By Abby

Questions on Repeat

One of the practices from my time in conventional classrooms that still serves me is that of listening for signs that I wasn’t clear enough in communicating. One such sign is when I’m getting the same questions repeatedly; sometimes it means our group isn’t practicing listening very well yet, but 98% of the time it means I need to pause, rewind, and get us all on the same page.
The same questions have been popping up in my email for a bit over a week now, regarding agreements and definitions across the ALC Network. This makes sense: part of the reason I got involved in the Network reset over the past year was that we’d developed processes and patterns that were out of sync. We’d also worked hard to anticipate what our growth would look like and create processes that would serve it, but the reality that emerged was (of course) slightly different than we imagined. 2017 brought an invitation to breathe, assess, sort through our clutter, and start readjusting. What I’m hearing in 2018 is that the mixed messages–some of our tools had gotten outdated and some hadn’t–and lack of guidance where tools had gone offline altogether have been disorienting for folks who are newer to these conversations.  We–the first and second generation ALFs who have been looking beyond our individual projects for the past few years–didn’t communicate clearly. So this blog post is my pause-rewind-realign offering. It’s intended as a conversation [re]starter for our current ALF community, a reflection of where we have been, and currently are, rather than a proclamation of any carved-in-stone Truths. I copied these wordings of the questions from @liliana.
1.  What is the agreement and procedure to break the agreement and deal with challenges (conflicts or so…) for new ALCs?
Organizations that identify as ALCs are expected to sign up for membership in the ALC Network via our website. We ask for an annual contribution of $95 per project, and we put their ALFs in conversation with ALFs from across the network upon receiving their sign-up form. There isn’t a specific set of agreements listed on the membership sign-up page yet, but the hope is that anyone who reads our website and pays for a membership is doing their best to root their project in our philosophy. When we were small enough that all new projects were in conversation with other projects (and how-do-we-run-this-network conversations) during the year then gathering together in North Carolina over the summer, our relationships were strong enough to orient each other. Having evolved into a more decentralized, linguistically diverse, and far-flung coalition, we clearly need to re-imagine our onboarding process. I’m hoping those folks invested in these questions can channel some inspiration and insight into making that happen in the next few months.
In terms of dealing with challenges and conflicts, new (and all) projects are encouraged to ask the community for support as needed, either on Slack or by emailing someone they trust or joining a call…whatever works for them. When someone has a concern about an ALC operating in a way that’s out of integrity with our principles, they have tended to first check-in with the community in question and then to talk to folks at more established ALCs (so ALC-NYC and Mosiac usually, so far). We haven’t needed to create a more formal process yet, but I love that the process that seems to be emerging echoes our conflict resolution process that we use at ALC-NYC and among ALFs. I imagine a more formal process would just make that echoing intentional and explicit.
Since there is no formal contract, there is no formal ‘here’s how to get out of your contract,’ but organizations that have opted not to be/become ALCs just let us know. They are taken off the map, have their access to our docs and internal communication channels changed, and are expected to stop using our branding.
2.  What is the agreement and procedure to break the agreement and deal with challenges (conflicts or so…) for new ALFs?
Same as above.
3.  What is the agreement and procedure to break the agreement and deal with challenges (conflicts or so…) to setup ALCs?
Same as above…We’re really into processes and agreements that are both light and effective enough to work across contexts 😉
4.  What is the agreement and procedure to break the agreement and deal with challenges (conflicts or so…) to organize ALFs?
The network reflects ALCs in relationship. An ALC’s existence and relationships reflect the work of that community’s ALFs. We are responsible for supporting each other, self-organizing, and holding each other accountable. This community is ours to care for.
Agreements for ALFs, beyond the implicit work-to-facilitate-in-ways-informed-by-our-philosophy, used to get listed on our ALF Community Mastery Board (and likely will once again, someday soon). The main agreements are to be respectful of people, mindful of their time, and intentional about how you engage. We have lots of notes about what ALFing from ALC principles looks like, and individual ALCs will have their own agreements for facilitators in their spaces.
When there is a challenge or conflict with an ALF, we follow our conflict resolution process. It’s outlined on the Newbie page and matches the process we use at ALC-NYC with our school community. First, whoever is having the problem talks to the person they’re having the problem with (after taking some breaths and deciding what it is they want to communicate). If the problem persists, they ask another ALF for help talking to the person. If the problem still says a problem, the ALF having the problem convenes a Culture Committee. The parallel practice in other settings is calling for a Circle. In ALC settings, a CC is a gathering of trusted community members committed to supporting conflict resolution efforts and tending the well-being of the community. With kids at school, this usually looks like a group spending some time in a literal circle to talk through the situation; with adults across the network, there is more often an initial group call and then a series of follow-up calls. Similarly to how we practice honoring the decisions of those who attend meetings we miss, we practice honoring the decisions of those attending to CCs we’ve missed.
When an ALF no longer identifies as an ALF, they just have to say so.
5.  What is the agreement about photos? videos? 
Under the agreement to respect each other is the expectation that where individuals have a reasonable expectation of privacy they will be asked for consent before being recorded. Since by definition consent is specific, informed, and reversible, they need to know what plans there are for sharing the recordings and they need to be able to withdraw consent. Remember there may be additional legal considerations for recordings including minors.
6.  What is the agreement about contacts?
We established communication agreements for the ALF community in 2015 during a change-up meeting. These are recorded on our ALF Community Trello (a tool that fell out of use when people stopped attending the calls it held the notes from) as: “Keep posting relevant to the charter of the tool, no spam (irrelevant or inappropriate messages); Respect each other; Email directly to individuals when reply all is not relevant; During calls, default = mute mic unless you are the person speaking.” So essentially, communications should honor our principles of respecting each other and each other’s time.
Through aligning with the ALC philosophical roots, ALFs commit to trust-building, caring without controlling, and contributing to a culture of generosity…practices that shape how we show up in our relationships. Since how we communicate also impacts the nature and health of our relationships, many ALF trainings include sessions about how we talk and how we listen. ALFs will have different favorite resources and guiding reflective questions. Some of mine are on the Favorite Resources page of this blog.
7.  What is the agreement about money?
Money! It’s not the only form of wealth or the form we necessarily care most about. It’s also necessary so our ALFs can eat, pay rent, and keep sharing support with folks whose doors are too far away for us to go knock on.
ALC members are expected to contribute funds annually to keep the shared resources we use to cohere the network online and updated. Most of our resources are open-source under the Creative Commons license that asks folks not to use our work for personal profit, to share as we share, and to give attribution where due.
When we find ourselves with enough money to cover our expenses reliably, we’ll need to convene a work group to decide how to manage what’s left. It’ll be fun…but we’re not there yet.
At the moment, Tomis and I are the people watching our finances, which are managed through our 501c3 nonprofit. You can ask us for information and updates at any time.
8.  What is the agreement about the decision taken by the board?
Since ALFs are the network, we make decisions about our agreements, processes, and culture. We used to tackle big questions all together at retreat weekends, summer gatherings, and monthly calls. We also have encouraged those feeling inspired to take on the role of coherence holder for whatever project they care about and invite others to join them in forming a ‘work group.’ We’ve had work groups form to create reports, survey ALFs, and plan retreats. Our last working group ran through spring 2017, and it was open to those invested in defining-the-network kinds of questions. It fizzled out when folks schedules changed over the summer, though I host a monthly network-themed call to make sure there’s still an opening for folks who want to try to bring that work group back.
Aside from the network that is and acts, there is an organization–the ALC Network–that’s a nonprofit registered in North Carolina. Between its inception in 2014 and the start of its reset in 2017, the board of this nonprofit met a few times a year to check in on the health of the organization, make sure paperwork//roles were in order, and review finances.
The current board continues to honor the legal responsibilities of a nonprofit board, and we also have decided to give as generously as we can in the role of what I hear Quakers refer to as an ‘Oversight Committee.’ When the ALFs previously tending the network ecosystem flagged in the fall of 2016 that our culture was in need of a reset and our practices needed to be realigned with our principles, Mercer and I committed to join whoever from that original crew was ready to work on this project with us and start what would clearly be a rather involved and challenging process. By the end of 2017, the folks coherence holding for the reset were also the folks remaining on the Network board: Tomis, Mercer, and me.
The role and composition of the board is set to change through the next few months, but legally a board is responsible for ensuring the actions of an organization are aligned with its mission and making decisions that prioritize the well being of the organization. So while we practice–and are committed to practicing–decisions being made by and for ALFs, technically the board has the power (and responsibility) to block decisions that would endanger the organization or put us out of integrity with our mission.
9.  What is the agreement about drive documents?
Drive is one of our communication tools! Follow the communication agreements outlined above (or updated ones, as those become available).
Access to drive is granted to member ALCs, with the expectation that they will be responsible about who they add/remove from their communities. Most work is licensed through Creative Commons. Please use shared resources mindfully and contribute to them generously.
10.  Who can be called ALF?
Who indeed…At the first ALF Summer gathering, we came up with a system of levels, the requirements of which were outlined in rubrics, which aspiring and practicing ALFs moved through using a series of forms and peer reviews. We were trying to accomplish many goals with one tool: give people guides for self reflection, set a norm of groups entitling each other based on their experiences of each other, clarify the expectations attached to different roles, protect the meaning of the title ALF through some kind of check system, and generate documentation so we could check who our ALFs were.
The rubric we made for basic “Am I an ALF?” peer reviews is still relevant as a tool for supporting ALF self-reflection and for communities or workshop groups practicing Peer Reviews. It’s here: ALF Personal & Peer Review – PeerReviewForm
But, to borrow Ryan’s words, there was never going to be just one path to becoming an ALF. Not if we were truly dedicated to open-source sharing and empowering communities to grow ALCs adapted to their contexts. At our East Harlem flagship, we relate to facilitation as a practice. You know you’re a facilitator when you catch yourself facilitating and others relating to you as an ALF. More interesting for me than locating the moment one “becomes” a facilitator (or an artist or equestrian or a reader or or or) is the journey that unfolds from that point on. When we talk about our past and future selves, we sometimes talk about my “baby ALF” days or about Mel “levelling up.” We were just joking last week about the “next level” NYC ALF skills of knowing where there are restrooms along a field trip route and what to have in your bag when taking groups of kids on the subway…which probably are not ALF skills at all for folks most other places 😉 We give regular attention to our personal and team facilitator-ing, checking our well-being and looking for ways to better support each other’s growth. We can all confidently identify as ALFs at this point, trusting our depth of experience and knowing our community would gladly vouch for us, and we’re on to that fun game of “Oh! You’re an ALF, too? What kind? Where are you at in your journey?” from a place of sincere curiosity and commitment to replicating in network relationships the care and support we practice here with each other.
Checking in about this blog post (I loop our crew here in on almost all of my network business, and I’m so grateful to trust their thoughtful feedback and suggestions even when our here-at-home business is already a lot), we talked about how our practice, sharing, and helping grow new ALFs gives the world modeling that we hope will both help people answer this question and develop folks’ ability to sense when someone calling themself an ALF is out of integrity in doing so. Rather than stress about what a few million strangers may choose to call themselves and how to control that, we’re focused on offering illustrations of the role that set root/principle-aligned expectations and inspire desire to come play at our level. Which you should; it’s a delightful, infinite game.
Feeling inspired to organize an ALF call to update the CMB? To craft our ALF agreements into a mini manifesto of sorts to put at the top of our ALF webpage? To gather a work group to upgrade our new-member-onboarding-process?
Do it! Message me if there’s any way I can support you <3

ALF Resource: Intergenerational Trauma

After reflecting a bit on how I’ve been voraciously consuming nonfiction without pausing to share out my learning–waiting, I think, to see the whole tapestry it’ll become once I weave the pieces together–I’ve decided to push myself to share my draft-y notes. Here’s the first attempt:

The other night, I got home and decided to Google around for a resource or two on working with Intergenerational Trauma. Sometimes I relate to facilitation as a mix of midwifery and healing work…and then I end up looking for frameworks that can inform my practice and help me better serve my relationships.

After a few *eh* articles, this video came up in my results. I saw how long it was and almost didn’t click. Then I decided to just listen to the intro while I did some dishes. Over an hour later, the talk ended and I discovered myself with two pages of doodled notes and a cup of cold tea. My head was buzzing with how affirmed my sense that ALF work is healing work was, with the impact of pausing to really look at the evolution of violences across time, and with curiosity about the learning journey of the speaker, Nene Kwasi Kafele.

Notes below the video. For tl;dr folks, here’s a quote:

“Nurture, cultivate, support the genius of young people…in ways that are safe, respectful, and healthy. Be with them on this journey in a way that respects their lived experiences and sees their cultures as legitimate…”

Noted that an environment for survivor youth should be safe, reassuring, supportive, effective, providing stabilization, helping them see the paths forward in terms of addressing the problem and building their own resilience

Youth agency is crucial

Opportunities to express, process, and name needed supports in groups and individually are helpful

…so to this point describing much of what our school feels like…

Notes to be aware of coping tendencies like psychic numbing, of the repeated mention of CBT as helpful in trauma response management/breathing/visualizations

Notes on how “trauma” as a term/concept is highly Western, with introduced terms Mengamaazi: Willful, organized, coordinated, prolonged destruction and suffering and Maafa: Disaster, overwhelmingly terrible catastrophe. (Kiswahili)

*just* discovered all the resources at while checking my spelling

Thinking of looking more into which traumas our institutions reinforce as well as how to reckon with the dance between survivors of survivors and survivors of perpetrators generations on

Note on ALC Logos

With new variations on our logos coming out (and start-up groups showcasing their creativity all the time), I remembered this email exchange where @tomis explained a bit about what the deal is with our branding guidelines and @spence suggested he put something together to share on the topic.

In case it takes Tomis a while to get around to writing such a thing with all his being-a-new-dad happenings, I’m just going to share a snippet of that email. He wrote:

“The brand guidelines were created by Eric Friedensohn [who designed and donated our logos, is mad talented on top of being so generous, and who is definitely worth following on social media]. You can see more about his process for this project here.

He gave us four colors as a starting point so we wouldn’t have to jump into picking coherent color pallets, but was clear that his design sensibilities (embedded into the guidelines) would not be disrupted by choosing different colors. You can see that the forty-ish icons he made for us a little later involve all kinds of colors.
So, the thing is that we, collectively as the ALC Network who use this logo/brand, have the right to change any part of it we want or disregard the guidelines — he’s given us this as a gift. That said, it’s my opinion that Eric is good at what he does and that the guidelines serve an important purpose…”
There. Shucks, Tomis. Couldn’t have said it better (or, frankly, that well in the first place).



ALF Page Jan. 2018 Update

How does someone even end up at I honestly am not quite sure.

What I know is that the page used to essentially be a flyer for the ALF Summer super-programs in Charlotte, NC. As we started to see other ALCs hosting various retreats, trainings, and workshops starting in 2016, the page morphed into a listing of those programs. On the one hand, this was lovely. It was helpful to have a place where all our events were listed, and folks like me who have been around for a bit enjoyed seeing signs of our growth.

