We are pleased to announce Phase 1 of the 2022 BOOST Conference Workshops. We will announce Phase 2 by the end of December. We look forward to seeing you in Palm Springs this April.

Tuesday, April 26

Pre-Conference Academies


Framework for Understanding Poverty
Dr. Ruby K. Payne, Founder, aha! Process, Highlands, TX 

Explore class differences and 10 actions you can implement in your classroom or program to improve the success of low-SES students. This workshop is based on Dr. Ruby K. Payne’s book A Framework for Understanding Poverty, which has sold more than 1.5 million copies.

Educators who participate in this training will:

  • Use concrete instructional strategies to help students from poverty
  • Understand hidden rules of economic class and effects on behaviors and mindsets
  • Develop stronger relationships with students to impact behavior
  • Reduce discipline referrals

Strand: Pre-Conference Academy; Program Design, Development & Quality

Click here to learn more about this Pre-Conference Academy.


Safe & Sound: ACES, Trauma-Informed Practices, and Wellness
Karissa Luckett, RN, BSN, MSW, Senior Clinical and Quality Operations Director, Safe & Sound, San Francisco, CA

Join the Center for Youth Wellness, a Program of Safe and Sound, for a full day, five-part series grounded in a deep commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion that creates better outcomes for children, families, and communities.

This Pre-conference Academy will include a holistic response to the critical and dynamic needs of our community during this unprecedented time around the following topics:

  • The Science of ACEs and Toxic Stress
  • Building Resilience with the Seven Domains of Wellness
  • Trauma-Informed Practices
  • Self-Care and Burnout
  • Relational, Strengths-Based Approaches to ACEs and Trauma

Strand: Pre-Conference Academy; Program Design, Development & Quality

Click here to learn more about this Pre-Conference Academy.


Fundraising Academy
Jack Alotto, Certified Fundraising Executive, Fundraising Academy @ National University, La Jolla, CA

The Online Cause Selling Accelerate is an online fundraising certificate program that teaches and empowers new and intermediate fundraisers to effectively identify, qualify, cultivate, and retain individual donors by building authentic, lasting relationships. Through the interactive, cohort-based training model, attendees will:

  • Connect and collaborate with their cohort peers
  • Explore effective prospecting and lead qualification strategies
  • Practice their pitch to successfully secure donor support
  • Redefine donor objections
  • Discover digital fundraising tools
  • Learn how to assess and approach different social styles
  • Better understand their ethical responsibilities

Strand: Pre-Conference Academy; Sustainability

Click here to learn more about this Pre-Conference Academy.

11:00AM - 5:00PM

How to Bring Healing-Centered Engagement to Your Out-of-School Time Program
Lee Porscha Moore, Ed.D., LCSW, Senior Trainer; Marquis Engle, Senior Trainer, Flourish Agenda, Oakland, CA

This session will focus on Healing-Centered Engagement strategies for after school, expanded learning, and out-of-school time professionals including what Healing-Centered Engagement is, why it’s important, and how to implement it. These strategies have been cultivated from over 30 years of conducting camps for youth of color and research from Dr. Shawn Ginwright, Flourish Agenda’s CEO. Join us for a session full of Healing and Inspiration.

Flourish Agenda is a national nonprofit consulting firm that works with youth of color, schools, youth-serving organizations, foundations, and local governments to build and implement strategies that allow young people to flourish.

Strand: Pre-Conference Academy; Program Design, Development & Quality

Click here to learn more about this Pre-Conference Academy.

Wednesday, April 27


22 Innovative Tools to Raise Our OST Game in 2022
Eric Rowles, CEO, Leading To Change, Huntersville, NC

Get ready for a LIGHTNING round of proven tools and strategies to raise your youth engagement game. We'll cover the BEST of technology (like a free gamification app for 2000 participants), program design (how to use the roller coaster method to life), and media (including FREE mashed-up mixes of today's music and movies), You'll leave with your head spinning, a listing of resources, and NEW ideas to take back to your program! Hold on as this presentation will roll at warp speed!
E, M, H, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality, Staff Leadership

Changing the School Climate: Addressing the Unique Needs of LGBTQ Youth
Mike Freeman, Program Supervisor, Los Angeles LGBT Center, Los Angeles, CA

Participants will learn ways to increase support for LGBTQ students, will be provided with opportunities to brainstorm issues on school campuses, and create action plans that uplift the needs and perspectives of LGBTQ youth. Effective adult allies can help youth gain a positive sense of self, preventing them from isolation, depression, and substance misuse. This interactive workshop will provide best practices that you can start using TOMORROW by creating safe spaces on campus.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Older Youth  

Finding the SPARK Beyond Trauma: Speaking to the Potential, Ability, and Resilience inside EVERY Kid
Brooke Wheeldon-Reece, President and CEO, The Spark Initiative/SPARK Mentoring Programs, Brandon, FL; Ashley Hunt, Director of Program Development, The Spark Initiative, Valrico, FL

There is a SPARK within every human being, regardless of their circumstances, that cannot be damaged (yes even after 2020). This SPARK is the birthplace of resilience, well-being, commonsense, intelligence, solutions, creativity, and innovation. This presentation will explore how, through a simple understanding of the mind, innate resilience is uncovered, and the stress resistance needed to overcome trauma is naturally formed.
E, M, H, MLA, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development, and Quality; Staff Leadership

