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May 2022

Iowa Afterschool Alliance News
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Save The Date for the Impact Afterschool Conference

Our annual Impact Afterschool Conference will be held at the Blank Park Zoo this year! Mark your calendars for September 22 & 23, 2022 and keep an eye out for more details on how to register coming soon. 

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Let's Show the Nation How Iowa Does STEM in Afterschool! 

Iowa Afterschool Alliance is a part of the Million Girls Moonshot, helping out-of-school time programs as they increase the quality of STEM learning opportunities for all young people, especially for underserved and underrepresented youth.


Million Girls Moonshot seeks to re-imagine who can engineer, who can build, who can make. It will inspire and prepare the next generation of innovators by engaging one million more girls in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) learning opportunities through afterschool and summer programs over the next 5 years.  

Every state is asking afterschool and summer programs to share more about how they do STEM. Please join this important effort! Your answers will help us to better understand how we can best support afterschool and summer programs statewide. The survey should take 5-10 minutes to complete. Everyone who responds will be entered into a drawing to win one of ten $100 Visa gift cards. Click here to take the survey! 


America After 3PM

Promoting Healthy Futures: Afterschool Provides the Supports Parents Want for Children’s Well-Being is the fifth report in a series of publications that examines findings from the 2020 edition of America After 3PM, a pre-pandemic national household survey of more than 31,000 parents of school-age children. It takes a closer look at parents’ perceptions of afterschool programs, their priorities for their children, and whether, prior to the pandemic, afterschool programs were supporting the healthy development of the children they serve and were positioned to do so going forward. This report also tracks changes over time, comparing 2009, 2014, and 2020 America After 3PM survey results to identify gaps in supports and areas of opportunity for policymakers and communities to ensure that young people have the necessary resources to persevere through the pandemic and emerge on the other side healthy, happy, and hopeful. Read the full report here.

Promoting Healthy Futures Report
America After 3PM Data Dashboard

AmeriCorps Summer Ladders Applications Open

Know someone interested in working with a summer learning program? AmeriCorps Summer Ladders applications are now open. The Summer Ladders AmeriCorps members will help build capacity of summer programs by developing and facilitating new, high quality activities that promote increased social, emotional, math, science, and reading proficiency. Members are placed in summer learning programs across the state and serve from the end of May through mid-August. Summer Ladders members receive $4,000 in stipends for living expenses over the summer and a $1,300 education award that can go towards qualifying loans or current educational expenses upon completion of their term of service. Check out a brief description of the position here, but note that these vary slightly depending on the program. Please contact Britney Appelgate at bappelgate@sppg.com for questions or more information.

Summer Ladders Positions
Power of Us Workforce Survey: Calling All Youth-Serving Professionals and Volunteers

Every person who works with young people is committed to helping them thrive. On athletic fields, in afterschool programs, in libraries, in faith-based institutions, youth-serving professionals and volunteers are making a difference every day. Through the Power of Us Workforce Survey, youth-serving professionals and volunteers can contribute to a national effort to explore, define, and elevate their profession. Take the survey today!
Take the Survey Today!
Policy Update
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Afterschool for All Challenge is Back! 

As most Congressional offices are only accepting virtual meetings, Afterschool Alliance is holding a series of virtual advocacy events over the week of May 16 to make the case for sustained investments in afterschool and summer. Join one or more virtual advocacy events by clicking here to register. 

Tuesday, May 17 2-3:30 p.m. | Federal Opportunities for Afterschool Briefing 

Join us to learn more about how to demonstrate to Congress that ARP investments in afterschool and summer are paying off and make the case for increased on-going federal investments.

Wednesday, May 18 | Afterschool Call-In/Email 

Supporters of afterschool will reach out to members of Congress about the importance of afterschool and summer opportunities and why ongoing federal support is essential to help youth thrive.

Thursday, May 19 2-3 p.m. | Afterschool Tweetstorm 

Supporters of afterschool will reach out to legislators via Twitter.

Register for a Virtual Advocacy Event
Grant Opportunities
Youth Service America's 2022-2023 Partner Grants

Youth Service America’s 2022-2023 Partner Grants seek to engage 50+ students in service or service-learning activities. With generous support from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, YSA will award Afterschool Grants of up to $500 each to support youth-led service or service-learning opportunities in up to 60 afterschool programs. Afterschool coalitions or multi-site programs are encouraged to apply and may be eligible for multiple grants. Applications close May 20, 2022.

