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Youth Worker Methods

A critical part of program improvement is training program managers and staff for high performance.  The Youth Worker Method courses provide front line workers with the skill building techniques for delivering a framework of outcome-based youth program interventions.  The Youth Development Commission staff have been trained and certified by the Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality to deliver the method courses.  Participants will be introduced to the Pyramid of Program Quality through an examination of strategies for youth engagement and techniques for creating a supportive and safe environment.  The approach is a set of active and participatory learning methods that are central to The Weikart Center’s philosophy, which support youth success, involve youth in creating their own success and builds the skills of youth to achieve success.

These interactive courses will provide a blueprint for building a community of stronger relationships with youth through effective questioning, active listening, providing youth with choice and opportunities to reflect on program activities, steps for creating challenging learning experiences and much more.

Youth Worker Method Descriptions:

  • Voice & ChoiceProviding young people with authentic, meaningful choices is a hallmark of truly engaging environments.  This workshop is focused on providing meaningful choice within activities and voice within the youth program itself.
  • Planning and ReflectionThe planning and reflection process, central to the High/Scope approach for every age, can turn a fun activity into a powerful learning experience! Participants learn how to support youth in planning, implementing and evaluating activities and projects.
  • Building CommunityThis lively workshop introduces participants to numerous community-building and relationship-building activities.
  • Cooperative LearningThis workshop addresses youth’s interaction in groups—both the cooperative learning environment and leadership opportunities.
  • Active LearningIntroduces the remarkable benefits of providing opportunities for youth to actively explore materials and ideas. The workshop introduces the “ingredients” of active learning as well as methods for creating high-impact and active environments.
  • Ask-Listen-EncourageIntroduces a method for building supportive, youth-centered relationships.  The workshop prepares participants to ask lots of effective questions, to listen actively to youth and to encourage youth by tapping their intrinsic motivation.
  • Reframing Conflict Helps participants consider an approach in which adults support youth in solving their conflicts and problems.
  • Structure and Clear Limits –How do you prevent chaos in a youth environment without stifling youth’s positive energy?  This workshop introduces methods for setting clear limits and a productive program structure.
  • Homework Help– This interactive workshop introduces participants to the relationship ABC’s (Ask and Listen, Be involved, and Connect) as well as the concept of “focus”.  These elements help participants reconsider Homework Help as another opportunity to build relationships and nurture positive growth, beyond getting the work done.

The Youth Worker Method courses can be delivered as a full series or as a customized method delivery based on program and staff professional development needs.

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