Afterschool Program

The Lobs & Lessons afterschool program serves up to 40 youth a day, offering afterschool programming five days a week. Youth in the program are participants with one of several community partner organizations. Participants come to the center on selected days during the week, with some youth coming to the center once a week and others attending twice a week. The afterschool program gives students the opportunity to participate on and off the tennis court during their time at Lobs & Lessons.

2017-2018 Program Partners

Afterschool Program Activities

Life Skills

Lobs & Lessons utilizes a variety of curriculums and themes throughout the year for lessons. All life skill lessons include an opening discussion, two or more hands-on activities and concludes with a debrief or reflection.

  • National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) curriculums, designed to guide youth through processes including decision making, problem solving and working together towards common goals. Two examples are:
    • First Serve is a life skills curriculum designed to promote education and life skills through the sport of tennis. It takes at least three months to complete each of the three levels (Game, Set and Match).
    • Academic Creative Engagement (ACE) is an academic curriculum connected to the Common Core state and national standards and is designed to encourage academic achievement, health/wellness and social/emotional skills.
  • First Serve is a life skills curriculum designed to promote education and life skills through the sport of tennis. It takes at least three months to complete each of the three levels (Game, Set and Match).
  • Academic Creative Engagement is an academic curriculum connected to the Common Core state and national standards and is designed to encourage academic achievement, health/wellness and social/emotional skills.
  • Healthy lifestyles is embedded throughout the program through physical activity, nutrition lessons and hands-on cooking.
  • College and career exploration lessons introduce participants to the VCU campus, bring in guest speakers to talk about career possibilities and how success in school now equates to success later in life.
  • Mindfulness lessons are incorporated into the program monthly through lessons on and off court emphasizing awareness, breathing, focus and activation.

Tennis

Participants in the afterschool program receive tennis instruction in one-on-one and clinic settings and practice skills in team format play.

Lobs & Lessons utilizes the USTA’s new youth brand, Net Generation, to help youth learn to play the game and become confident while acquiring new skills. They learn about rules of the game, etiquette, sportsmanship, positive attitudes, fair play, self-esteem and how to take responsibility for choices. These life skills are integrated throughout the tennis program, and instructors routinely demonstrate how they apply to situations in all aspects of life. Cross training is also implemented, giving youth an opportunity to experience a different sport each month and understand how those skills can be applied on the court (or in tennis).

Middle school participants benefit from programming that uses the 60′ and 78′ courts with the green and yellow tennis balls. Youth participate in daily warm-up exercises, skills stations and play-based tennis games. The program helps youth develop skills to compete in matches during the middle school tennis program each spring. The program is held in partnership with Richmond Public Schools.

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