Fourth to sixth grade youth from the After School for All Partnership in St. Louis (ASAP) summer program participated in a series of memorable fun and educational field trips in mid-July.
The first week involved 30+ youth from the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Greater Louis (Adams Park Club) and the second week involved 20+ youth from Neighborhood Houses. Each of the youth organizations spent a full day exploring nature and pioneer history at a public attraction near where they live, for a total of four days: The Green Center, Babler Memorial State Park, First Missouri State Capitol, and Castlewood State Park.
The Green Center, Missouri State Parks, and Missouri Parks Association provide the programming and support for this program known as the Show Me Science & Art Summer Experience (SASE) in St. Louis and as the Urban Population Outreach Project (UPOP) state-wide. The SASE field trips provided these ASAP youths a positive experience they may not otherwise have encountered, strengthening their sense of community, culture, and ecological awareness. This program is designed to give the urban leaders of tomorrow a taste of life outside the city’s urban core, enriching them with the beauty and knowledge of Missouri’s natural and historical wonders.
Photo courtesy of The Green Center.
As the school year quickly winds down, ASAP wants to put hundreds of summer classes, camps, and activity programs at the finger tips of area youth development and after school programs.
As most programs know, filling a child's summer months with meaningful experiences can be a frustrating and time‐consuming task. Yet summer experiences matter.
While all children make similar school‐year gains in the early grades, summer learning loss may account for 80% of the achievement gap between advantaged and economically disadvantaged youth (Forum for Youth Investment).
By compiling information about area programs, Blueprint4Summer STL gives area organizations and parents access to St. Louis' summer offerings. The free, easy‐to‐use tool is accessible via computer or smartphone at: http://blueprint4summer.com.
Use the mobile app or website to search based on age, gender, interests, price, and ZIP code. Find day camps, sleep‐away camps, and sports camps; and art, music, and science programs.
Link to the camps' websites to learn locations via Google maps, how to apply, if they offer before and after care, and if scholarships are available.
Create a free account on Blueprint4Summer, bookmark favorite programs, save search results, and be kept informed as new programs are added to the database.
Print a calendar that maps out the summer plans – color‐coded for each child – and shows if there are overlaps or gaps in the schedules.
Blueprint4Summer is not only free and easy for parents to use, but it also gives camps the opportunity to list their programs for free. Small programs (with less than 10 offerings) can even enter their information online at http://goo.gl/forms/w91OqVkEUR.
For more information about Blueprint4Summer, to learn about programs, and to connect with other parents online:
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Blueprint4Summer is made possible by the generous support of a wide variety of financial and business partners including the Clark‐Fox Foundation, Build‐A‐Bear Workshop Foundation, Emerson Charitable Trust & Emerson Employee Contributions, Express Scripts, Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield, Jess Yawitz, John McDonnell, Joyce Wood Charitable Fund, Ron and Pam Rubin, St. Louis Children's Hospital, St. Louis Regional Chamber, The Deaconess Foundation, The Foundation for Barnes‐Jewish Hospital, The McDowell Family Foundation, Ward & Carol Klein, William H. Danforth, and the William T. Kemper Foundation–Commerce Bank, Trustee.
March is Women's History Month. ASAP encourages St. Louis area after school and youth development programs to promote the important role women have played throughout St. Louis' 250 year history.
Use this event to discuss the important contribution females have made in advancing the arts, business, education, entertainment, publishing, sports, and many other fields of endeavor.
February is Black History Month. ASAP encourages St. Louis area after school and youth development programs to promote the important role African Americans have played throughout St. Louis' 250 year history.
There are several events and activities taking place during the month. Programs can do classroom activities or arrange outings to area historical attractions. Here are some local resources:
One of ASAP's after school partners is garnering local and national attention for their school improvement efforts. Horace Mann Elementary School is in the spotlight for making significant changes in the learning experiences of their students.
Mann is being lauded for improving academic achievement, increasing the use of assessment data to individualize instruction, and increasing enrollment. Over the past four years, Mann has implemented a number of strategies to improve instruction for its students grades Pre-k through sixth. ASAP's after school program at Mann is provided by Neighborhood Houses.