Greater Than Yourself: Social Justice and Tween/Teen Art Programs 
Lee Shepard, Senior Director, Youth Development, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Atlanta, GA

An examination of Boys & Girls Clubs including Major Metro Clubs as well as Rural Clubs, who are leading the way in leveraging arts programs as a means for tweens and teens to explore activism and social justice. New approaches in youth voice and leadership will be presented through case studies with videos and testimonials from 3 Club organizations featuring visual, digital, and performing arts examples.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Play on Words – Elementary Literacy Games
Jane Felling, Consultant – Author, Box Cars and One-Eyed Jacks, Edmonton, Alberta Canada

Come prepared to play hands-on literacy games that are perfect for learning centers, cross-graded groups, regular and ELL students in your afterschool setting. Games integrate the use of literacy dice, word decks, and letter tiles. Concepts include: learning the alphabet and its' sounds, rhyming, and word families and patterns, vocabulary games, parts of speech, comprehension, and more. Gameboards shared ideas for journals.
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality

Providing Hope to Foster & Homeless Youth
Moderator: Michelle Lustig, Ed.D, MSW, Program Director, Foster Youth Technical Assistance Program, Los Angeles County Office of Education, Downey, CA
Panelists: TBD

Every year, thousands of youth age out of the foster care system challenging the stability and life skills to prepare them to live as productive adults. Many of these youth will find themselves without a high school degree and unable to secure gainful employment, which can lead to homelessness, poverty, and entry into the criminal justice system. In this session, participants will hear from former foster youth (ages 20-40) who will share who and what has helped them find success in the journey. Participants will also learn innovative approaches organizations are taking to protect foster care children and youth and provide hope to those who find themselves rapidly aging out of the foster care system.
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality

Revolutionizing Education by Helping Youth Develop the Mindset of Entrepreneurship
Dr. Sonia Toledo, Founder & CEO, Dignity of Children, Bronx, NY

Education doesn't need a change, it needs a revolution! In this groundbreaking workshop, Dr. Sonia Toledo will share ways to empower children and youth to discover their passions early and live from the heart while developing 21st-century skills and striving to make a difference in the world. She will provide strategies on helping youth develop the mindset of entrepreneurs that will help ensure they are able to compete in the fast-paced modern world of technology.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

SEL is Everywhere: Making It Work in Your Program
Robb Armstrong, Program Director, Dylan’s Wings of Change, Canton, CT; Ian Hockley, Executive Director/Founder, Dylan’s Wings of Change, Monroe, CT

SEL is the process through which we understand and manage emotions, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. Boiled down, this can be referred to as basic human skills. We all are using elements of this in our everyday lives. This workshop will use hands-on activities to spur conversations and discuss how to view your programming through SEL lenses and refocus the outcomes of activities you may already be using.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Skillastics: Physical Activity Made Simple
Jess Wadleigh, National Accounts Manager, Skillastics, Long Beach, CA

Is your staff overwhelmed? Is it impossible to motivate kids to move? The Skillastics® Program makes it easy for you & or your staff to organize, motivate & engage kids to move learn & love it! You’ll leave this session with an understanding of the Skillastics® Program & learn why it’s the #1 large group physical active resource used in over 25,000 AS & PE programs nationwide!  Also, walk away from this workshop with numerous FREE instant activities that you can implement immediately. 
Strand: Large Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership

Social Style Flexing: Versatility as a Communication Tool
Jack Alotto, Certified Fundraising Executive, Fundraising Academy @ National University, La Jolla, CA

Communication successes and missteps are often informed not just by what is being said, but by our social style. How do you receive and deliver information? What drives you to act? Learn the four social styles to answer these key questions so you can effectively adapt to build trust, facilitate meaningful conversations, and deepen relationships. Explore the concept of versatility and how it affects your ability to relate to others.
E, M, H, HE, MLA, DS
Strand: Harmony & Inspire SEL @National University 

Think Like an Inventor! Innovating Learning Cultures through Partnerships
Carlos Marquez, Program Development Specialist, Think Together, Santa Ana, CA; Christine Lawlor-King, Lemelson MIT Invention Education, Manchester, CT; Brenda Payne, CA Invention Convention, Santa Cruz, CA

Invention Education begins with students reflecting on their own lives and identifying problems they are passionate about solving. This compelling premise inspires students to design a solution that is empathetic in nature. Educators will experience 2 design challenges firsthand, demonstrating that agency and self-direction. Educators will review Invention Education as a vehicle for community building between schools, families, non-profits, local businesses, and out-of-school time programs.
Strand: Think Together


Becoming a Better Mentor
Marcus L. Strother, President & CEO, MENTOR California, Elk Grove, CA

Becoming a Better Mentor is for all adults looking for ways to support young people, especially people whose mentoring does not occur in programmatic contexts (i.e., mentoring that occurs naturally in community settings like neighborhoods, everyday interactions at schools, community businesses, and other environments where mentoring relationships are formed every day), and, we want to be sure it reaches as many people as possible!
E, M, H, HE, MLA, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development, and Quality

Brainball & Games, Games, Games
Tim Taggart, Senior Director, Palos Sports, Alsip, IL

