October, Where’d You Go?

We had a wonderfully crazy month in October!

Following an inspired, summer leadership session at National Youth Summer Institute this summer, kid-grit joined the ranks of summer learning leaders on October 9 -11th, at the National Summer Learning Conference in Washington, DC.


We are thrilled to partner with NSLA and other organizations that are serving our most vulnerable youth across the nation, especially during the long days of summer.

“A recent study found that students in grades 1-8 lose 17% to 34% of the prior year’s learning over summer break. It also seemed to indicate that kids who fall behind one summer are likely to widen that gap even more as time goes on.”

We look forward to the next year of continued partnerships that bring us impactful experiences.


The 2023 EDU-WELLNESS Conference, held in Southern California, provided participants with the latest trends, policies, data, and interventions concerning Mental Health and Wellness. The EDU-WELLNESS Conference included two notable kid-grit sessions: Slowing Down with Gratitude highlighted the significance of gratitude as a fundamental tool for nurturing happiness, mental awareness and fostering relationships. The session also focused on the development of new habits that encourage learning, promote connection, and cultivate a strong sense of community.


The Creative Writing for Mental Wellness session was a huge hit! A new addition to the robust collection of 30+ kid-grit workshops for adults and students that offers creative writing activities to explore and develop mental wellness. This is just a small taste of what’s to come when kid-grit releases a 25-hour activity guide filled with rich, fun and deep activities for humans of all ages.

Pre-orders are still available. For release on November 21, 2023.

kid-grit introduced another new session: A Time to Play This session centered on the importance of incorporating creativity, breathing exercises, play-based games, and laughter into daily routines. (Ask participants about the belly laugh!)

And, it keeps going!

Hawaii Afterschool Alliance Annual Conference

We took a journey!  Over the past 5 years, at every conference we have attended, we meet the lovely educators from Hawai’i and they say, “Please come to Hawai’i. We need what you have!” And they were right! We learned about the need for strong education programs in areas of social well being and life skills.

“One of the main challenges faced by Hawaii’s schools is the isolation from the mainland US. The distance and time difference make it difficult for schools to access resources, collaborate with educators from other states, and participate in national programs.” Overview of Hawai’i Dep of Education

We hope we brought some enlightenment, skills and play! The event was well executed and even lost power for the first day – they showed resilience and the show went on!  Our sessions were a hot hit in Hawai’i.


We facilitated one of our most requested sessions,  6 Impactful Facilitator Tips . During the time spent with participants, we realized how much Hawai’i needs our resources. Building relationships before teaching content was a big takeaway for this group. We also saw the adults need support in their personal lives as well as in supporting the families within their own small communities sprinkled across the islands.

In a Time to Play, we were joined not only by educators but also 15 high school students! We did activities that promoted self-expression, self-care, collaboration and play. Everyone enjoyed the self-realizations and easy to use, walk away tools.


And the story still keeps going…

Boys & Girls Club of Utah County

The Leadership Team, Regional Leads and Site Directors came together from Southern and Northern Utah for a half day leadership training. This was the last gathering for the year with kid-grit as part of a newly formed partnership at the start of 2023. In this partnership, we have been asked to work with leadership and line staff over the next 2-3 years. Supporting leadership with staff management and work culture and supporting youth development professionals with relationship building tools and implementing curriculum for youth.


The remainder of the afternoon was spent breathing, laughing and moving together with our play-based Time to Play session. The team broke out of their comfort zones and became kids again!


And, lastly…

Utah Afterschool Network Annual Conference

Final stop for kid-grit was in Ogden, UT, for a weekend of networking with others in the field, and learning new strategies to help improve outcomes for youth. It’s always a treat around Halloween and Dia de los Muertos to reconnect with OST friends and make new connections.

Sponsoring, exhibiting, presenting, oh my! kid-grit presented one of our key leader-gritTM offerings, Superteam Meeting to a full audience. It was a quick overview of our 3-hour full length session but participants left with a new perspective about their own leadership and were inspired to lead their next mindful staff meeting.

On Day 2 of Jump Start, we debuted a new topic for the conference, Mindful Conflict Resolutions. We filled up the room and even had special co-facilitators from BGC Utah County who are pros at leading our Safe Space activity. It was a wonderful morning sharing about our personal experiences with conflict and role playing with strategies to help us navigate difficult conversations in the future.


We will be slowing down over the next few months. AND, we are here to support you! If you read this blog this far we want to share one take away, and it’s about you…

Keep doing the most important work in the world, you’re worth it, and the kids deserve it!



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