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How the Assets Framework Aligns with Traditional Native Values By AASB Staff

What do children and youth need from parents, teachers, and other adults to be successful? There’s no specific recipe to follow, or formula to adhere to. Support for youth can come in many different forms. Alaska ICE uses a simple and effective framework to engage Alaskans in creating a positive environment around kids: Developmental Assets. It is based on 60 years of social science research compiled by the Search Institute that identifies 40 assets-- concrete, common sense, positive experiences and qualities essential to raising successful young people. There is close alignment between developmental assets and the traditional Native values that form the foundation of many rural Alaska communities. One of the strengths of the asset approach is its power to honor and strengthen the unity that exists among all people. The assets list is not exhaustive. It is a moldable framework that can be adapted by different cultural groups for the best fit. The more assets a child has, the better they do in school and the less likely they are to engage in unhealthy risk behaviors. Children and youth develop assets through relationships with supportive adults, and all children need multiple supportive adults in their lives.

Everyone has a role in youth success. Here’s what you can do.

In Helping Kids Succeed – our publication ‘by and for Alaskans’ that has introduced the 40 assets framework to many people across the state – we intentionally incorporated and highlighted ideas related to Alaska Native communities. In 10 instances Elders and rural village residents refined the general assets definitions to reflect more traditional ways. View the “Alaskanized” assets list here. Read ‘A Tale of Two Cultures’ (from HKS pp 20-21)

Reading Event in Barrow page 2

Floyd Dryden DVD Project page 3

Websites to Check Out page 4

Kids These Days • March 2011 •

Arts Training Project Funding page 5

Fathers read to their children at Barrow library event

By Sandy Solenberger, for the Arctic Sounder (originally published Jan. 28, 2011)

On Jan. 22 the North Slope Imagination Library held a potluck for families with young children at Tuzzy Library. The theme for the evening was “Stories My Father Told Me.” Fathers and grandfathers were invited to tell stories or read books about dads to kids. About 40 people attended, including 20 children. A new book was given to each child who attended. Conoco Phillips announced at the event that the Friends of Tuzzy Library, which sponsors the North Slope Imagination Library program, will be given a grant of $33,000 to expand services on the North Slope.

Nok Acker tells the story he had heard as a child of the Hungry Porcupine who needed to cross a river. - Jennifer Johnson / Alaska Newspapers

The check was presented at a noon meeting at Tuzzy Library on Feb. 10.

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North Slope Imagination Library is underwritten by Best Beginnings, Rasmuson Foundation, North Slope Borough Healthy Communities Initiative and Ilisagvik College.

For more information on Alaska’s Imagination Libraries, or how to organize an Imagination Library in your community, go to the Best Beginnings website.

Spirit of Youth Annual Awards Dinner

The 2011 Spirit of Youth Annual Awards Dinner is a chance for adults and youth to recognize and celebrate outstanding efforts by teens across the state on behalf of youth, peers, and their communities. Recognizing youth for their contributions to school and/or the local community reinforces these positive behaviors and inspires younger generations to follow their lead. Submit a nomination for a youth in your community today!

March 19, 2011 Downtown Anchorage Marriott Hotel Tickets: or (907) 272-2875

Kids These Days delves into relevant parenting, family topics

Follow KTD radio every Tuesday @ 2pm and 7pm on KSKA, at the website, or join the online community on facebook and twitter. From Show #21 (2/15/2011) Dads These Days

KTD radio is sponsored by AASB’s Alaska ICE.

Web Extras: Teen Boys on Manhood The Good Men Project Kids These Days • March 2011 •

Upcoming Shows Iditarod Education - March 1, 2011 Family Law 101 - March 8, 2011

Interactive anti-bullying DVD project awarded grant

Floyd Dryden Middle School recently received a $10,000 grant to expand a media project initiated and created by 112 7th grade students. The 7th graders integrated writing, technology, Alaska Native culture and the performing arts to create an interactive DVD entitled What Happens Is Up to You to promote constructive reaction to school bullies. What Happens Is Up To You provides students with the opportunity to confront realistic, school-based problems through scenarios acted and narrated by students that challenge their decision-making skills. The project focuses on reducing bullying behaviors and partners with the National Forum on Dropout Prevention Strategies, AASB, Clemson University, and the University of Alaska Southeast. Support for the initial project and dvd production came from a DBH Grant that partnered Floyd Dryden Middle School with AASB.

To obtain a free copy of the interactive dvd or for more information, email Dr. Sigler at:

UAF sponsors summer research academy for secondary students

The Alaska Summer Research Academy at the University of Alaska Fairbanks announces its 11th season of summer programs. The academy provides hands-on, experiential learning in STEM fields for students in junior high and high school. Students attend one module (subject) for the entire two weeks and live in the UAF dorms. Classes are small, with an average of eight students and two instructors. The staff includes UAF faculty, MIT instructors and industry professionals. Younger students are invited to attend the newest program, ASRA Jr., a day program for 7th- and 8th-grade students. The ASRA web site has the most up to date information. Applications are accepted from February 14-28 only. For more information, contact Kate Pendleton, ASRA Coordinator, or 907-474-7221.

Kids These Days • March 2011 •

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“We are currently working on expanding the DVD project by adding peer pressure scenarios this year,” said Dr. Carla Sigler, a counselor at Dryden who offers support on the project. “The new scenarios have been written, actors have been chosen, and we will begin rehearsing and filming soon!”

