On January 17, 2019, Eden Hall Foundation was pleased to bring 15 organizations from Allegheny, Washington, and Westmoreland counties together to learn and discuss priorities for Summer Programs, including preventing the summer slide and summer hunger. Collectively, these organizations serve thousands of children every summer. 

Eden Hall Foundation recognizes the importance and the power of summer programs. We believe that all children need and should have access to high-quality summer learning opportunities. Summer programs play a unique role in supporting proper growth and development and ensuring children stay sharp and maintain their academic skills. We partner with groups that we know are providing high-quality programming to ensure academic growth, social-emotional learning, and health. 

Speakers presented valuable resources to assist organizations to enhance and their programs during the summer months, but many of these resources can be useful year round. Below are resources available to organizations and the presentations from the workshop. 

Education

  • WQED resources presentation
  • Multimedia activities based on a theme and targeted math skills. Ages 4-5 and 6-8. 
  • The Electric Company's Summer Learning Program is a six-week multimedia experience consisting of 24 sessions, with four 90-minute sessions per week. Each session uses the show as a leaping-off point for developing children's vocabulary and exploring core math concepts 
  • With PBS KIDS ScratchJr, kids can create their own interactive stories and games featuring their favorite PBS KIDS characters. The storytelling possibilities are endless with this creative coding app for children ages 5-8. 
  • “Hamilton’s America” provides a behind-the-scenes look at Lin-Manuel Miranda’s smash hit Broadway musical Hamilton. This collection includes clips, classroom activities, discussion questions, handouts, and teaching tips connected to the film. 
  • PBS Learn  includes resources, lessons plans and more are available to help your children learn with some of PBS’s favorite friends! Click on the scrolling banner for resources related to each show. 
  • Studyladder is a site that provides educational resources across a wide range of subjects. 
  • While designed with families in mind, Start with a Book also works wherever there are kids and caring adults. Organizations working with kids in kindergarten through third grade can use these free resources to ward off the learning loss.
  • Discover the Smithsonian Learning Lab, a free resource with resources, tools, and lesson plans to help youth understand history, art, culture, the sciences, and more.
  • ABC Mouse offers free access to public libraries and provides a full online curriculum for children 2-8 years old.
  • Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and personalized learning opportunities. You can search math activities by grade level (which is super helpful) and there are free tools for teachers and parents. 
  • Common Sense Media is a great resource that can help you identify book lists, apps, websites, and other learning tools that can enhance your students’ learning. The website is super-easy to navigate, and their ratings and reviews are super helpful. 
  • A Mighty Girl is the world’s largest collection of books, toys, and movies for smart, confident, and courageous girls; their weekly e-newsletter is great. 

Staff Development 

  • Check out APOST’s website for upcoming trainings, resources, Quality Campaign information, and more! You can also sign up for “News You Can Use,” a weekly e-newsletter from APOST.
  • APOST handouts from the workshop.  
  • If you haven’t done so already, consider adding your program to APOST’s Program Finder. 
  • APOST offers a host of trainings for their Quality Campaign Partners – explore descriptions of all those trainings.
  • Save These Dates and stay tuned for more details – and always check the APOST calendar for more outstanding events and opportunities: 
    • Summer Program Staff Hiring Fair – Friday, March 21st  
    • APOST’s Summer Conference – Friday, June 14th   

Summer Food Programs

    • Summer Food Service Program Presentation - This presentation provides an overview of the Summer Food Service Program. More information can be found on the Department of Education’s website.
    • The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank is actively engaged in confronting issues of chronic hunger, poor nutrition and health. This summer, they will become one of the region’s largest Summer Food Service Program sponsors. Lauren Babich is the Child Nutrition Outreach Manager at the Food Bank and oversees the program.  If your agency is interested in serving meals to children in the summer, connect with Lauren (lbabich@pittsburghfoodbank.org or 412-460-3663 ext. 507) and she can discuss different options with you, including becoming a Summer Food Sponsor or a Summer Food Site.   
    • The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) is a great resource on children’s food programs and advocacy nationwide. 

Healthy Activities

Service Learning & Character Building 

Applying for a Summer Program Grant: