaxed, and even engage more with the program. Emotional and physical safety is at the base of the Pyramid of Program Quality and is the foundation for creating and maintaining quality youth programming.

The Structure and Clear Limits Method promotes engagement and productivity within youth programming. When an environment is too structured, it can feel like an authoritarian environment that does not allow for youth voice. An environment with too little structure can often lead to lots of confusion with no productivity. The key to finding the right balance is by implementing the strategies of the Method. These strategies are divided into two categories:

Build Structure

  • Establish routines
  • Define goals or objectives
  • Create a space that works (be creative with virtual space)
  • Consistently reinforce the structure

Establish Clear Limits

  • Set clear, positive guidelines
  • Use rules to meet the needs of youth
  • Have high expectations for behavior
  • Communicate limits consistently

Research conducted by R.J. Marzano (2007) found that effective rules and procedures resulted in 23-28% less disruptive behavior. Strategies are easier to implement if they are built around the needs of the participants in the program. Asking youth open-ended questions is a great way to foster youth voice in the program and get to know the youth better and understand their needs. Surveys and needs assessments are also useful tools and can provide a framework that will allow programs to create structure in the program centered on specific needs.

Email Learn24@dc.gov for more information on how to request the Structure and Clear Limits workshop or similar youth development workshops.

Marzano, RJ (2007) The art and science of teaching: A comprehensive framework for effective instruction. Alexandria, Virginia: ASCD.


Funding Opportunities

Serve DC - The Mayor's Office on Volunteerism and Partnerships Funding Alert

Weekly newsletter of funding opportunities.

The Awesome Foundation: DC Chapter

The DC chapter of the Awesome Foundation is offering a $1,000 grant to nonprofit organizations that make DC more awesome. DC residents interested in improving the District of Columbia through arts, culture, and/or community experiences are encouraged to apply. The deadline to submit an application is February 14, 2021. The full application can be found here

The Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington is accepting applications to be a member of the 2021-22 Catalogue. The Catalogue for Philanthropy recognizes some of the best high-impact‚ community-based nonprofits in the Washington, DC region. Applications must be received by February 17, 2021 to be considered. Click here for more information, benefits, eligibility criteria, and areas of interest.

TEGNA Foundation Offering Grants up to 5K

The TEGNA Foundation Community Grants offers up to $5,000 in grant assistance to organizations operating in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area. Community Grants commonly support areas such as education, youth development, hunger, emergency assistance to families and individuals in crisis, and environmental conservation. Grant applications must be received by February 28, 2021 to be considered. Information on how to apply can be found here.

Events DC Community Grant Program

The Events DC Community Grant Program provides financial support to qualifying nonprofit organizations dedicated to supporting children through sports, performing arts, or cultural arts in the District of Columbia. The maximum grant amount is $25,000. Applications must be received by March 1, 2021. Apply here.

RiverSmart Schools Small-Scale Schoolyard Conservation and Teacher Training Program

The Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE) seeks eligible entities to help control, prevent, and remediate nonpoint sources of polluted runoff to District waters and the Chesapeake Bay by funding small-scale schoolyard conservation projects and training teachers to use these new schoolyard assets. The program also seeks to engage, educate, and empower District residents to become stewards of the District's waters and the Chesapeake Bay. The amount available for the project is approximately $65,000 for a 24-month period. The deadline to apply is March 5, 2021. Apply here.

Power of Youth Challenge: Youth Leading Racial Healing 

America's Promise Alliance has launched a new round of the Power of Youth Challenge: Youth Leading Racial Healing. The Challenge will provide $250 mini-grants to US-based projects led by young people ages 13-19 and the application will be open until April 30, 2021. More information can be found here

Learn24 rule

For resources and additional information on the District of Columbia Government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19), please visit coronavirus.dc.gov.

Questions or feedback, contact Learn24 at Learn24@dc.gov, or visit us at Learn24.dc.gov.

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