Expanded Learning Programs (ELPs) have played a significant role in transforming education in California. These programs provide students valuable opportunities to engage in educational activities outside of traditional school hours, including before school, after school, and during the summer. Kodely, the first design thinking enrichment program for PreK–8th grade students, is playing a role in transforming expanded learning after-school programs in California.
Here are some ways in which Expanded Learning Programs are transforming education in California:
1. Academic Support: ELPs offer academic support by providing students additional learning time and resources. They offer homework assistance, tutoring, and targeted instruction to help students improve their academic performance. These programs focus on areas such as literacy, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), and social-emotional learning. Kodely offers multiple means of student support, including social-emotional learning, STEM education, and technical skills that go beyond the classroom to real-life experiences.
2. Enrichment Activities: ELPs offer a wide range of enrichment activities that go beyond the regular curriculum. These activities include art, music, sports, drama, coding, robotics, and other hands-on learning experiences. By exposing students to various enrichment opportunities, ELPs help foster creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. At Kodely, students engage in a design thinking enrichment curriculum that transcends what they learn during the school day.
3. Improved Attendance and Engagement: Expanded Learning Programs have been successful in improving student attendance and engagement in school. By offering engaging and relevant activities, these programs help reduce absenteeism and keep students motivated to participate in their education. They create a positive and supportive environment that encourages active learning and involvement.
4. Whole Child Development: ELPs focus on the holistic development of students. They address not only academic needs but also social, emotional, and physical well-being. These programs promote positive youth development by fostering resilience, self-esteem, teamwork, and leadership skills. They provide a safe and nurturing space where students can explore their interests and develop a sense of belonging.
5. Closing the Achievement Gap: ELPs have been instrumental in narrowing the achievement gap among students. They provide additional learning opportunities to students from disadvantaged backgrounds who may not have access to resources outside of school. By offering high-quality and equitable learning experiences, ELPs help level the playing field and improve educational outcomes for all students.
Overall, Expanded Learning Programs in California are transforming education by providing comprehensive support, engaging activities, and extended learning opportunities for students. These programs contribute to academic achievement, student engagement, students’ overall well-being, helping them thrive both inside and outside the classroom.