Brainball is supported with 17 years of research improving Spelling, Reading, Math, and Fine Motor skill development. The games portion will cover many unique games that kids love to play that keeps them highly active and engaged while learning individual/team skills, strategy, teamwork, and motor skill development. 
PK, E, M, HS, DS
Strand: Large Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality

Building Consensus for Action Among LEAs and Juvenile Justice Stakeholders
Moderator: Deborah La Touche, Deputy District Attorney, Office of the District Attorney, San Diego County Juvenile Branch, San Diego, CA
Panelists: TBD

Join the conversation to ensure our educational system is a doorway to opportunity and not a point of entry to the criminal justice system. Learn from judges, law enforcement, and community leaders on how we can all be a part of the solution for our youth.
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality

Building Harmonious Relationships and Creating Inclusive Environments
Larryelle Phillips, Strategic Accounts Advisor for the Eastern Region of Harmony SEL, Harmony SEL @ National University, Charlotte, NC; Barbara Browning, Director, Harmony SEL, National University, Yulee, FL

Learn how to easily implement Harmony SEL into your learning environment with Harmony Third Edition! Based on the latest research in SEL, our new unit structure centers on building harmonious relationships, creating inclusive environments where all students feel valued and heard, and developing a sense of agency within their educational experience.  With Harmony Third Edition, you’ll be able to complete weekly lessons in just 15-20 minutes! Learn how to support teacher SEL with point of use access to Inspire Teaching & Learning modules. We will explore our expanding out-of-school-time offerings and the impact of Everyday Practices in personal and classroom goal setting.
Strand: Harmony & Inspire SEL @National University

Designing for Skills and Motivation: A Model for Youth Apprenticeship
Saliha Nelson, CEO, URGENT, INC., Miami, FL

Sustaining interest-driven learning and career exploration of teens is sometimes difficult. This workshop will help educators, youth development practitioners, and employment partners to create a learning experience that supports both skill development and sustained motivation. Participants will come away with both theoretical and practical methods to design a youth apprenticeship, which leverages project-based learning and self-determination. Take-aways include a 7-step design planner.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Older Youth

Engaging Families in Out-of-School-Time Programs
Edward Franklin, President/CEO, Voice of Hope Ministries, Dallas, TX

Out-of-school-time providers have a unique and special relationship with the families of the children that attend the programs yet often struggle with engaging the families in a meaningful way. This session will discuss that paradox and share six core strategies on how to foster effective family engagement.
PK, E, M, H, MLA, DS
Strand: Partnerships & Building Relationships

Making STEM & SEL Easy: Connecting Science Action Club’s STEM Teaching Toolbox to Social Emotional Learning Practices
Rachael Van Schoik, Science Action Club Manager, California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA; Lupine Reppert, Executive Director, California School-Aged Consortium, Pittsburg, CA

STEM and SEL enrichments are powerful tools for youth development but are often facilitated as separate activities. Connecting them helps staff see the entire afterschool ecosystem as a unified place for youth to thrive. In this interactive workshop, participants will practice STEM facilitation strategies from Science Action Club and connect them to SEL competencies. Participants will walk away with practical ways to connect programming activities for an enhanced youth experience.
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development, and Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Older Youth

Jason Lindsey, STEM Certified Educator, Science Multimedia Journalist, Host, and Freelance Meteorologist, Hooked on Science/STEMfinity, Paducah, KY; Bill Albert, CEO & Founder, STEMfinity, Boise, ID

Searching for a fun way to implement STEM in your classroom? If so, explore mind-blowing STEM investigations, which utilize everyday ingredients, with Jason Lindsey, aka “Mr. Science.” NO boring PowerPoint, just unforgettable, engaging hands-on STEM.
E, M, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Older Youth

Ready, S-E-T, Go, Building Culture of SEL- Learn How to Create a Culture of SEL by Supporting, Engaging, and Teaching
Katie Frazier, Social Emotional Learning Trainer, WINGS for Kids, Charleston, SC

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is not just for kids- in fact, it begins with the adults in this session. Participants will deepen their understanding of SEL and practice building their own SE skills through interactive polls, discussions, and activities. This framework helps participants critically think and brainstorm ways to foster a culture of SEL to create an environment that is S-E-T: Supporting, Engaging, and Teaching.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Schools Can’t Do It Alone - Why School-Community Partnerships are Key to Getting Kids Back to Thriving
Caroline Shaw, Executive Director, The Opportunity Project, Tulsa, OK; Paula Shannon, Tulsa Public Schools Deputy Superintendent, Tulsa Public Schools, Tulsa, OK

Hear from the Deputy Superintendent and an out-of-school-time leader about how bold, big initiatives are demonstrating just how critical and effective shared ownership of youth development can be. This session will highlight the current experiences of the Tulsa community as they work to advance whole-child, equitable learning environments. Speakers will share the innovative ways COVID relief funds are being leveraged to “build back better” in Tulsa.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Trauma, Poverty, Detached Parents, and Apathetic Students, PLEASE HELP ME!
Craig Boykin, Consultant, Craig Boykin LLC, Montgomery, AL