For some time, though, a few things about the page had been bothering me. First, focusing the “agile learning facilitator” page on marketing events felt way too narrow. Maybe I’m too in the work to see clearly, but for me a facilitator page should be about sharing the vibrance and brilliance of our community. It should certainly have some resources for aspiring facilitators, including events, but I also wanted it to share more of a story. Like…who are we? Especially as we’ve grown past the small cohort in NYC that we once were, I wanted the page to illustrate that we’re many different people from many different backgrounds all doing this work.

The January 2018 revision of the page was a first step towards what I’m hoping will be a richer ALF page. It’s got some portraits from various ALCs’ staff pages, a link to the Facilitation Guide that Mel put out for us last spring, and it’s now got a promise that links to ALF-generated content will come soon…alongside the much anticipated links to events that the page has become somewhat known for.

Almost certainly, my next edit will simply be posting those links and dates.

Eventually, though, I’d like to get snippets of ALF stories incorporated, in their own words. I asked our web-tech team about the possibility of building some kind of form+map that would let ALFs post their own events (and maybe blogs or social media accounts) rather than submitting them to me for manual posting…though they have to convince the website to stay up and running before they get to focus on optimizations and upgrades. Finally, I *think* some kind of a resource page for aspiring facilitators might be a useful thing to create and link to.

All things in time, though…;)

Network Membership Update

“What does it mean to be a member of the ALC Network?”*

This question has been following me a lot for the past few years. In the past 13 months, I’ve given it a bunch of intentional thought–often aloud and in dialogue with others similarly exploring it–and I’ve reached enough clarity that I finally edited the “membership” pages and form on the ALC Network website this week. Here’s where I’m at (and notes on the edits):

We become members of communities when we show up and contribute. I grew up in a steel town watching “moms’ clubs,” church consortiums, local farmers, and neighbors on various streets practicing community…all of which convinced me that “community” is something one practices–like love or facilitation–and that takes a combination of time and care to grow. People join our local ALC community this way, but paying $95 for access to an online community feels slightly different.

Growing up in community also taught me that sharing resources, including information, empowers us to hold and grow each other better. I felt this spending summers at the local library as a kid, and it showed up again in college when I studied museum politics (like…who got access when, and to what, decided by whom?) All this feels particularly important in this “knowledge economy” age…so it’s important to me that we’re not relating to ALC Membership as giving fees to some invisible gatekeepers for access to the wealth of knowledge they control.

This invites a separate inquiry about how to be responsible while being transparent: sharing generously, protecting folks’ privacy, and giving credit where it’s due…all at once.

Membership, though. Right now, it’s whatever we make of it. The ALC Network’s main functions are currently to facilitate connection between ALCs and the dissemination of resources about our work. I see that changing in the next few years–what we needed in our first five years will not be what we need in the next ten. Presently, though, the Network’s main source of revenue is membership fees and its main expenses are related to running our online communication platforms. So “membership” currently involves a pretty tidy exchange (that isn’t *quite* sufficient to fund Network endeavors yet, but we’re working on that).

“Members” contribute a fee annually to enable the Network to keep communication channels up and open. With those channels, they get access to resources–documents, other facilitators, call invitations, chances to collaborate on projects that shape how this movement grows–though the extent to which they use this access (and contribute back to the community’s wealth) is up to them. Lots of our resources are open-source, and most of us are Google-able, so a non-member *could* find most of the information that members get tidily packaged on their own. There’s nothing keeping someone from looking through the 40+ ALC websites and social media accounts for photos of our whiteboard notes or contact info for different facilitators. Knowing that, for me, shifts the dynamic from paying a gatekeeper to see hoarded treasures to chipping in to keep the local library (which we co-steward and staff) open.