Learn more and apply here.

Michael and Susan Dell Foundation Grants

The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation collaborates with a range of organizations focused on creating opportunities for children and families living in urban poverty, with a deep emphasis on measuring impact. $50,000 grants are available for organizations with a focus in education, health and wellness, or family economic stability. Funding will be put towards project support or efforts to scale. Learn more about the grants and how to apply here.

Learn more and apply here.

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Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers

Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) is an applied research and development program with goals to advance the equitable and inclusive integration of technology in the learning and teaching of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) from pre-kindergarten through high school. The program’s objective is to support all students’ acquisition of the foundational preparation in STEM disciplines. Preparation for the current and future workforce is increasingly dependent upon the application and use of technology and computing. Learning and teaching must be reimagined to better represent the diverse composition and perspective of our nation’s people and be expanded to encompass all pathways for students to receive a high-quality STEM education. A highly proficient and diverse technological and computational STEM workforce is needed to advance new discoveries in science, engineering, and technology in the service of the nation. The ITEST program is one way the National Science Foundation is responding to the challenge and opportunity to provide all students with equitable access to a STEM education related to the technical and scientific workforce.

Learn more and apply here.

STEM Opportunities

Brokering Youth Pathways: A Toolkit for Connecting Youth to Future Opportunity

This toolkit from the Hive Research Network shares ways in which various out-of-school educators and professionals have approached the challenge of brokering. We provide a framework, practice briefs and reports that focus on a particular issue or challenge and provide concrete examples, as well as illustrate how our partners worked through designing new brokering routines in partnership with our research team. Check out the toolkit here.

Engineering Mindsets: Network Spotlight

Inclusion Spotlight

Why Inventing For Diversity and Inclusion is So Essential

What would the world look like if there was more diversity and inclusion in inventing? Over the past few years, academic research has identified significant disparities in the rate at which people obtain patents. Women (especially African American and Hispanic women), people of color, and individuals from lower income families obtain patents much less often than their counterparts. Learn more and read the Forbes article here.

Equity in Math Class: 5 Tips for Teachers

Ways to Build Equity into Your Math Lessons discusses how equity and social justice play a critical role in math instruction. Click here to learn more.

Remembering the Child: On Equity and Inclusion in Mathematics and Science Classrooms

The North Central Regional Education Laboratory (NCREL) addresses equity and inclusion in STEM classrooms as a critical issue in a paper that includes six effective practices for equity. Click here to learn more.

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Utilizing IF/THEN Collection 

The IF/THEN® Collection is a free digital library with photos, videos, posters, and more, featuring diverse women STEM innovators – all available for educational and other non-commercial use. You’ll find thousands of assets showcasing inspiring women whose jobs include training Olympic athletes, creating cosmetics, exploring space, working with animals, and designing everything from buildings and museum exhibits to electronics and medical equipment. Don’t know where to start in the IF/THEN Collection? Here are some tools to help you! 


Mizzen By Mott Moonshot Connection

Mizzen By Mott App

The Mizzen By Mott app delivers inspiring and engaging activities that spark learning in young people. Supported by the Mott Foundation, Mizzen is available at no cost to afterschool professionals! Encourage partners to download the Mizzen By Mott app to access STEM activities at your finger-touch! You’ll find it in Mizzen here.

Featured Activities & Playlists 

  • Playlist: Helping the Planet for 3rd-5th Grade at Home Tour - This playlist allows younger students to go outside and learn about ways to help the environment.
  • Playlist: Outdoor Activities for Middle School - This playlist is all about getting outside and trying some STEM outdoors for middle school youth. Activities include building a mini greenhouse, egg drop and making a kite.
  • Module: S.INQ Up Earth and Space Guide - Earth and space is an inquiry and exploration-based curriculum that uses hands-on activities focused on the relationship between the earth, the solar system, and human impacts on our global environment. Best for grades 6-8th.

Professional Development Opportunities
Libraries are instrumental in bringing high-quality STEAM experiences to their communities. Join us Tuesday, May 17, 2022 from 1 p.m. - 2 p.m. to learn about resources and opportunities specifically designed for libraries. In this webinar, we are joined by representatives from NASA's Universe of Learning, The National Citizen and Community Science Library Network, and Leap into Science who will share about resources and opportunities that support STEAM programming at libraries. Register today!

Webinar: The M in STEM: Making Math Meaningful

This webinar will focus on engaging and supporting youth in mathematics. We will learn from an AAAS IF/THEN® Ambassador who uses mathematics to positively impact society and share best practices and resources to help make the M in STEM meaningful and accessible in afterschool. Join the webinar on Thursday, May 19, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. Register here.

ACRES May Cohort: Asking Purposeful Questions  

Questions are the beginning of a path towards discovery, imagination, and STEM exploration. How can we help youth expand and clarify their thinking and develop their reasoning through the questions we ask them? This module is a great way to train new summer staff on how to facilitate STEM learning. Experienced educators also love being part of a cohort as a way to connect with other educators across the country, to learn new lesson plans and to reflect on practice. This is our introductory module and a prerequisite to other opportunities. *The expectation is that you will be live at all three sessions and an active member of this coaching cohort. Stipends are offered to participants who complete feedback surveys before and after a module. Cohort dates and times are: 9:00-11:00 a.m. on the following Thursdays 5/26, 6/9, 6/23. Click here to register today! 

ACRES is a nationally acclaimed coaching program that builds knowledge and skills so after school educators, librarians and anyone who works with youth in out-of-school settings can confidently facilitate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) experiences for youth. More information found here.  

National Center on Afterschool and Summer Enrichment and the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning: Addressing the Needs of Out-of-School Time Leaders 

This professional development module developed by the National Center on Afterschool and Summer Enrichment (NCASE) in collaboration with the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning (NCECDTL) addresses several aspects of Out-of-School Time (OST): history of the field, children and families' needs, workforce needs, and qualities and responsibilities of an effective OST professional. Please note: login is required for module access. If you do not have an ECLKC account, you can register for one. Access the module here.

Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers 2022 Summer Symposium July 19-21, 2022

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) announced the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) 2022 Summer Symposium. This event, hosted by OESE’s Office of School Support and Accountability, will convene virtually on July 19-21, 2022. This year’s theme is “Strong You, Strong Me, Strong Community.”

The Summer Symposium features successful strategies that state education agencies (SEAs) and their grantees can use to implement and manage all components of a 21st CCLC program. Attendees will hear from nationally recognized speakers during plenary sessions and work closely with education experts and peers during interactive workshops. SEAs and grantees will gain valuable perspectives on afterschool issues and receive important updates about the 21st CCLC program. To learn more about the summer symposium here.

Millions of urban children and teens lack access to afterschool programs that provide rich opportunities for growth, learning and fun. One possible solution is to coordinate the work of programs, government agencies, private funders and others involved in afterschool programs—that is, build an afterschool system that is greater than the sum of its parts. Key components of afterschool systems include efforts to improve program quality and collection of data to inform decision-making.

​​Browse reports and other resources the Wallace Foundation provides for insights into making high-quality afterschool programming more readily available to urban young people.

Out of School Time Professional Development Center

The Out of School Time Professional Development Center provides Out of School Time training to OST professionals. The classes provide in-depth curriculum and certificates. If you or your staff are interested in signing up for courses visit the Out-of-School Time website. Check out the entire course catalog here

Great Content on Y4Y!

You 4 Youth is a free online professional development site that is designed to support 21CCLC program staff but is a valuable tool for any afterschool professional looking to build their skills! Recently, Y4Y has rolled out a whole module on literacy. Click here to register.

Afterschool Alliance Webinars

The Afterschool Alliance offers webinars on a wide range of topics, from policy and the new Every Student Succeeds Act, to STEM and Social-Emotional Learning. Find out more on their webinars website

Iowa Child Care Training Registry

Find professional development for school-age programming on the State of Iowa Child Care Training Registry on topics ranging from health and safety to developmentally appropriate programming. Find out more online.

National Afterschool Association PD Resources

NAA provides afterschool professionals with resources to stay up-to-date on the latest topics in afterschool and summer learning. Find out more on their website here

Resources for STEM Programming

The Center for the Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE) provides background information that is useful for the development of STEM programming. Find out more on their website.


The Afterschool Tech Toolkit aims to empower afterschool professionals and educators with strategies and training so they can provide students with access to technology outside of classroom hours. It includes training modules on getting started, training staff, accessing technology, and devices, and more. Take a look at the toolkit here.  

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Need technical assistance? Access to materials? Professional development or trainings for your team? Please visiwww.iowaafterschoolalliance.org or email all inquiries to iaa@sppg.com
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