Poverty and trauma are all too common in America’s schools. What's rare, is an opportunity for educators to sit and absorb first-hand from a former at-risk student who dropped out, endured a mother abusing drugs, absent father, and learning disability. In this engaging session, participants will unlearn perceived fallacies about students from poverty. Craig’s trademark slogan, GED to Ph.D. is a concrete paradigm that educators should never give up on any student.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Turning Crickets Into Stories: Infusing Cultural Humility and Reflective Processing Practices for SEL Outcomes
Justin McGlamery, Chief Locus Focuser, Focus Your Locus Teambuilding Training & Development, Hartford, CT; Kamora Herrington, Founder & Visionary, Kamora's Cultural Corner, Hartford, CT

Have you ever had a group that seemed engaged in a great learning experience, but when posed a question, or “challenging topic”, or while processing reply with silence & the sound of crickets? We will discuss the intersections of SEL work, topics of race, class, & privilege, & how understanding & practicing Cultural Humility work engages a lifelong self-reflection & learning process that enables us to launch out of “safe space” into “brave space” to have challenging discussions.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Older Youth 

Using Trauma-Informed Care to Create Resilient Learners
Yvonne Paul, General Manager, Think Together, Santa Fe Springs, CA

Participants will engage in an experiential session that builds their understanding of brain plasticity, the impact of traumatic events and how the two intersect to inform behavioral responses in children. The session will include best practices to support practitioners in creating responses to better support students from a trauma-informed, compassionate lens and build their capacity to foster greater resilience and well-being.
Strand: Think Together

Thursday, April 28


#iAmImpact Healing Circles
Nathan Houston, Founder of #iAmImpact/Director of Training; Nathaniel Wilson, Transformational Coach, #iAmImpact/Center for Fathers and Families, Sacramento, CA

#iAmImpact is not a particular program or blueprint. #iAmImpact is an invitation to dialogue and an exploration of what a community needs to ensure all members strengthen and maintain healthy relationships. This workshop is highly interactive and will inspire you to impact.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Building a Culture of Curiosity for Program Staff
Shelby Feliciano-Sabala, Director of Data & Evaluation, Think Together, Santa Ana, CA

The need for closing the feedback loop with program staff is crucial. Participation in the evaluation process adds richness and depth that foster buy-in and program quality. Engaging program staff in the collection and sharing of data can typically be limited to management and most often decision-makers. Data Reflection Sessions (DRS) are a strong strategy aimed to involve program staff and collaborative organizational learning.
Strand: Think Together

Celebrating Women in STEM
Moderator: TBD
Panelists: TBD

Join us as we highlight women in STEM careers and gain more insight into their career journeys and what their experience has taught them. Our panelists will share the triumphs achieved and challenges faced by women working in science, technology, engineering, and math field(s) and how they champion diversity and commitment to closing the STEM gender gap for the next generation. 
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality 

Creating a Collaborative Restorative Learning Environment
Nathan Maynard, CEO, Restorative Group, Indianapolis, IN

The need for connection, belonging & community has never been stronger. This session from the co-author of Hacking School Discipline will focus on setting the stage for creating a collaborative & restorative learning environment. Participants will be given strategies to help students learn from & with others in a safe way that builds empathy among students. This will also help educators coach their students to work in an environment where students are creating & sustaining community in the classroom.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Elementary Math Games for Fact Fluency and Place Value Using Dominoes and Dice
John Felling, Consultant – Author, Box Cars and One-Eyed Jacks, Edmonton, Alberta Canada

Come prepared to play our newest games for Fact Fluency and Place Value. Participants will be using our student's favorite math manipulatives, Dominoes, and Dice. Participants will learn ways to differentiate games to meet the needs of all learners including ELL and special ed students. Gameboards, journal ideas, and student samples will be shared throughout. Come prepared to shake, rattle and roll your way to math success!
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality

Ice Breakers, Warm-ups, and ACTION! Team Games
Andy Tupy, West Regional Sales Manager, Gopher, Owatonna, MN

Gopher Sport will be leading participants through a workshop focused around a few of our newest activities! We won’t just be playing games though, we’ll also be showcasing some great classroom management and skill development pieces you can take home and implement in your class. Get ready to sweat, learn and have some fun!
Strand: Large Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Leadership Requires Resiliency, Relationships, and Reflection
Larry Taylor, Executive Director of Youth Development, YMCA of Greater Houston, Pearland, TX; Lisa Rice, Quality and Accreditation Advisor, Champions/KinderCare Education, Tucson, AZ

Learn how to apply social-emotional learning to develop your own and your team’s resiliency and emotional intelligence. Using the CASEL® framework and other research, participants will take back an individual and team plan based on trauma-informed SEL practices to improve relationships, teacher retention, and child outcomes.
Strand: Staff Leadership

Respect the Process: Examining Our Social Justice Perspectives
Dr. Bettina L. Love, Associate Professor of Educational Theory & Practice, University of Georgia, Athens, GA

Through interactive activities, this workshop will help participants examine their own perspectives of their social justice work and ideas about diversity, privilege, and intersectionality. Participants will gain a better understanding of how institutional power that reproduces injustice, social exclusion, and oppression, despite our best efforts, is embedded in our social justice work.
Strand: Master Class; Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Staff Leadership
($30 registration fee, click here to learn more about this Master Class)

