Developing your after school enrichment programs should be an ongoing process. You want students, teachers, coordinators and parents to be engaged and proud of what the after school curriculum does for the student body.
This should not be your typical afterschool program. You want excellence. Make sure the classes are keeping the kids engaged. Work with the community to gather ideas and implement necessary changes that enhance the personal development of your students.
We have compiled five strategies that will help you create more engaging, stronger and more diverse after school enrichment programs.
Encourage Parent Feedback
Parents need to be active partners with teachers and administrators in order for kids to succeed. Feedback from parents is essential to building a flexible and fun enrichment program that serves the needs of the whole school community.
Establishing clear lines of communication with parents and encouraging them to offer input can strengthen a district’s relationship with the community. Parents can offer significant insight into what kids are interested in, which will in turn help you develop a strong after school curriculum.
Offer Physical Classes That Target Mind & Body
Gym class during the day is great way to introduce large groups of kids to physical activity. But for more athletic students, targeted and specific programs can be necessary. After school programs such as Taekwondo, karate and yoga foster different kinds of mental strength and physical ability than your standard game of kickball. The discipline and focus that come along with martial arts or yoga can foster strength and coordination gains and improve mental abilities, which can be a boon to a student’s academic performance.
Mix In Loads Of STEM
One of the first steps in creating challenging enrichment programs is to fill them up with plenty of science and math. Programming tutorials, video game design and web development are just some of the subjects that students can get excited about. Younger students can develop a passion for hands-on science with fun-focused “mad experiment” type classes, full of working volcanoes and bubbling beakers.
After school enrichment programs can make time for learning about the practical applications of the algebra that kids are drilled on during the school day.
Develop The Whole Student
One of the newest trends in education is make sure kids are growing as individuals, not just as students. While the traditional school day can be structured to support academic success and development, after school enrichment programs can go beyond that.
Programs that bring together teams of students to work on building a robot or starting a business may be diverse in content, but they can improve team-building and encourage collaborative behavior.
Social and emotional development matter just as much as academic development. That sentiment is spreading throughout the national educational community.
Outsource the Management
Your budget is probably stretched thin. School districts always are. And many times, the hardest items to fund in-district are extracurricular clubs. Let Flex Academies take over the management of afterschool enrichment programs.