Archive for October, 2011

FREE Save The Songbirds curriculum kit.

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Did you know that songbird populations are in decline, some  by as much as 80% in the last 40 years?
 Scotts and the National Wildlife Federation are dedicated to reversing  this trend through the Save the Songbirds program designed to create 50,000  acres of new songbird habitats nationwide.

Sign up today  to receive  a FREE Save The Songbirds curriculum kit. The kits are versioned for grades 1-2 and 3-4 and will arrive in late January. .
Materials will educate students about the plight of songbirds and inspire your  afterschool program  to create a songbird habitat.


Art Contest for Youth/ Wonders of Weather

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

IGES Art Contest

Entry deadline November 7, 2011

This year, the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies invites students in grades 2-4 to explore the topic of weather and submit a drawing showing what they learned.
Prizes include framed color certificates and Visa gift cards

Entries must be received by November 7, 2011.
Winners Announced November 21st.  

2011 Art Contest for Grades 2-4

When you go outside, what makes you wonder? Is it the colors and shapes of clouds? The burst of thunder during a rainy afternoon? Or the powerful winds of a storm? Is it the stillness of a crisp, foggy morning?  The heat of a summer day? Or a thick white blanket made of slowly falling snowflakes?

These are examples of weather.
Weather, the state of the atmosphere at a particular time and place, is constantly changing.
Depending on where you live, as slight changes like wind speed, humidity or air pressure take place, you may wake up with rain, fog, snow or bright sunlight on your window! Whether you take an umbrella to school, put on sunblock to play basketball or wear a turtleneck before going to the movies, it all depends on the weather that day.  So look around and ask yourself, what makes you wonder about weather?

This year’s contest invites young scientists and artists to explore weather.
See what it feels like outside, watch the weather report and spy out of the window.
Read stories and books.
Search websites. Watch movies. Then draw a picture showing what you learned. And don’t forget to enter your artwork in the 2011 IGES art contest!




Fundraising for Your Schoolyard Habitat

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Webinar: Fundraising for Your Schoolyard Habitat

Don’t let a lack of funds hold you back from starting your Schoolyard Habitat project!
Attend NWF’s  free webinar to learn about potential sources of grants and in-kind support for Schoolyard Habitats, creative approaches to fundraising, and how to engage your school and your community in raising funds and gathering support for your project.

Date: Tuesday, October 25th

Time: 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Eastern time

How: Both online and on the phone. The website URL and call-in phone number will be sent to registrants via a confirmation email.


  • Welcome
  • Instructions for using Blackboard Collaborate
  • How to Look for and Apply for Grant Funding
  • In-Kind Support
  • Creative Approaches to Fundraising
  • Engaging Your School and Your Community
  • Resources
  • Wrap Up

A recording of the webinar will be made available on the National Wildlife Federation website at for those who are unable to attend the live session.

If you have questions, please contact

Thank you for your interest in Schoolyard Habitats!

Date:Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Time: 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

If you’d like to attend this event you can RSVP online.



Check out Preparedness 101: Zombie Pandemic,

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Looking for a fun new way to teach emergency preparedness?

Check out Preparedness 101: Zombie Pandemic

The  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) DC’s graphic novel which introduces the importance of preparedness in a    creative new format. Follow Todd, Julie, and Max as they navigate through a world over taken by the undead.
A surprising twist at the end will have you thinking about what you can do to be   prepared for all emergencies.
Once you’re done reading use the attached preparedness checklist to get your family, workplace, or school prepared before disaster strikes!

You can find the novella and preparedness checklist at CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE!

Free Webinar: Expanding What In Education: Time? Opportunity? Community?

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

Expanding What In Education: Time? Opportunity? Community?

When : Wednesday, November 2, 2011 from 2 :30pm- 4pm Eastern, 1:30pm – 3pm Central, 12:30pm – 2pm Mountain, 11:30am – 1pm Pacific

Expanding the learning day is gaining national momentum as an important strategy for supporting student learning, particularly in high-poverty communities. This Action Dialogue will be conducted by leading experts in the field, who have contributed to the newest issue of New Directions for Youth Development, “Expanded Learning Time and Opportunities,” edited by Helen Janc Malone.
The webinar will address the following questions:

• Can and should after-school be redesigned to play a larger role in strengthening school reform initiatives?

• Can child and youth-serving intermediary organizations facilitate lasting school- community partnerships that realize an expanded learning vision?

• Can school leaders get on board and help lead the way in building community partnerships that support the whole child?

• How are community schools similar and different from expanded learning schools?


Martin Blank is President at the Institute for Educational Leadership and Director of the Coalition for Community Schools.

Helen Janc Malone is the issue editor New Directions for Youth Development (#131), “Expanded Learning Time and Opportunities,” and is affiliated with Harvard University.

Robert Stonehill is a Managing Director at American Institutes for Research. He has held significant positions at the U.S. Department of Education related to 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

Saskia Traill is Vice President of Policy and Research at The After-School Corporation in New York City.

Gil G. Noam (moderator) is the Founder and Director of the Program in Education, Afterschool & Resiliency (PEAR) and Associate Professor at Harvard University and McLean Hospital.

We hope you can join our discussion of this important topic with leaders in the field, who are conducting the latest research and creating promising new practices. We encourage our audience to take part in the dialogue by submitting questions and comments online during the webinar.

Registration is free but necessary, so register today by clicking here.
Our webinars fill up quickly, so please register right away.
Also, please be sure to attend the webinar if you register.
Though the webinar is free, if you sign up but do not attend the webinar, and fail to cancel your reservation within 24 hours, we must charge a $10 service fee to cover the costs associated


Panel presentations with PowerPoint will be audible and visible over the Internet.
Panel discussion will be audible. Audience participation is conducted via chat. To see an example of the format, go to

Miss a webinar? All of our webinars are available to view on demand, free of charge at, just click on the “archive” tab.

Contact Erin Cooney at with any questions.

Action Dialogue Webinar Series – This webinar is part of an ongoing joint webinar series co-sponsored by the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Youth Development and PEAR – the Program in Education, Afterschool, and Resiliency at McLean Hospital and Harvard Medical School. The webinars are designed as action dialogues with researchers and practitioners on current topics important to learning and development of young people. The webinars are partially supported by Jossey-Bass, an imprint of Wiley.

For information on purchasing the journal New Directions for Youth Development, please visit