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Implementation Strategies

We’ve always been amazed at the remarkable ways in which educators, youth workers, community members, and parents take positive youth development principles and make magic happen! Through our Implementation Strategies, we bring you the best examples of practical strategies people like you have developed and used. Use them as inspiration for your own actions . . . or use them as they are to make a difference to the kids in your life. Either way, we know you’ll appreciate each one.


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Building Your Own Relationship Skills - A Tip to Use with Youth

We know helping young people build positive relationships is a key factor in their ultimate success. Sometimes it is difficult for an individual to really know what the roadblocks are to building strong relationships. Here is a resource you can try with young people you work with.  

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Staff Development
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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Getting Young People on Board

If you are looking for ideas on how to get young people involved in their community, one of the best ways is to ask them.  Try reaching out to youth in all the places you find them (school, afterschool and youth serving organization, faith communities, and other systems of care) and sponsoring a student-led community-wide conference.  Read more on how one community increased their youth's impact in what actions needed to take place for a change.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Informal Mentoring
  • Role Models
  • Youth Outreach
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Helping Youth Create Their Own Behavior Guidelines

When children and youth take an active part in creating the guidelines for behavior in the program, they are more likely to take responsibility for their own behavior, and to accept the consequences if a guideline is broken. Author Eileen Wise explains the quick steps to creating guidelines with youth and provides an easy to use handout.  

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Staff Development
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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Assessment Practices and Positive Youth Development

When the link between assessment and Positive Youth Development is made, every classroom experience becomes an opportunity to allow students to engage in, and own, the educational experience. Author Matt Barnes, principal at Eldorado High School in Elorado, CA explains how assessment and positive youth development strategies go hand in hand to increase student motivation and success.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Staff Development
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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Implementing the Student Support Card

Author Deborah Fisher talks with Lee Rush from justCommunity on how and why they have provided the Student Support Card as a way to keep community members aware of what their youth are saying about their community.  Rush sees this effort as a consciousness-raiser and it is making a real difference!

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Role Models
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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College Students Mentor School-Aged Children to Foster Their Success

Authors Deborah Fisher and Susan Savell explain how Communities for Children and Youth Initiative (C4CY) launched the expansion of Colby College's college-based mentoring program to 5 other Maine universities.  This implementation strategy provides research findings from the launch and how to set up your own college mentoring.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Informal Mentoring
  • Mentoring
  • Role Models
  • Staff Development
  • Youth Outreach
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Building Positive Relationships, One Step at a Time

How do adults build relationships that are solid, trusting, safe, respectful, reciprocal and long-lasting? Author Nancy Tellett-Royce provides strategies that work, read how? 

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Informal Mentoring
  • Mentoring
  • Staff Development
  • Youth Outreach
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Using a Thriving Youth Task Force and a Youth Asset Team to Give Youth a Voice in Their Community

How do you meaningfully respond to survey data about your community and its youth? Darien, CT utilized two major strategies to engage community members and empower their young people to have a voice in altering community dynamics. Read more about their efforts in this important Implementation Strategy.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Informal Mentoring
  • Role Models
  • Youth Outreach
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Food of Love: Giving Young People Purpose, Identity & Value

This implementation strategy is an example of how one organization combined the need for nutritional meals for cancer patients and empowering young people can bring about a powerful change to everyone involved.  Read how Food of Love engaged youth of all ages in providing a much needed service in their community. 

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Role Models
  • Youth Outreach
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Student LEAD Team

This Implementation Strategy from Manassas, VA describes how student leaders are empowered to make a meaningful difference in their community. Their efforts include an ambitous food drive to address local needs.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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Using Day One to Launch a Successful School Year

Learn how one school system involves their whole community to welcome the children back to school.  Their intent was to show the young people how important they are as members of the community.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Role Models
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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Change of Heart Club

This video Implementation Strategy describes how public schools in Prince William County, Virginia, engaged and empowered students to make a difference in their school climate. After middle-school students and advisors attended an all-day Change of Heart retreat to address student interactions and the climate of their school, they created a Change of Heart Club to sustain the momentum of what they learned while at the event. Find out more about the club's development and its results in this short video summary.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Staff Development
  • Youth Outreach
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It's in the Stars

This Implementation Strategy outlines a fascinating and informative discovery process former Texas Middle School Principal, Randy Adair, developed to identify those students who might benefit from proactive outreach by teachers and staff. Includes a step-by-step outline of the process that you can use in your own development sessions.

Topics Covered:

  • Engagement
  • Informal Mentoring
  • Staff Development
  • Student-Teacher Relations
  • Youth Outreach
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