***There’s politics of language, translation, and internet access to dance with in that metaphor, but knowing we’re already working on those topics as a five-year-old organization gives me hope we’ll make reasonable progress in this next season of our growth.***

I said “community” in the parentheses above, after just starting this whole thing by saying signing up for ALC Membership feels different than becoming a community member. There’s certainly a community of the folks who make up the ALC network…it’s more that, in my experience, “joining” a community doesn’t immediately confer recognition of membership. That takes people getting to know you…it takes relationship. So those just signing up for Membership–like those enrolling or volunteering at an ALC–get an introduction, and then the more organic process of relationship-building and getting engaged with the community begins. You follow?

All that to talk about some quick website updates…

Our Membership process online wasn’t super clear before, but it was oriented towards organizations, specifically schools and start-up groups. Once an organization signed up for membership, they’re trusted to decide which team members to pull into the network conversation. They may add all staff and a founding parent to Slack. They may add one facilitator to Slack and another to Drive. Whatever…we trust them to determine who their community caretakers are and what will be most supportive to them. There’s conduct agreements, for sure, but essentially if a community says ‘yes, this person’ then those of us in the wider community start by trusting that.

We’re keeping most of this process unchanged, though planning to replace the “we request an additional $10 for every 10 kids over 20 you enroll” thing with transparent data about Network revenue-expenses and a “donate to our 501c3 here” button. The major difference is a response to requests for individuals who want to get involved with the ALC Network but don’t want to do so as representatives of their projects or schools. New to the membership page is a separate rate and benefits list that lets individuals join us…and a bonus is that while planning this we gratefully received a donation from one of our earliest ALC students of two logos for use by members who aren’t ALCs.

Long hours of conversation have gone into the question of ALC Membership, and I’m sure they’ll continue to do so as our growth challenges us to keep growing our processes and procedures. In the meantime, I’m really excited about this step and eager to see what new dimensions to the question it brings up.

*Are you a total newbie to ALC-land? That’s cool. Know that we–all of us active community members across the world–ARE the ALC network. We’re the ecosystem, the organism, the movement…whatever you want to call it. What I’m mostly talking about here is the US-based 501c3 nonprofit that’s behind and many of the communication channels facilitators depend heavily on to connect with staff at other schools when they want to seek or offer support. I tend to write “ALC Network” when talking about this entity as something distinct from our more organic network. Cool? Cool.

“I’m Bored” Toolbox

@catmooy and I opened this old draft blog post and asked people to help us finish it. We asked what people do when they’re






and they (@kirkorovfan @thewitchqueen908 @serenagermany @simoneboss @theanchor @heartabby @aidenstarwars) helped us come up with this list:

Read a book. Play with stuff that’s here. Look at a plant up close and explore it. Watch out the window (for mommy?) Try a new game. Search stuff up. Listen to music. Watch Mario Maker play-through videos on YouTube. Think about mom. I play games. Talk to people. Draw. Scroll through Instagram. Look up things on Wikipedia. Play piano. Look at animals. Sit around. Think about stuff. Think about stuff. Stretch. Write. Practice Duolingo. Dance. Go outside.

Guess we have one more to add…Interview people!

Hope that helps 🙂


[Guest Post] Siena’s week

makeup      snack       lnuch



She says:

What I liked this week was that I made a picture for my mom. These are my intentions for next week: to make make-up, eat snack, and eat lunch. I wrote them. Now we’re going to look up how to make make-up.

[Guest Blog] Jan’s Friday Blog 9/15

I like that I can build stuff, like out of wood. I also like that I can swing on the hammocks outside. I like that I can read the animal books that are in the school.

I like that I can cook corn. In other schools, you cannot cook corn outside. I am happy that I don’t have to do homework like in other schools you do.

That’s all.


ALC-NYC Summer Planning (list)

When it’s time:

  • Explore why you’re interested in organizing a facilitator training.
  • Re-read some anti-colonialism/anti-oppression texts.
  • Reflect on your experiences facilitating and then as someone holding an ALC community. What roles and topics can you rock? Which ones do you need to find partners to take up?
  • Set personal intentions and goals


  • Gather a team
  • Align team intentions/goals
  • Pick a location and a format


  • Set a date for a team check-in, with each person’s deliverables clearly requested
  • Research rates for similar programming in your area
  • Research rates for providing food so folks can stay in flow
  • Research rates for (and availability of) the space you’ll use
  • Brainstorm other possible needed/wanted accommodations
  • Figure out rates charged by guest teachers and facilitators
  • Determine accounts/deadlines for managing money
  • Determine where you’ll build your website/application forms
  • Get familiar with relevant local legalities/insurance
  • Write up offerings/content ideas for the program

At your team check-in:

  • Decide scaffolding for the program (daily rituals, openings and closings, etc)
  • Commit to any offerings/content which require advance planning + designate CH to plan
  • Do some math to set rates (for a reasonable target # of participants) that will let you cover your costs
  • Create a finances/budgeting spreadsheet and establish a CH to handle money things
  • Decide whether people will register or go through an application process, and what that entails (in NYC, so far, people register…elsewhere they apply and do interviews before being accepted)
  • Take on planning tasks
  • Determine how you’ll update each other until your next check-in

Planning Tasks (sort-of in order):

  • Arrange a space
  • Build a webpage (with a registration deadline and who to contact with questions clearly listed)
  • Create a registration form, linked to your webpage
  • Share the webpage
  • Arrange catering (+other provisioning)
  • Arrange childcare, if offering it
  • Tell parents at hosting school that there’s bonus school (or start a summer camp) and do whatever paperwork your state/entity requires to make that happen
  • Coordinate with any guest teachers/facilitators
  • Keep sharing the webpage

As people fill out your form:

  • Keep track of who is signing up, their contact info, their intentions, their program interests, their fee commitments, their support requests, and other helpful information on a spreadsheet shared across your team
  • Reply to inquiries
  • Keep sharing your webpage (especially 1 month, 1 week, 3 days before registration closes)


*****Invoicing dates/deadlines depend on whether you need to collect deposits to be able to book the space+caterer+etc. In NYC, we’re fortunate to have worked with collaborators who haven’t needed numbers until the week before and payment until the first day of the program. *****

At your registration deadline:

  • ASSESS. Do you want to extend your deadline or let late applicants email you to be considered? Are you content or totally full? Keep in mind a handful of people will likely bail or not show.
  • Update your website
  • Send a confirmation/greeting email to everyone already on board, with notes about what to expect in the coming weeks

*****People will be enrolling and dropping out right up to the start of the program–and sometimes during it–if you let them. Your team will want to decide how adaptable you want to be and communicate that clearly. *****

1 Month Before:

  • Send an email confirming program dates, asking for dietary restrictions/allergies, and letting people know how to pay you
  • Contact the caterer (and any guest teachers) with a preliminary count and any other information that would be useful to them. For food, I usually do participants+staff+2, just in case.
  • Send out invoices for program fees
  • If you have kids coming, send whatever communications you need to so their parents are reminded of the times/dates/program type

Two Weeks Before:

  • Email the details from the website (address, dates, times), newer details (childcare rates, what to bring), and suggested pre-program reading (really just the Network website…). Invite questions. Get people thinking about how they’ll introduce themselves.
  • Update spreadsheets
  • Follow up with any parties necessary. Likely catering numbers have changed or someone misplaced their invoice or two people need to be connected to figure out housing or or or…
  • Figure out with your team which offerings are going to be scheduled and which are optional. Determine CHs for each, and plan to procure any supplies needed.
  • If you have kids coming…email to remind parents of the times/dates/expectations

One Week Before:

  • Send a welcome email asking recipients to reply with an introduction. Start them off by introducing yourself or selves. Remind them what time you’re excited to see them on the first day of the training 😉
  • Send confirmations and payments.
  • Update and review spreadsheets
  • Set the space
  • If you have kids coming…email to remind parents times/dates/expectations/what-to-pack

The First Day:

  • You know best what you need to set yourself up…Do that…
  • Go!