The South Dakota Afterschool Network works to better our state and its communities by connecting providers, parents and policymakers with proven tools and resources to increase the quality of and access to out-of-school time programming for K-12 children and youth.

Afterschool is a lifeline that keeps youth safe, helps kids learn and grow, and provides parents the ability to work without worry. While South Dakota is home to more than 300 afterschool programs, the demand for programs exceeds available spaces. In fact, 1 in 3 South Dakota children (34 percent) who are not in an afterschool program would be enrolled if it were available. That’s more than 42,000 children who are missing out on opportunities to participate in programming that supports their development academically, socially and economically.

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Afterschool can provide valuable opportunities for students to explore STEM, and we are here to help your program succeed in STEM Learning! From webinars and trainings to our signature TMC Trailers that bring turnkey STEM activities to your doorstep, our diverse collection of resources meets you and your students where you are and provides the support you need to deliver quality programming to your students at any age. 

The South Dakota Afterschool Network wanted to create a mapping tool to better understand the landscape of afterschool and summer programs available for children and families. From the initial launch of the new mapping tool, we have identified some startling findings.

Training and Professional Development – August


August Fireside Chat with Tamien Dysart

Now is the perfect time to hit the reset button and prepare yourself for the new school year. Join Tamien Dysart, CEO and Co-Founder of Think 3D as he inspires and lays out the tools necessary to protect your mental health and set your focus positively for the year ahead. Tamien is a strong believer in the statement ‘a better you is better for everyone.’ Take this time to invest in yourself and create an environment for you and the children you serve can both thrive.
Learn more about Tamien here.
Register Here

Nebraska Afterschool Conference

Registration for the GetConnected Afterschool Conference 2023 is now open! On Friday September 22, 2023, we’ll be the CHI Health Convention Center in Omaha and have a lot of great things in-store.
In-person registration is $90 and includes:
  •  Access to 36 break-out sessions and two keynote addresses from Silva Raker the CEO of the Luminarium in Omaha, Nebraska; and Dr. Stephanie M. Jones, the Gerald S. Lesser Professor in Child Development and Education and Director of the EASEL Lab at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
  • You will receive Why Play Works: Big Changes Start Small by Jill Vialet.  The book explores intersectionality between play and racial equity, gender equity, science and play theory, and more.
  •  Opportunity to network with representatives of over 25 community organizations with resources to support out-of-school time programming and 500 conference participants.
  •  Personalized business cards to use as you network with community organizations and out-of-school time educators.
  • Access to 18 recorded presentations after the conference.
  •  Breakfast, lunch, and door prizes.
Virtual registration is $45 and includes six streamed sessions throughout the day:
  •  Live streamed keynote from Silva Raker the CEO of the Luminarium in Omaha, Nebraska will kick-off the conference.
  • The afternoon keynote will be from Dr. Stephanie M. Jones, the Gerald S. Lesser Professor in Child Development and Education and Director of the EASEL Lab at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
  •  Virtual participants will choose from up to 16 virtual workshops during the breakout sessions.
  • Access to all 18 of the recorded presentations after the conference.
  •  Technical support available throughout the day of the conference.

Community Response to Child Abuse

October 5-6, 2023 • Sioux Falls Convention Center

Hosted by SD Unified Judicial System, Child’s Voice at Sanford Health, and Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment, the conference is a regionally-recognized, annual event.
Attended by 500+ law enforcement, legal professionals, educators, social workers, medical professionals, and community advocates all focused on the mission to end child maltreatment in South Dakota.
Learn more here.
In addition, the Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment offers specialized training in Mandatory Reporting and Adverse Childhood Experiences.


South Dakota OST Professional Fall Conference

Join SoDakSACA for their Fall Conference. Check their website for information updates and registration details when they become available.
October 12 – 14
The Lodge at Deadwood



Tecbridge Girls STEM Equity Learning Community September – December 2023

Techbridge Girls is excited to announce that applications are being accepted to All out-of-school time (OST) supervisors and administrators for programs that serve Black, Indigenous, and Latina girls and gender-expansive youth are encouraged to apply. Participation in the CoP includes 4-5 sessions and stipends. LEARN MORE AND REGISTER HERE

Techbridge Girls Curriculum Program with Training and Kits

Join us at an upcoming Techbridge Girls Information Session to learn more about our program offering for this Fall! Each of our services equips educators with gender- and culturally-responsive teaching tools and full program kitting materials to support youth persistence in STEM and expose girls to BIPOC peers and role models from STEM fields. Participation includes educator training, all materials and a stipend. 

Information Sessions: August 8th at 3pm ET/ noon PST. LEARN MORE AND REGISTER HERE

Teen Science Cafe Moonshot Fellows

Become a Teen Science Café Fellow! Teen Science Cafes are a free, fun way for teens to engage in lively conversations with STEM experts that explore the advances in science and technology that affect their lives. In these events, teens socialize over teen-friendly food and drink and have a lively conversation with local scientists and engineers about current cutting-edge developments in their fields, all in a relaxed and informal out-of-school setting. Teen Science Cafés are for teens, by teens. Teen Science Cafés are not just for the science geeks; they are for all curious teens. Along the way, teen organizers gain a host of leadership skills. Cafés are typically run about an hour and a half once per month during the school year. A $2,500 stipend is provided to selected participants to support the implementation of Teen Science Cafes. APPLY TO BE A TEEN SCIENCE CAFE MOONSHOT FELLOW HERE



ACRES Coaching: Elevating Youth Voice and Choice: Mondays: 08/07/2023, 08/21/2023, 09/11/2023 3:00 – 5:00 pm EST/12:00 – 2:00 pm PST

How often do youth in your program get to choose what they’re investigating or designing, the materials they might use, and/or how they engage with the work? In this module, participants try out strategies for elevating youth voice and choice and apply the ideas as they redesign a STEM activity to incorporate a greater variety of youth input. *The expectation is that you will be live at all three sessions and an active member of this coaching cohort.  Recordings are not available if you are unable to attend.  Completion of the Asking Purposeful Questions module is a prerequisite for this module. REGISTER HERE Code: AC251VC


Facilitating Science Practices Wednesdays: 08/30/2023, 09/13/2023, 09/27/2023 10:30 am – 12:30 pm EST/ 7:30 – 9:30 am PST

How can we make sure that our ‘hands-on’ science experiences for youth are also ‘minds on?’ In this module, participants learn how to support youth as they engage in science practices to learn science ideas, including planning and conducting investigations around testable questions. They’ll talk about the similarities and differences between questioning in science versus questioning in engineering contexts.

*The expectation is that you will be live at all three sessions and an active member of this coaching cohort.  Recordings are not available if you are unable to attend.  Completion of the Asking Purposeful Questions module is a prerequisite for this module. REGISTER HERE Code: AC251VC


Nurturing STEM Identity and Making Career Connections Wednesdays: 09/20/2023, 10/04/2023, 10/18/2023 11:00 am – 1:00 pm EST/ 8:00 – 10:00 am PST

How do you help youth recognize their role in STEM? How do you help youth learn about STEM careers? Participants experience several easy-to-implement strategies, including a photo-elicitation activity that can help youth form STEM identities, and then learn how to conduct related activities with youth.

*The expectation is that you will be live at all three sessions and an active member of this coaching cohort.  Recordings are not available if you are unable to attend.  Completion of the Asking Purposeful Questions module is a prerequisite for this module. REGISTER HERE Code: AC360ID


Click2Engineering: Engineering Mindset Fall Community of Practice Thursdays September 14, September 28, October 12, and October 26 2:30 – 3:30 EST / 11:30 AM – 12:30PM PST


The Click2Engineering community of practice (CoP) introduces out-of-school time educators to the basics of engineering and leading engineering activities with youth. The CoP is organized around the 10 Practices for an Engineering Mindset, and includes hands-on engineering activities, developing engineering experiences for youth, and learning skills to facilitate engineering practices.  The CoP is 4 meetings over 6 weeks.


You’re a Computational Thinker Wednesday September 20th 12:00-1:00 PM EST / 9:00 – 10:00 AM


Learn what computational thinking means and reflect on the ways in which you are already a computational thinker. Learn how you can help youth develop as computational thinkers and leave with strategies you put into use right away.


Hiring Interns or Teen Leaders for the Summer? Asynchronous Course

Click2ComputerScience’s new course, Teens Learning to Lead, is a great way to help new interns get prepared for working with youth.  It is a leadership course for high school and college-aged people designed for participants to complete on their own, or with a team.  We recommend that teams who will be teaching together over the summer complete the course together. Participants will need a computer and a journal for reflecting on their learning.  The reflection points can be the basis for discussions with a supervisor. mentor or coach that will help participants learn and grow as leaders.

This is a self-directed online learning experience offered at no cost by Click2ComputerScience.  The course is divided into four units with a culminating experience that lets participants apply what they have learned. See Teens Learning to Lead for yourself.


Afterschool Math Plus Curriculum Training Tuesdays: August 15, September 19, October 17, and November 28, 2023 1:00 – 2:00 PM EST 



Date and Time Afterschool Math Plus Curriculum Topic Areas
August 15th

1:00-2:00pm EST

Jump Rope Math: Designing a Math Investigation 

Use bar graphs, line graphs, scatter graphs and Venn diagrams to explore different ways of answering math questions about jumping rope. 

September 19th

1:00-2:00pm EST

MusicMath: Unexpected Math, Creating Rhythms, and Making Rhythm Patterns

Create musical patterns, then repeat the patterns and think about how to represent the patterns using words, pictures, and symbols.

October 17th

1:00-2:00pm EST

MusicMath: Composing Music (with Math!)

Experiment with repeating patterns and create new arrangements using similar sounds in different sequences.

November 14th 

1:00-2:00pm EST

MusicMath: Discovering Music Fractions

Identify and represent parts of fractions using music and explore combinations and permutations, or ways of creating variety while still using the same elements.

December 12th 

1:00-2:00pm EST

MusicMath: Orchestration

Use fractions to create musical compositions, then perform the compositions using found instruments (pans, boxes, pencils, whistles). Create new combinations and permutations for the music fractions.


Note: Each webinar will include strategies to support a positive Math Identity (e.g., role models, career connections, family connections, literacy connections). Previous Training Recordings: April, May, June


Scientific Adventures for Girls Math Curriculum Training 

October 3, 10, and 17th 12:00-1:00PM EST / 9:00-10:00AM PST 


Harnessing the Magic of Math

Join us for a dynamic three-part virtual training series designed to breathe life into math through games, through meaningful, kid-friendly data analysis, and nature exploration. Our sessions focus on strategies that accommodate multiple grade levels and ability levels, helping you meet each student where they are. Prepare to turn your after-school program into a vibrant and engaging mathematical journey!

  • Session 1: Let’s Play

October 3rd 12:00-1:00PM EST / 9:00-10:00AM PST 

Delve into the world where play meets mathematics. In this session, we’ll explore how common game pieces, such as dominoes and dice, can be transformed into effective math teaching and exploration tools. You’ll learn strategies for presenting math concepts in a playful, engaging manner, catering to different grade levels and ability levels. We’ll discuss how games can enhance critical thinking, problem-solving, and cooperative learning among students.

  • Session 2: Data Detectives

October 10th 12:00-1:00PM EST / 9:00-10:00AM PST 

In our second session, we’ll focus on strategies to collect and analyze data in fun and meaningful ways. From measuring the bounce of different balls and exploring exponential decay by eating M&M’s, we’ll demonstrate how students can become active participants in the world of gathering and interpreting data.

  • Session 3: Nature’s Numbers: Exploring Shapes & Patterns

October 17th 12:00-1:00PM EST / 9:00-10:00 AM PST 

In our final session, we will explore the geometric patterns and three-dimensional shapes that exist in the natural world, demonstrating how these can be used to enrich math learning. This session will equip you with strategies to engage all students, from the youngest to the oldest, and from beginner to advanced levels.


Training and Professional Development – June

Training and Professional Development – June

LOCAL OPPORTUNITIES   WEBINARS Asking Purposeful Questions- Evening Cohort Mondays: 6/10, 6/17, and 6/24 at 6PM- 8PM EST / 3PM - 5PM PST Questions begin a path toward discovery, imagination, and STEM exploration. How can we help youth expand and clarify their...

Activities & Resources for Programs – June

Activities & Resources for Programs – June

Activities Interactive online resource: Surfers Against Sewage Virtual Tour | Explore in 360° ( Videos and interactive activities to teach about conservation.  After learning about them, students have the opportunity to protect the resources....

Activities & Resources for Programs – May

Activities & Resources for Programs – May

Activities Activity (engineering):  How Does a Wind Meter Work? | Science Project ( On a windy day it is hard to keep your hat on! The power of the wind can even be strong enough to power large wind turbines to make electricity! In this experiment,...