Please help the North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs welcome our new Director, Elizabeth Anderson!

Elizabeth is bringing more than 15 years of experience in nonprofit leadership and management of afterschool programs to NC CAP. She is deeply committed to building collaborative, cross-sector partnerships in order to address the many complex issues impacting children, teens, and their families. She is particularly passionate about making sure that children and teens have access to safe, high-quality out-of-school enrichment opportunities that allow them to develop their individual interests and identities while supporting their academic, social, and emotional success.

Elizabeth is a North Carolina native hailing from Winston-Salem, NC and she is a proud product of the North Carolina public school system. After earning her bachelor's degree from UNC Chapel Hill, she spent almost ten years in New Mexico facilitating and administering school-day, afterschool, and summer programs for children and youth. In 2016, Elizabeth returned home to North Carolina where she earned her master’s degrees in Social Work and Public Administration with a focus on Community, Management, and Nonprofit Leadership. She was Program Director for Chatham County Partnership for Children from 2020-2022 where she led Child Care Resource and Referral programming for a five-county region and served as a convener and thought leader on early childhood issues in Chatham County.

These experiences showed her the transformative power of afterschool, summer, and other out-of-school time programs and informal learning, starting her lifelong journey advocating and supporting afterschool opportunities. As Director of NC CAP, Elizabeth will provide strategic leadership to develop, drive, and ensure the sustainability of NC CAP priorities, initiatives, and statewide afterschool policy. 

We are so happy to bring Elizabeth onto the NC CAP team she encourages everyone in our network to reach out and open communication between your programs and herself!
Are you a program looking for an engaging math curriculum and resources you can implement in your afterschool program immediately? In this workshop series, participants will be introduced to After-School Math Plus, an evidence-based curriculum to support students in developing a positive math identity by exploring mathematics in everyday experiences. The highly engaging, hands-on curriculum also builds students’ awareness of the importance of math skills for future educational choices and career options. The program engages students in grades 3-8 who are attending out-of-school-time programs.

December 13th 9:30-10:45 PST / 12:30-1:45 EST Register Here Meeting ID: 931 5017 3110
Registration is now open for Duke Ignite’s Middle School Spring program: Tinkering Experience at the Museum of Life and Science. Ignite is a free, 8-week-long hybrid program for Durham/Wake area middle school students to learn about engineering and the human-centered design process to design prototypes to address local community issues surrounding the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals of Clean Energy, Clean Water, or Good Health. Our program kicks off January 29th, 2023. Ignite is formally recognized as a part of the UN Partnership Platform and is joint program between Duke University and the Museum of Life and Science in Durham, NC. Students completing the program will receive a $30 gift card at the program’s conclusion. 

To learn more about the program, please visit our website
Modeling Math Practices:
Are you looking for fun ways to help youth build number sense and problem-solving skills? Math can take on new meaning when it is integrated into daily routines in our afterschool programs. In this module, afterschool educators will explore and practice strategies for making math engaging and accessible.

Learn more about the upcoming three part series, starting on December 8th at 6:30pm, on the ACRES Website
In the first episode of Journeys in Youth Development, host Georgia Hall, Ph.D., director of NIOST (National Institute on Out-of-School Time), talks to Marisela Montoya, chief program officer at Foundation Communities in Austin, Texas, and Kourtney Andrada, senior director of school-based programs at Girls Inc. of Alameda County in Oakland, California. Marisela reads several excerpts from her essay “Sweet Spot,” about how she happened to wander into an afterschool program and found her calling. Kourtney reads from her essay “Investing in Communities of Color,” about her early experiences working with youth as both a track coach and as an advisor to teens in a migrant farmer community who would be first-generation college students.

It's not too late to join the NAA and the Collaborative for Advancing Health Equity in Out-of-School Time for a virtual training series designed to support OST programs with increasing access to healthy eating and physical activity for youth. Participants will learn how to leverage existing quality standards, such as the Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Standards (HEPA), assessment tools, and data, to capture current activities that support the health and wellbeing of youth. Register Today!
A credit-for-learning program offers students opportunities to explore their interests and participate in activities that also allow them to earn credits toward their graduation requirements. These programs include a wide range of credit-bearing opportunities outside of school, like learning a coding language or participating in an internship. The linked guide is designed to assist individuals who are in any phase of starting their own credit-for-learning program and are working on building and maintaining relationships with partners, including administrators, teachers, districts, and funders. The Afterschool Alliance interviewed credit-for-learning providers to develop a list of best practices, and readers are encouraged to adopt any practices that best fit their context.

Please reference this guide as you tackle credit-for-learning opportunities in your programs.
Prepare for sunshine and soul shine at the NAA Convention in Orlando, Florida, from March 19-22, 2023. NAA23 is the ultimate charging station—powering human connections, inspired learning, and meaningful recognition for OST professionals. Experience the joy and rejuvenation, ‘the light,’ that comes from joining in community with a collective why. Out of school time professionals, this gathering is for you, for us, for ALL OF US, because together we shine!
Supported by the Mott Foundation, Mizzen is available at no cost to afterschool professionals! Download the Mizzen By Mott app to access STEM activities at your finger-touch! You’ll find it in Mizzen here.