Watch a detailed description of the student-produced project at Alaska’s Learning Network website:

Web resources to check out

Parent Further - A Search Institute Resource for Families ParentFurther is here to help you raise caring, healthy, responsible, successful kids. This easy-to-use, comprehensive resource seeks to build a unique community that provides access to support and practical, everyday steps to help you with a wide range of parenting issues.

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thread - Connecting Early Care & Education to Alaska In addition to helping ensure that children arrive at school ready to succeed, early care and education programs enable parents to meet the financial needs of their families and businesses to attract and retain a high quality workforce. thread is a statewide network of professionals who work individually with families and early educators to ensure that they are knowledgeable and supported in guiding children to lifelong success.

iCivics - U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor (Ret.) has founded, a fun, effective, and FREE web-based education project to teach students civics and inspire them to be active participants in our democracy. Alaska’s Chief Justice Walter L. Carpeneti, State Chair for iCivics, invites Alaskan educators to use the website’s webquests, games, and lessons as a way to bring civics alive in the classroom. Designed for middle school students, the program is appropriate for grades 3-10.

SLED - SLED is a public service providing easy and equitable access to electronic information. An advisory group of citizens and librarians chooses sites of interest to Alaskans for the SLED menus, ranging from education to family resources, with special sections for young children and teens. SLED was developed by the Alaska State Library and the Elmer E. Rasmuson Library, University of Alaska Fairbanks. Kids These Days • March 2011 •

Connect with youth via the AASB Arts Training

Adults’ supportive relationships with youth are key to unlocking students’ potential, academically and creatively. AASB has found that a great way to connect with youth – building assets and developing positive relationships – is through the arts. On April 14-15 AASB’s Bridget Smith, Lakota Murray and Annie Caulfield will lead the 2011 Artist TOPs Workshop, a free two-day training for anyone who engages young people through the arts. The Artist TOPs is designed to give participants a thorough understanding of the assets framework, as well as a variety of strengthbased tools and techniques for encouraging community engagement and helping youth thrive! Upon completion of the two-day workshop, participating individuals and organizations can apply for funding for their own local project. Space and funding are limited so apply early. Registration ends March 17th.

Arts TOPs participants (individuals and organizations) can apply for funding for their own local project.

TSAS students hard at work on their salmon sculptures

For more info on registering for the Artist TOPs, contact Bridget Smith at (907) 586-1083 or visit

Other communities that have taken advantage of this offering through the years include Chalkyitsik, Sitka, Homer, Ketchikan, Healy, Nondalton, Haines, Whittier, Two Rivers, and more. Past project topics include culinary classes, school murals, acting and playwritng, music, and community arts camps. Anything that engages youth and adults in healthy, asset-building relationships!

Teens Show the Strength of Our Youth from an ASD Press Release -

Two Eagle River teens embarked on a project to find out what kids these days are doing and what they found is that the majority of teens are making good, healthy decisions. Eagle River High School student Ariel Zlatkovski and 2010 graduate Tanner Lyon used data from the most recent Youth Risk Behavior Survey to show positive teen choices. Their results are available in a brochure titled The Strength of Our Youth. The brochure was recently distributed to all ASD high school students and several community organizations. > continue reading on page 6 Kids These Days • March 2011 •

The Strength of Our Youth brochure

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2010 Arts TOPs participant Loren McCue from the Tongass School of Arts and Sciences in Ketchikan applied and received funds for a project involving all 150 students at the school. Each child is building a salmon out of wire, beach glass, beads and found treasures to hang as a “school” in an art installation for summer tourists.

...the Strength of Our Youth cont.

Zlatkovski and Lyon say that research shows Anchorage’s youth are strong, smart and actively making the right choices in five categories: activities, diets, communities, lifestyles and relationships. For example, among the findings: 84 percent are of a healthy weight, 82 percent trust an adult other than their parents, 94 percent don’t bring weapons to school and 85 percent believe cigarettes are dangerous. “It’s not at all reassuring as a student to keep making good choices myself when adults are constantly bemoaning the bad decisions other teens are making,” said Zlatkovski. “It turns out that’s just a small percentage. The Strength of Our Youth is an incredibly powerful and moving message. It’s a positive -- rather than a negative -- message; one of celebrating what we have instead of bemoaning what we don’t.” Michael Kerosky, supervisor of the district’s Safe and Drug Free Schools program, came up with the strength-based idea which was implemented by Lyon and Zlatkovski. He said the results show the truth, that the majority of kids are doing well and that there seems to be a disconnect about what people think and what is happening. Kerosky said he hopes this information will help alleviate peer pressure.

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“It’s targeted for kids in the middle, who don’t want to do negative things but feel pressured,” Kerosky said. “They’ll hopefully see this brochure and realize they’re not in the minority and they’ll make better decisions; it will help them realize that they are doing what the majority of other teens are doing.”


of Us Feel Like We Matter in the Community


of Us Volunteer At Least One Hour a Week

Read the entire press release here.

Produced by: The Association of Alaska School Boards’ Alaska Initiative for Community Engagement 1111 West 9th Street, Juneau, AK 99801 (907) 586-1083 Fax: (907) 586-2995 E-mail: Web:


of Us Trust One Adult Other Than Our Parents

The contents of this newsletter were developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal government.

Kids These Days • March 2011 •

Kids These Days - March 2011  

AASB's Quarterly electronic newsletter that provides news and information related to parents, families, youth and teens from our statewide p...