The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a sense of uncertainty to all of us, especially to our young ones. They’re the ones who were and still are affected the most by these unmerciful times. Among many other issues, they can no longer interact with their peers and educators like they used to.
The systemic racism that runs so rampant throughout the K-12 years shows no sign of slowing down. In fact, it’s been shown that the phenomenon of unfinished learning has managed to exacerbate the historical inequity that our people have always fought so hard against. This heartbreaking fact is difficult, if not impossible, to ignore.
We can be absolutely certain of one thing — it’s most likely that after-school activities have become vital throughout the last two years.
The Village Method has always been responsible for pushing forward-thinking, culturally affirming after-school programs that help enrich the lives of our children and help them discover their ancestors’ true history.
In this article, we’d like to show you some of the reasons why our youth is in need of after-school activities. Read on!
The Benefits of After-School Activities
It’s a well-documented fact that after school programs help young people in a variety of ways.
For example, the Afterschool Alliance has shown that after-school activities help kids become more self-confident, develop great social skills, learn how to build healthy relationships with both their peers and adults and even help reduce the possibility of risky behaviors ever occurring.
By keeping the children out of trouble, engaged, and motivated, we’ll have greater chances of helping them get into their desired colleges. We’ll watch them build successful lives that will enable them to give back to the communities that once nurtured them.
For that to happen, we must be adamant about making after-school activities accessible. It comes as no surprise that 88% of Californian parents support public funding for after-schools. This speaks volumes about the importance of after-school activities and the solid relevance of their long-term benefits.
Improving Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)
Family engagement is crucial. Without it, our youth ends up frustrated, confused, and with a lack of proper academic motivation. Although family engagement in schools is still rare, this gap can easily be bridged with the help of qualitative after-school programs.
Great after-school programs use Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) as a way to promote educational equity and nurture the home-school relationship. Family engagement activities are prioritized and seen as the perfect way to increase the levels of safety, health, and justness within communities.
With the help of Social Emotional Learning, our youth will be encouraged to pursue academic excellence while maintaining a constructive bond with all adults they come into contact with. It’s important to understand that family engagement activities are crucial to one’s mental and emotional wellbeing.
Parental engagement motivates our childrens’ educators to step up and provide them with qualitative, culturally affirming information. Because family engagement in schools is so seldom heard of, we’d like to invite you to read the book Families and Educators Together: Building Great Relationships that Support Young Children.
The COVID-19 pandemic has started an educational ruckus. We were once again faced with the inequities of the educational system. It’s up to us to nurture our youth’s social and emotional wellbeing from now on. After-school family engagement activities are the perfect start.
Prioritizing Culturally Affirming Family Engagement Activities
Think about it. The Critical Race Theory (CRT) is still largely unknown, thanks to our politicians. Their endeavor to silence our people and censor our history has turned out to be a success for centuries. However, the Critical Race Theory is easy to understand, if one only makes time to listen.
Basically, it questions the perpetuation of the racial caste system and how the prevalence of institutionalized racism continues to affect our people, including our youth. Now, think of how great it would be to find an after-school program that focuses on the teachings of the Critical Race Theory.
If we want systemic racism to end in America, we’ll have to seek parental engagement activities that bring us together as families rather than as separate individuals. Both children and parents should become accustomed to the real history of our people and take pride in the richness of our culture.
The curriculum is currently void of our people’s real history. This needs to change. After-school activities that focus on the growth and awareness of our children will one day result in the gradual dismantling of racial inequality.
The Conclusion Is…
After-school activities help our youth become more attuned to the rich history and culture of our ancestors. They are encouraged to form strong bonds with their parents through family engagement activities, form invaluable skills with the help of Social and Emotional Learning, and will one day end up blossoming into healthy and empowered adults who will have plenty to give back to their communities.
The Village Method has always been a trusted ally for both children and their families when it comes to culturally accurate after-school activities. We are adamant about providing our youth with the sustainable tools that will enable them to become the powerful adults of tomorrow.
We invite you to lend us your helping hand. We cannot change the deeply ingrained, racially hostile educational system without your help. You can either donate, spread the word about our organization, or volunteer! The choice is yours and please know that we are deeply thankful for your ongoing support.