Featured Activities & Playlists
  • Mizzen Playlist: STEM Activities for K-5th Grade in Small Groups - This playlist is a great mix of engineering and science activities that are easy and fun for small groups of students.
  • Mizzen Playlist: Science Notebooks for 3rd - 12th Grade - Keeping a notebook can help your students think and act like scientists and engineers. Sample these easy-to-implement strategies and lessons to bring science notebooking into your program.
  • Mizzen Module: S.INQ Up Earth and Space for 6-8th Grade - Earth and Space is an inquiry and exploration-based curriculum that uses hands-on activities focused on the relationships between the earth, the solar system, and human impacts on our global environment.
  • Activity Toolkit: STEM Educators Academy Activity Toolkit from ExpandED Schools — This Activity Toolkit offers hybrid learning engineering design challenges, STEM facilitation skill builder videos, and engineering design activities categorized by content areas. 
  • Activity Toolkit: Engineering is Elementary's NASA Partnership free units - A suite of free NASA-funded STEM resources for students in grades 3-8. All resources are research-based and classroom-tested. They are designed to support students’ understanding of space, while helping them see themselves as capable problem solvers.
Below is a free resource which Jobs for the Future (JFF) and some of their partners in Boston developed that focuses on Community and Belonging. The unit consists of six lessons designed to be delivered in 30-35 minutes each. In lieu of a more traditional lesson plan, each lesson has a student-facing slideshow on which the first slide provides the guiding question, learning targets, and agenda. Lessons can be delivered in the order provided or mixed and matched.
The overall goal of the unit is to establish foundational collaboration skills and a sense of belonging before moving into subsequent activities or lessons.

This is a new unit and JFF welcomes questions or feedback. They also sincerely hope that this valuable resources finds some use as a stand-alone unit or as a precursor for additional SEL learning in your programs.

Find the unit with all six lessons here!
Be a part of the annual Beyond School Hours Conference this February at the Caribe Resort in Orlando, Florida!

Beyond School Hours is a national conference that brings together afterschool and OST colleagues from across the nation for a 3-day professional learning event. Refresh, renew, and have fun connecting with peers and experts. Take home skills, tools, and a renewed passion for improving learning outcomes for young people through workshops, pre-conferences, keynote presentations, discussions, networking opportunities, and exhibits.

[Orlando, Florida] – Thursday, February 9 through Sunday, February 12, 2023
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs is a part of the Million Girls Moonshot, helping out-of-school time programs as they increase the quality of STEM learning opportunities for all young people, especially underserved and underrepresented youth. The following engineering activities can be shared with programs and families for additional STEM learning.

  • Role Models are Critical to Introduce Girls to STEM Careers - Looking for STEM role models & mentors? Create a free VolunteerMatch account and post volunteer opportunities to connect STEM role models and mentors to work with your youth today!
  • Take Flight - Using everyday materials, youth engineer a glider that can fly straight for 15 feet.
  • Keep Your Cool! Design Your Own Cooler Challenge - Youth design a cooler that will keep a bottle of water cool using the engineering design process. They test their prototype and graph their results to determine the effectiveness of the solution.
  • Get it Write! - Youth engineering a writing device (pen) using everyday materials. They think about both the (water soluble) "ink" and the delivery mechanism.

To learn more, click here.
Computer Science Education Week, or CSEd Week, is celebrated from December 6 to 12 this year. Often called the largest learning event in history, Computer Science Education Week aims to get K-12 students interested in computer coding. During the second week in December, students are encouraged to take part in an “Hour of Code.” During this event, students are given the opportunity to code for an hour. Computer science is an important subject because it teaches problem-solving and analytical skills, and is an essential skill in the modern job market, with many scholarships out there dedicated to this area of study. This week long celebration hopes to improve computer literacy among all.

Find some resources for celebrating computer science week through this link and you can even register to participate in an Hour of Code event!
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs (NC CAP) would like to highlight program successes statewide. Tell us about your program and you might be our Program Spotlight in the next edition of the Afterschool Observer or on Social Media. Click the Program Spotlight below to be redirected to the updated survey link to tell us about your program. 
The Allen Foundation, Inc.'s priorities and policies are: (1) to make grants to fund relevant nutritional research; (2) to support programs for the education and training of mothers during pregnancy and after the birth of their children; (3) to assist in the training of persons to work as educators and demonstrators of good nutritional practices; (4) to encourage the dissemination of information regarding healthful nutritional practices and habits; and (5) in limited situations to make grants to help solve immediate emergency hunger and malnutrition problems. Applications are due January 15th, 2023.

Centene is offering general operating grants of up to $500,000 to organizations that fall within one or more of the following areas of focus: Health, Education, Children, and the Arts. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Discover is offering grants of up to $5,000 to nonprofit organizations working in the areas of education and literacy. Funding, donations, and sponsorships are intended to support programs and initiatives that meet the needs of various communities across the country, with a particular focus on communities where Discover employees live and work. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Dogwood Health Trust seeks to dramatically improve the health and well-being of all people and communities of Western North Carolina. They are interested in projects that address one or more of their strategic priorities: Housing, Education, Economic Opportunity, and Health and Wellness and that align with their overarching commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. They also have interests in projects related to improving broadband access to support education and healthcare bridging rural divides, and addressing racial equity issues. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The NC GlaxoSmithKline Traditional Grants provides grants of $25,000 and above to organizations to help meet the educational and health needs of today's society and future generations. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Duke Energy Foundation is committed to making strategic investments to build powerful communities where nature and wildlife thrive, youth can excel, and a talented workforce drives economic prosperity for all. These grants support programs that prevent summer reading loss, while also advancing energy, engineering, and environmental education. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Saxena Family Foundation is a privately funded, 501(c)(3) registered non-profit charitable foundation headquartered in Austin, TX. The Foundation awards grants and supports programs that have a particular focus on STEM education and around empowering women in the United States and in India. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs |