Student-Centered Learning in Afterschool: Putting Students' Needs and Interests Firstby Diana Delfin
The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, presents a new issue brief highlighting different ways in which student-centered approaches to learning are incorporated into afterschool programming. The beauty of this type of learning is that there is no wrong way to create and expand student-centered, individualized opportunities. Moreover, teachers and caring adults in the community can work together to secure safe places for youth to pursue their own curiosities. However, whether or not students have access to this approach to learning depends on the intention of the program and staff.
For example, YouMedia in Chicago, Illinois, is an afterschool space designed with the intent to engage high school students with digital technologies. In collaboration with the Chicago Public Library and Digital Youth Network, students are free to engage in the activities that interest them most while simultaneously developing their digital literacy skills. The program’s innovative techniques have caught the attention of local media outlets and was even recently recognized by President Obama for its successful model of youth engagement.
For more examples of afterschool programs expanding access to student-centered, individualized opportunities across the nation, check out the issue brief. Share your thoughts and join the conversation on our Facebook and Twitter pages.