Youth Exploring Option (YEO) Afterschool Program

Together Friends Organization Inc. (TFO)’s School-Based After-School STEAM Program. TFO "Youth Exploring Options" (YEO) Afterschool STEAM program utilizes three different learning modes: Synchronous learning, Asynchronous learning, and Unplugged learning. TFO Afterschool format is broken into two segments. One hour of tutoring/instructions and one hour of STEAM career exploration activities and projects. TFO currently meets online virtually with students from two Clayton County middle schools (Jonesboro Middle and Rex Mill Middle Schools) on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, beginning one half hour after the day-time school day ends. TFO will be launching two additional middle schools in the Summer of 2021 (Babb Middle and Pointe South Middle Schools).

Synchronous Learning:

TUTORING - Students are divided into breakout rooms of 6-7 students led by college math and science majors. Students are provided both daytime classwork help, and supplemental handouts related to their daytime lessons. TFO provides a unique Failure Reward system. TFO encourages students to attempt to solve problems without the fear of failing. Students develop a sense of trust and a feeling of safety in an environment in which they can ask questions and attempt to solve problems.

STEAM Career Exploration - Teachers introduce a particular STEAM career topic for that week. The teachers open with a video on a specific career topic. The students discuss the various careers’ that interact with other supporting functions within the organization. Also, the teachers provide virtual field trips that illustrate that particular career in play.

Guest Speakers share with students their daily job responsibilities, their educational paths, and the rewards and challenges from their work. They share their interpersonal strengths and values and why they chose that particular career. They also act as role models by providing motivational encouragement.

Asynchronous Learning:

Students begin their individual research on the particular career subject for that week. The students identify the high school and college requirements to enter that particular field. They identify the skill sets and special interests a person must possess to be successful in that field. Additionally, they identify the salary ranges for both entry level and senior levels for that career. Students then compile their research information into a PowerPoint presentation and present to the class their findings.

Unplugged Learning:

The student works independently or collaboratively using various digital tools to create their PowerPoint presentations.

Weekly STEAM Activities and Projects

The students will be provided the materials to individually build their space glider. This hands-on activity is a combination of synchronous and asynchronous learning. The students receive step-by-step instruction on the assembly of their glider. They will also develop their Engineering Control Plan (ECP) which will provide them the directions and test plans as they build the various phases of their glider. Upon final assembly, the students will launch and record in their student journals the flight results from each launch. We have partnered with several Pilots as guest speakers and coaches for the students to help with this project.