Studies have shown the best after school programs have planned learning activities and structures of learning (Harvard Family Research Project (2008): After School Programs in the 21st Century ). This requires the Education Manager and Mentors prioritize and discuss learning plans for individual youth or small group projects and/or workshops for the larger youth group. Mentor’s can also work with another mentor to design and co-facilitate a workshop. You may get ideas from your EM’s calendar amalgamating possible themes for each month. There is also an abundance of programming ideas on the program planning portal on the RTG website.
Introduction: How To Access And Use The Program Plan Area Of The Portal
RTG has structured the program around specific “essential” components and study areas. But, in order to simplify the process for mentors only 2 streams will be available for you – Academic Success and Life After School on the program plan portal on the RTG mentor site. Plans will be available from 35 clubs across Canada!
There are also filters for 1-1 activities and group activities.
If you want to make a new program plan please discuss with your EM who will provide the template for design and post for you on the portal.
You will also be able to peruse monthly calendars from 35 clubs by going on All Clubs icon on RTG site and viewing a calendar icon beside the club name. Please click on the icon and a calendar will appear.
Icebreakers can play an important role in helping young people integrate and connect with one another in a group environment. Icebreakers can also enhance your teaching by helping to stimulate cooperation and participation. They can provide positive momentum for small group study and discussion by:
Helping a new group get to know one another.
Helping new members to integrate into a group.
Helping young people feel comfortable together.
Encouraging listening to others.
Encouraging working together.
Encouraging young people to break out of their cliques.
Developing social skills.
Building a rapport with leaders.
Creating a good atmosphere for learning and participation.
Icebreakers and you
A 10 SECOND CHECK LIST!
Be enthusiastic, whatever happens, be enthusiastic!
Choose volunteers carefully and don’t cause embarrassment.
If something is not working move quickly on to the next activity.
Timing is important. Don’t flog them to death. Use icebreakers as an introduction to your programme. Finish each icebreaker while young people are still enjoying it.
Choose icebreakers appropriate for your age group. No group is the same and your understanding of what will and will not work with your group is a core youth work skill.