SEL Game On: Coach-Mentoring Strategies for All Seasons
Veronica Calvo, Senior Manager of Partnerships for Inspire @National University, Harmony SEL @ National University, Chicago, IL; Shaina Ross, Senior Director of Programs at U.S. Soccer Foundation, Washington D.C  

Through sport, young people build important social and emotional skills such as teamwork, cooperation, empathy, and problem-solving. Sports give youth a sense of positive identity and a desire to give back to their team and community. Join Harmony SEL, Inspire Teaching and Learning, and the U.S. Soccer Foundation to learn a variety of coach-mentoring strategies to foster strong student-to-student and coach-to-player relationships.
Strand: Harmony & Inspire SEL @National University 

Taming Trauma: Building Resiliency
Robert Murphy, President, Comprehensive Discipline Solutions, Fort Washington, MD

This workshop explores the intersection of youth development, mental health, and trauma. Participants will learn the trauma identities, triggers, and learn resources available for students experiencing mental health and trauma. Participants will develop actions plans for immediate family and student support.
E, M, H, MLA, DS
Strand: Partnerships & Building Relationships; Older Youth

This Training Could Help You Save a Child’s Life
Dr. Patricia Dailey Lewis, Esq., Executive Director; Dr. Claudine Wiant, Director of Programs, Beau Biden Foundation for the Protection of Children, Wilmington, DE

Today's society is failing our children as we continue to see sexual and physical abuse perpetrated against the innocent as adults rationalize their own inaction. Afterschool programs must be a safe space for children that look beyond concerns about liability and put children first. In this session we will use case studies and discussion to help practitioners recognize and report signs of abuse and neglect and to encourage them to develop a community of protection at their organization.
E, M, H, MLA, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

With One Voice: How the Pandemic Spurred LA OST Provider Collaboration to Support Systems Change and Re-Center Young People
Moderator: Julee Brooks, CEO, Woodcraft Rangers, Los Angeles, CA
Panelists: Kim Richards, CEO, Boys and Girls Clubs of Carson, Carson, CA; Ana Campos, President and CEO, After-School All-Stars, Los Angeles, CA; Da 'Lana Walker, Senior Director, Los Angeles Conservation Corps, Los Angeles, CA

Newfound platforms to connect easily, no lost time to freeways, and a common goal of linking arms with organizers to help forward long-overdue change, brought nearly 20 afterschool providers together in LA. Collectively, CBOs addressed the compounding crises and, with funders and district leaders, plan for a future that could better serve communities with the most complex need and now have an infrastructure that can better deliver for the collective challenges and opportunities ahead.
Strand: Partnerships & Building Relationships


Be the Boss: Engaging Middle School Youth in Literacy and Leadership
Kwamara Thompson, Managing Director, Programs & Partnerships, Read to Lead (formerly Classroom Inc.), New York, NY

Participants will engage in a session where they experience firsthand interactive multimedia literacy strategies that activate youths' voice, choice, and agency. By the end of the session, participants will be able to incorporate one or more of the multimedia literacy strategies into their lesson planning and curriculum design to create safe, inclusive, and engaging spaces of learning.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Older Youth

Be the Spark: Nurturing Student Inspiration
Veronica Calvo, Senior Manager of Partnerships for Inspire @National University, Harmony SEL @ National University, Chicago, IL  

When a student is motivated to work toward a goal, it’s usually because somewhere along the line, they were inspired. This workshop will help educators nurture the spark of student inspiration that leads to motivation. We will identify tools and strategies to create a classroom environment that encourages student inspiration as we reconnect and rebuild in the coming year. Based out of the National University System, Inspire Teaching and Learning celebrates and develops inspirational educators through on-demand courses and resources at no cost. Through teacher training, Inspire supports social and emotional learning and inspirational instruction in the PK-12 classroom and in courses with our partner universities.
Strand: Harmony & Inspire SEL @National University 

Beyond the School Day: Maximizing College & Career Readiness Possibilities
Gloria Alday, Director of Older Youth, Think Together, Santa Ana, CA

This presentation will discuss how aligning with school day partner, AVID, can strengthen and impact learning supports in the out of school time. The impact of AVID strategies and philosophies can be multiplied by extending them into the extended learning/after-school space. The intended audience is any learning provider, school administration, and AVID partner interested in increasing the impact they have for college and career readiness by aligning with other student-support providers.
Strand: Think Together

Breaking Down STEM Stereotypes in Afterschool
Dr. Brenda Britsch, Sr. Research Scientist, National Girls Collaborative Project, Portland, OR; Dr. Lisa Regalla, CEO, Regallium Consulting, LLC, San Rafael, CA

Afterschool programs offer a unique opportunity for youth to engage in and identify with STEM in diverse ways, which is especially important for young women who face multiple barriers to STEM participation. This session will focus on strengthening afterschool programs’ efforts to provide equitable STEM learning opportunities, including key strategies grounded in an Equity and Inclusion Framework and activities that aim to facilitate positive STEM identity development.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

A Community-Developed Vision for Youth Thriving: Nashville's Path
Anna Harutyunyan, Chief Executive, Nashville After Zone Alliance /Nashville Public Library, Nashville, TN

