Cambridge After School Program

Official Dosomething.org Project

The Problem

Mission The Cambridge After School Program strives for social justice in the Cambridge community. CASP focuses on providing affordable and accessible after school programming for low-income Cambridge youth. Through this mission, we hope to combat socio economic disparity and empower Cambridge youth, allowing them to realize their full potential. CASP will keep as its priority the needs of parents and the community through consistent communication with parents, youth, and community leaders.

Plan of Action

The first hour will be dedicated to homework support. The children will be broken up into three groups, one for ages six and seven, one for ages eight to ten and one group, and one group ages eleven and up. The ratio of teachers to students should be no more than one teacher for every student and no less than one teacher for every three students. The second hour will be dedicated to academic and self enrichment. The academic enrichment shall focus on community demands as identified by the community and parent board. For the first year, the preliminary plan is to have Tuesday afternoons focus on an art-based enrichment (both performing and fine arts), Wednesdays will focus on science or math enrichment activities while for the older kids, we will focus on MCAS and study skills preparation. Thursdays will have a physical activity focus (outside if weather permits and inside in the colder months). One possibility for the second hour would be to recruit on campus groups (especially dance groups) to come teach workshops for several weeks on site. There will also be Saturday field trips which will occur once a month. These field trips will be to various places, from Harvard football games to museums to Walden Pond. The Saturday field trips are meant to add to the enrichment and to provide a time to have fun and explore.

Project Updates

The Cambridge After School Program this past semester launched a new literacy curriculum. The initiative was started by parents of our youth. Especially with such a diverse community, literacy skills are not on par with grade level, making every part of learning more difficult. The literacy program focues on four skill areas: phonics, vocabulary, comprehension, and fluency. Even in the few months the program has been running, we have seen drastic improvement in some of our most challenged readers.

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