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One for the books: Library and literacy partners in Lights On Afterschool

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One for the books: Library and literacy partners in Lights On Afterschool

In 2018, the Young Adult Library Services Association and the Science-Technology Activities & Resources for Libraries (STAR Net) as well as hundreds of local libraries and advocates for children’s literacy came together to celebrate the work they do every day to engage children and young people in engaging out-of-school time learning.

Moreover, 366 events declared that they were participating in the Campaign for Grade Level Reading. A collaborative effort by foundations, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities across the nation, the Campaign for Grade Level Reading works to ensure that more children in low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career, and active citizenship. The Campaign focuses on an important predictor of school success and high school graduation—grade-level reading by the end of third grade. Afterschool and summer learning programs are natural partners to advance the Campaign’s initiatives, as additional tutoring help, homework completion, and reading activities are integral parts of many programs’ curricula.

For the second year in a row, libraries and afterschool-library partnerships were one of our top themes for Lights On Afterschool. Here are a few of our favorite events featuring libraries:

  • In Arkansas, the Eureka Springs Community Center, in partnership with the Eureka Springs Carnegie Public Library, will hosted a carnival for Lights On Afterschool. The event featured an inflatable planetarium, with presentations by a student outreach group from the University of Arkansas. Additionally, there were dance performances from local troupes, a karate demonstration from Groves Karate studio, a collective painting activity, and booths with carnival games. Mayor Butch Berry emceed the event and issued a proclamation about the afterschool program.

 

  • The Dream Builders Learning Center afterschool program in Midway, Georgia partnered with the Hinesville Public Library and Keep Liberty Beautiful for an open house and garden party on the library’s campus. Hinesville Public Library facilitated a science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) program at which children made terrariums and discussed how things grow. Students also toured and planted in the Keep Liberty Beautiful garden they have adopted, while discussing recycling and water conservation. Parents discussed the importance and impact of afterschool programs with Dream Builders afterschool staff. The event featured games and crafts, and child advocate Demmentrice Jefferson served as the keynote speaker.

 

  • In Caruthersville, Missouri, the Caruthersville Public Library held an open house for children and parents. There were tours of the library focused on the children’s room to show parents what their children do after school. Students and parent played board games together.

 

  • Organized by Afterschool Ambassador Flo Trujillo, the Farmington Public Library in New Mexico hosted “7 Habits of Happy Kids.” Students each received a piece of a puzzle and together build a floor puzzle with a positive leadership message. Using a “Can-Do” Attitude, youth engaged in the 7 Habits and focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities at the library. Participants each received a Lights On strobe light, glasses, a wristband, and more from library staff and joined a Tippie Toe Parade (tour the library) following story time.

We are looking already looking ahead to the 20th annual Lights On Afterschool coming October 24, 2019. We hope you’ll join us – mark your calendar now!

From New York to San Francisco, America’s landmarks shined for Lights On Afterschool

Hernando De Soto Gateway to Memphis Bridge in Memphis, TN. Courtesy of Mary Graham. Last Thursday, as America celebrated Lights On Afterschool for the 20th consecutive year, landmarks across the country lit up in yellow and blue to support the afterschool programs that keep kids safe, inspire...

BY: Magen Eissenstat      10/28/19

20th Lights On Afterschool: 1 million people, 10,000 events, 1,000s of lightings and billboards

For the 20th Lights On Afterschool, afterschool programs, supporters, and youth took the nation’s only rally for afterschool to new heights. More than 1 million students, parents, educators, business and faith leaders, policy makers, community members, and more gathered at schools, parks,...

BY: Ursula Helminski      10/25/19

It's finally here: The bright, brilliant, record-breaking 20th Lights On Afterschool!

The lights will be on for afterschool programs today as students, parents, educators, business and faith leaders, policy makers, community members and others come to schools, parks, campuses, state capitols, city halls, museums, malls, and other venues to show their support for afterschool...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/24/19

Lights On Afterschool events showcase healthy eating, stress management & active lifestyles

Afterschool programs are key players in ensuring children’s well-being, addressing challenges such as hunger and food insecurity, managing stress, encouraging physical activity, and avoiding alcohol and drugs. Many Lights On Afterschool events this year are showcasing how afterschool programs...

BY: Lisa Lederer      10/22/19

New sample materials for Lights On Afterschool

There are just three more days until the 20th Lights On Afterschool, and we've got a few final updates for your celebration!  We've updated our news release, detailing some of the amazing events happening this year and the new report from Fight Crime: Invest In...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/21/19

10 bright ideas for a fun, easy Lights On event

The 20th Lights On Afterschool is only a few days away! There's still time to plan an amazing event, or to add another dimension to your plans for October 24. Visit our Last-Minute Ideas page to find easy, fun ways to celebrate. Here are a few examples to spark your...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/18/19

Reach out now to generate coverage of your Lights On Afterschool event!

For most afterschool programs, and for the afterschool field overall, Lights On Afterschool is the most visible time of the year. It’s a time when we use social and mainstream media to share the wonderful, fun, educational activities afterschool programs offer and the many ways they support...