Nashville After Zone Alliance, an OST intermediary system in Nashville, has advanced it's work of holistic youth development and engaged community stakeholders, youth and their caregivers in co-creating a roadmap for youth thriving. By engaging so many voices in our vision-setting for youth, we have addressed equity and elevated voices that might not be heard otherwise. We have done this work to orient our future investments and would like to share our positive experience with other communities.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Cultivating Creativity and Design Thinking with Young Children
Daniel Monterroso, Director of Staff Development; Deanna Galarza, Director of Leadership Development Regional Director; Katherine Lucero, Staff Development Coordinator, LA's BEST, Los Angeles, CA

All young people deserve to engage in activities that ignite their imagination and creative development. LA's BEST Afterschool Enrichment Program has developed new methods to engage elementary school-aged children in activities that leverage their passions to address real-life challenges. Come learn strategies for helping all kids imagine their ideal community while practicing critical thinking, communication, and other critical 21st Century skills.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Develop Emotional Intelligence with The +|- Code
Eloi Delmonico, Director, Source Code Technology, Essex Junction, VT

The +|- Code is a school and after-school program to help students develop their Emotional Intelligence. It helps children and teenagers improve their discernment and better understand their emotions and environment. A unique tool to decode fake news, facial expressions, solve conflicts and make better choices. It is also a fun interactive and instructional game to enjoy with friends, educators, and parents!
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Older Youth

Developing “Embodied” SEL: How to Easily Integrate Service Learning into Your OST Program
Troy Hickerson, Co-founder, UNICEF Kid Power, New York, NY

By helping others, we actually help ourselves, too! When we empower kids to believe that they can make a difference in the world, and then we give them the opportunity to actually practice helping others, they unlock powerful mental health outcomes for themselves. We call this type of service learning “embodied SEL,” and although integrating a service-learning program may sound intimidating, it can be very simple (and free) to implement.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Get Ready, Get Set...Code!!!
Steven L. Willis, STEAM Program Manager; Devin Swift-Bailey, Maker Lab Assistant, Chicago Youth Centers, Chicago, IL

There is an opportunity during out-of-school time (OST) to develop intentional and innovative programs that can help supplement or enrich youths’ academic skills. Get Ready, Get Set … Code presents to OST educators one of the many fun ways that a coding club can be implemented in a way that reinforces science and math knowledge.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Greening STEM Grants: Supporting OST Environmental Education Projects
Robert Sendrey, Program Director, Environmental Education, National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF), Washington, DC; Linda Rosenblum, Education Program Manager, National Park Service, Washington, DC; Heather Taylor, Education Technician, Saguaro National Park, Tucson, AZ

An overview of the US Department of Education funded Greening STEM OST Grant program. Partnerships between 21st Century Community Learning Centers and National Park Service field sites will be highlighted in a case study. An introduction to the Greening STEM program model will be presented. Grant eligibility criteria and timeline will be shared. Appointments for free follow-up consultations and requests for grant partner matchmaking will be taken.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Sustainability

Imagining a Liberated Future
Aleiya Evison, Equity Designer, Equity Meets Design, Denver, CO

In this workshop, we will utilize equity design tools to identify a practice of liberation that you can carry forward to your work post-conference. Grounded in an in-depth mindfulness exercise, followed by a collaborative design sprint, this workshop will create space for folks to play, vision, and commit to cultivating liberatory practice in themselves and their work.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Innovative Practices: A Conversation with Superintendents & Principals
Moderator: TBD
Panelists: TBD

The pandemic of COVID-19 has shifted how we think and operate as we serve our students and lead our staff. Learn about innovative practices that truly bridge our extended learning programs and our educational institutions to meet the needs of our students, families, and communities. 
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Rebuilding Community through Play
Phil Brown, Lead Trainer, High 5 Adventure Learning Center, Brattleboro, VT

Creating bonds between students, leaders, staff, and administrators promotes a sense of belonging and connection that creates more engaged participants. These positive experiences combine to produce a communal culture. The games, activities, and discussion prompts in this workshop can help rebuild program climate by promoting interactions that address the essential building blocks of successful communities.
E, M, H, HE, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Resilience is Everything
Dee Hankins, Inspirational Speaker, Dee Hankins, Rancho Cucamonga, CA

Dee Hankins tells a powerful story about resilience and just how important it is to never give up on yourself. He recalls his story of growing up in foster care and gives you an inside view on what your students may be going through and how you can help them bounce back from life's challenges. Come be inspired.
Strand: Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

You Gotta Laugh! Using Laughter and Humor to Strengthen Your OST Program
Clint Darr, Afterschool Regional Educator, Missouri Afterschool Network, Fulton, MO

Laughter: the best medicine for our kids AND us! Embrace the power of laughter and how it can improve your out-of-school time program and energize you, your staff, and your students! Learn the social-emotional benefits of laughter and practice laughter yoga techniques with a certified laughter yoga instructor. When not ROTFL, learn techniques, tips, and strategies for using humor and laughter in your out-of-school time program as well as in your personal life.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality


Body Language and Leadership: Our Bodies Speak Volumes
Dr. Donna Van Natten, President/CEO, Body Language Dr., Chicago. IL

Let’s dive “head, shoulders, knees, and toes” to better understand and communicate our thoughts and feelings. Communication is vital for every aspect of our work, including professional and personal lives. How we communicate relies on the unspoken signs our bodies generate, and we benefit by understanding ourselves … and how we interact with others. Clues, gestures, and limbic brain functions control much of how we engage with others and how we present ourselves to colleagues and clients.

Strand: Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Demystify STEM with Wonder Kits
Amanda Esaena, Manager of Training and Educational Resources, Wonder Kits, Dallas, TX

Inspired by curiosity, Wonder Kits provide everything you need for a quality, hands-on STEM activity that anyone can facilitate. Partnering with organizations such as T-Mobile and Texas Instruments, Wonder Kits add career exploration at any grade level. From designing your own wind-powered car to learning how to protect your brain, Wonder Kits bring creativity and fun to national standards. Learn the best tips and tricks in this engaging workshop to demystify STEM.
E, M, H, MLA, DS
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Experiential Learning for Staff and Youth: Engaging the Brain by Doing
Caitlin Small, Executive Director; Aaron Nicholson, Chief Development Officer, Project Adventure, Beverly, MA

Experiential learning, or EL, engages the brain and body through play, team-building, and problem-solving. While so much of how we teach and learn tend to be didactic (words-based), the joy of OST is the ability to spend time in play, experimentation, and exploration. Join us to learn how EL can be a powerful tool for SEL and academic learning, with your youth AND with your staff - and walk away with a set of activities to try tomorrow!
PK, E, M, H, HE, MLA, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Older Youth

Families as Partners: Engaging Families in Student Learning through Mobile Technology
Dr. Qianyi Gao, Research Program Manager, Dr. Jenell Holstead, Associate Professor of Psychology; Robert Lynch, Graduate Assistant; Taylor Mair, Graduate Assistant, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Green Bay, WI

Engaging families in student learning at home has been found to benefit the student's academic achievement and performance at school. This workshop will discuss the role of technology in connecting home and school and introduce evidence-based strategies for supporting and enhancing family engagement using mobile technologies. Participants will have the opportunity to get hands-on experience and practice some of the strategies that they can incorporate into their own afterschool programs.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

From Pandemic Pivot to Practice: Amplifying Youth Voice in a Time of Chaos
Reyna Hamilton, Manager, Community Engagement and Outreach, Lawrence Hall of Science, UC Berkeley, Vallejo, CA; Yvonne Nolasco, Afterschool Program Area Manager; Janet Barnes, ASP Coordinator, Park Middle School, Bay Area Community Resources, Fairfield, CA

The pandemic pushed us all to shift our approaches to youth programming. This challenge also presented a unique opportunity to prototype programs that were more responsive to youth needs and interests. Learn about two youth-led projects of Bay Area Community Resources and the Lawrence Hall of Science in which youth drove their learning, collaborated with UC Berkeley researchers, and created COVID-related media for their communities.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Older Youth

Fuel Your People Power: How to Evaluate Your Workplace Culture and Elevate Your Impact
Kelsey Neff, Consultant and Trainer, By Design Consulting, Sacramento, CA

Your organization thrives when people thrive, how do you make that happen? Fuel Your People Power gives you a process to create a more harmonious workplace for you and your employees. Build your capacity with techniques for getting genuine employee feedback, strategies for connecting data with impact and learn how to use both to build the team of your dreams. This workshop will leave you with the practical skills needed to elevate your workplace culture AND the motivation to actually do it.
Strand: Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships; Sustainability

Fun and Games for a Sustainable World
Erin Snyder, Senior Resource Educator, Riverside-Corona Resource Conservation District, Riverside, CA

Discover fun, interdisciplinary, hands-on activities that foster environmental awareness while building skills in STEM, literacy, and geography. Participate in games, role-playing, and problem-solving challenges that help students explore their connection to other people, all living things, and the environment. Hands-on activities address natural resource use, population trends, wildlife habit, fresh water, and our changing climate.
E, M, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development, and Quality

Hands in the Garden: Teaching STEM and Literacy through Gardening
Deborah Ivie, Assistant Professor, Utah State University, Riverton, UT

Let's get our hands dirty! If you are looking for new ways to teach STEM and Literacy skills, look no further than the dirt around you. This workshop will provide hands-on experiences integrating gardening with both STEM and literacy skills. The focus will be on programming for elementary-age students. Learn to teach computational thinking using seeds, or improve literacy skills through the creation of a pollinator garden. Join us for hands-on gardening fun that ties with the core curriculum.
E, M, DS
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Merely Players: How Play and Storytelling Help Young People Learn and Connect
Liviera Lim, Training Specialist; Rachael Pierce Jones, Curriculum Strategist; Andrea Ohlsen-Esparza, Middle and High School Programs Specialist, Young Storytellers, Los Angeles, CA

Play is the heart of learning and connection for young people. It helps students engage in the learning process, explore their identity, and develop authentic relationships. Like play, storytelling is essential to our nature as humans. In this workshop, participants will explore play and storytelling. They will also learn and practice games and writing prompts to develop community in the classroom, inspire students to explore their identity, and build excitement around writing.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

One-on-One Tutoring: Discovering the Possibilities!
Cindy Sackett, Executive Director, Invest in Youth, Seattle, WA

Education is a gateway to opportunity. One proven way to cultivate academic potential and help create a world where every student in every community is able to pursue their dreams is through one-on-one tutoring. Learn how to build the foundations of critical thinking, resilience, and belonging in young people in your community. During this session, the framework of a successful one-on-one tutoring program will be shared and you will walk away excited and motivated to get to work on yours!
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Promising Practices in Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging
Moderator: TBD
Panelists: TBD

Dive into courageous conversations around promising practices in diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in our educational ecosystem. Expanded Learning Programs play a vital role in our students' lives and the communities they serve. How are we as an educational ecosystem being fully inclusive, working collaboratively with all stakeholders, and providing equitable resources?
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality; Partnerships & Building Relationships 

Proven Strategies to Calm the Chaos on the Playground
Carrie Flint, Education Consultant, Musical PE Plus, Redondo Beach, CA

For some kids, playing on a playground is a stressful and negative experience. In this presentation, I share research-based strategies to create a playground free of conflicts and bullying. Participants will walk away with easy-to-implement solutions to address the 5 most common problems that occur on the playground.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership

Today's Foster Youth: How to Create a Comprehensive Foster Youth Support Program on Your Campus
Jenna Mendez, TK-12 District Foster Youth Counselor, Corona-Norco Unified School District, Norco, CA

Foster youth are often the “invisible” underserved population. Participants will learn how to create a comprehensive academic and social/emotional program serving the needs of today’s foster youth. The presentation will include academic supports, on-campus programs, mentorships, district and community outreach, career readiness, resources, and how to build meaningful relationships for this at-risk population. Financial options and how to continue growing the program will be discussed.

Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

Friday, April 29 


Creating Kindhearted Kids
Kristin Vaassen, Director of Business and Curriculum Development; Nan Welch, Education Director, Two by Two Character Development, Dubuque, IA

Join us for a high-energy, hands-on session that will launch inspirational ideas on how to weave quality, character education into your after school environment. Learn how to incorporate core values like KINDNESS, RESPECT, RESPONSIBILITY, and EMPATHY through community meetings, literature, and pro-social language. Plus, discover how heartfelt songs, cheers, and poems can transform your climate and culture into a positive place to learn, share, and grow together.
Strand: Exhibitor Showcase; Program Design, Development & Quality

Creative Writing for Wellness
Keren Taylor, Executive Director and Founder; Kirsten Giles, Curriculum Director, WriteGirl, Los Angeles, CA

Through dozens of hands-on activities and examples, gain an entire slate of creative writing activities that spark creativity and cultivate wellness. With over 30-years of experience in developing and leading workshops for teens and young adults, Keren and Kirsten will guide you through multi-sensory activities to explore personal stories and enhance wellbeing for yourselves and the youth you work with.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Curving Mindset to Create and Embrace Change
Alberto Gonzalez, Director of Program & Operations, Think Together, Palm Springs, CA

This workshop will discuss the Change Curve and how to managers process, self-reflect, and respond to change in an Expanded Learning field that is in a constant state of change. Managers will practice coaching conversations to better provide Technical Assistance to their teams in response to change.
Strand: Think Together

Expanded Learning Opportunity Program Funds
Moderator: TBD
Panelists: TBD

Expanded Learning Program opportunities are expanding through federal funding allocations. Through the lens of our leadership in rural, suburban, and city areas, learn from how our diverse panel is utilizing and expanding the quality of their programs.
Strand: Panel Sessions; Program Design, Development & Quality

Exploring Engineering with The Tech Challenge
Amy Bucher, Content Development Manager, The Tech Interactive, San Jose, CA

Join us to learn strategies for building problem-solving capacity and self-confidence in youth using design challenges. After gaining experience with the innovation design process (brainstorming, prototyping, and sharing solutions) and tools that support it (journaling, collaboration), you will walk away with activities you can lead with students right away.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality

Lead with Purpose, Towards Purpose, On Purpose!
Juan Alvarado, Jr., CEO, Raize The Bar LLC, Visalia, CA

Managers struggle with unclear expectations, job stress, and frustration, causing their disengagement and the team. However, a Gallup Poll shows that an engaged manager increases the likelihood of a team to be engaged by 59%. So, we must ENGAGE our managers. This workshop will uncover How intentional well-being and purposeful engagement will transform your leadership becoming strengths-focused. It is about building a strength-based environment. It is time to pour into our leaders with Purpose!
Strand: Staff Leadership

Promoting Safety, Inclusion, and Well-Being for LGBTQ+ Youth
Dr. Vincent “Vinnie” Pompei, Director, Youth Well-Being Program, Human Rights Campaign Foundation, San Diego, CA

Current data reveal serious challenges faced by LGBTQ+ youth, including high rates of rejection, bullying, and a lack of affirming support from educators. This session will cover current data, build cultural humility, and review best practices. If you desire to become an emerging expert and a stronger advocate for LGBTQ+ inclusion, this session is for you.
Strand: Program Design, Development & Quality; Staff Leadership; Partnerships & Building Relationships

For additional workshop and learning opportunity logistics, please visit the following pages: 

BOOST Film Festival | BOOST Live Podcast Lounge | BOOST Nation: Town Hall Meetings

Camp Inspire Workshops | Exhibitor Showcase Workshops | Get on the Bus Workshops

Inspiration Station Workshops | Master Classes | Panel Sessions

Pre-Conference Academies | Workshop Strand Sponsors



Please note: Name badges are required to attend all BOOST Conference events including all meals and all workshops

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