Getting Started Tips
Want to start a full-time learning model in your community? Whether you’re a teacher, administrator, or community member, these tips will help you get started.
Do your research.
- View this site and others for ideas about what type of program you want to create, for which age groups, and during which hours.
- Review academic standards. Always make sure standards fold into the project.
- Talk with leaders from similar programs for background information.
- Document your needs and findings.
Recruit good people.
- Principals should play an active role.
- Recruit people with strong leadership skills and connections to the community.
- Ask colleagues, parents, and friends to help. Assign specific roles and tasks.
Develop a business plan.
- Highlight how the project benefits students.
- Refer to historically successful learning programs: Include essentials, such as the project goal, outline, funding ideas, resources, and directive.
Sell the project.
- Get the PTA and parent groups involved. Parents can participate directly (by becoming mentors) or indirectly (by recruiting their employers).
- Ask civic organizations and businesses for support.
Involve the students.
- Ask them to brainstorm their own full-time learning programs.
- Encourage them to take part in the plan.
Getting Started Links
- U.S. Dept of Education Afterschool Training Toolkit: Sample lessons, videos, and activities for developing after-school curriculum.
- CORAL Initiative: Methods and materials about Communities Organizing Resources to Advance Learning (CORAL), an initiative to create high-quality, out-of-school learning opportunities for youth in California.
- Center for Afterschool Education: Professional development, technical assistance, tools, and publications for building K-12 after-school programs.
- Partnership for After School Education: Child-focused organization offering after-school training programs and consultations for community leaders and educators.
- Mott Foundation -- New Day For Learning: Full report from the task force that inspired a "new learning" system and Edutopia's New Day for Learning site.