BY: Lisa Lederer      10/15/19

City leaders & education advocates light up billboards nationwide for the 20th Lights On Afterschool

Adapted from a recent press release. Big, bright news for the 20th Lights On Afterschool! In partnership with the Afterschool Alliance, the National League of Cities, and the National Summer Learning Association—a coalition of afterschool supporters—joined with Clear Channel Outdoor...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/14/19

We challenge you: Raise your arms for afterschool!

We're just two weeks away from the 20th Lights On Afterschool. Join us in celebrating afterschool and summer learning programs that make a huge difference in the lives of our kids with the 3rd annual Lightbulb Challenge! Every year, we challenge friends of afterschool across the country to...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/10/19

P.S. ARTS celebrates Lights On Afterschool with SpongeBob

By Oscar Navarrete, program coordinator, Community, at P.S. Arts. P.S. ARTS is excited to collaborate with the Afterschool Alliance and Nickelodeon in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Lights on Afterschool and SpongeBob Squarepants’ 20th year on-air. Together, we are working to shine...

BY: Guest Blogger      09/19/19

From New York to San Francisco, America’s landmarks shined for Lights On Afterschool

Hernando De Soto Gateway to Memphis Bridge in Memphis, TN. Courtesy of Mary Graham. Last Thursday, as America celebrated Lights On Afterschool for the 20th consecutive year, landmarks across the country lit up in yellow and blue to support the afterschool programs that keep kids safe, inspire...

BY: Magen Eissenstat      10/28/19

City leaders & education advocates light up billboards nationwide for the 20th Lights On Afterschool

Adapted from a recent press release. Big, bright news for the 20th Lights On Afterschool! In partnership with the Afterschool Alliance, the National League of Cities, and the National Summer Learning Association—a coalition of afterschool supporters—joined with Clear Channel Outdoor...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      10/14/19

Join the Light Up A Landmark Challenge: Light up the night sky across all 50 states!

This October 24 marks our 20th Lights On Afterschool, and one of our brightest partners is back: for the 13th year in a row, the iconic Empire State Building will light up the New York City skyline in support of Lights On Afterschool! The national landmark will light the sky in blue and...

BY: Ursula Helminski      07/18/19

20 weeks to the 20th Lights On Afterschool!

We can’t believe it either—this October 24 will be our 20th Lights On Afterschool celebration! We’ve got exciting plans in the works – so many that we will be unveiling something new each week up until October 24, 2019. We’re asking you to join us and starting...

BY: Ursula Helminski      06/06/19

Landmarks aglow across the country for Lights On Afterschool 2018

Lights On Afterschool 2018 was marked by communities flipping the light switches of gyms, clubhouses, classrooms, and parks across America in an effort to provide a safe, supportive learning environment for children. Similarly, recognizable landmarks coast to coast recognized the valuable...

BY: Faith Savaiano      11/08/18

The biggest and brightest Lights On Afterschool yet

We celebrated by coding, dancing, cooking, drawing, reading, making music, sharing. We had book giveaways. Canned food drives. Hackerspaces and maker faires. Puzzle pieces that, together, form over-sized lightbulbs that fill gymnasium floors. Inflatable planetariums for students to explore....

BY: Ursula Helminski      10/26/18

Afterschool shines for the 12th year in a row

It’s that time in August when students’ backpacks wait eagerly by the door for the first days they’ll be put back into use after a couple-months hiatus. While these days on the calendar excitedly mark the return of the back-to-school season, they’re also an indicator that...

BY: Faith Savaiano      08/23/18

3 quick ideas for a healthy, happy Lights On Afterschool

Afterschool programs play many important roles in their communities, but one of the most powerful is the positive impact out-of-school time programs can have on the health of their students. From providing healthy meals and safe places to play outside, to supporting students’ mental and...

BY: Charlotte Steinecke      09/05/19

Host a sizzling Lights On event: A pitch contest

By Liz Nusken,Young Entrepreneur Pitch program lead at the Ohio Afterschool Network. Lights On Afterschool presents afterschool programs with an opportunity to showcase their fun, hands-on learning experiences to partners and members of the larger community. A Lights On live pitch...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/29/19

4-H is seeking Game Changers this October

By Kittrina Thompson, digital marketing manager, National 4-H Council, 4-H National Youth Science Day (NYSD) is an annual initiative inspiring kids everywhere to take an active interest in STEM topics through hands-on learning. Celebrations begin October 1, with participation across the country...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/22/19

KIND to celebrate Lights On Afterschool

By Daniel Lubetzky, CEO of Kind LLC. KIND is helping programs celebrate the 20th Lights On Afterschool this October 24. KIND will be on hand at about a dozen Lights On Afterschool events AND they’re donating 150 KIND products to Lights On Afterschool sites nationwide,...

BY: Guest Blogger      07/25/19

Guest blog: Partner with your local library for Lights On Afterschool!

By Megan Burton, STEM and Learning Supervisor at the Kitsap Regional Library in Washington State. “It is a real collaboration,” said Nicole Rawlinson, Teen Services Librarian at the Sylvan Way branch of the Kitsap Regional Library describing her work with the local Boys and Girls...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/30/18