Neighborhood & Community Services

703-324-4600 TTY 711

Chris Scales
Division Director

NCS Connects: After School

NCS Connects
NCS Connects Logo
Welcome to NCS Connects, a virtual resource library for youth, teens, parents and guardians!


Exploration Station & Previous Activities

CoachArt Teen girl studying– Resources for parents, guardians and caregivers who want to provide enriching crafts for children with physical conditions, plus 10 easy crafts for kids with motor disabilities.

Common Sense Education – Special education apps and websites recommended by educators and experts, including apps that address foundational skills, boost social and emotional skills, and help kids with autism follow a schedule.

Into the Book – A multimedia package designed to improve elementary students' reading comprehension, as well as their ability to think and learn across the curriculum. Includes nine 15-minute classroom videos teaching children how to be strategic readers.

LD Resources Foundation – A list of assistive technology tools that are helpful for learning disabilities, dyslexia and ADHD.

Learning Ally – A proven accommodation for kids with reading-based learning differences such as dyslexia. Human-read audiobooks for kids will help them focus, visualize and understand content.

Reading Rockets – Research-based reading strategies, lessons and activities designed to help young children learn how to read and help struggling readers build fluency, vocabulary and comprehension skills.

Previous Activities

ABC Movement for Spring

Bookworm Workout

Roll Some Physical Activities

Five-Sense Scavenger Hunt

Action Charades

Daily Alphabet Exercise

Chalk Cardio Fun

Common Ground

Young boy writing

Fairfax County Public Schools Blog – Find creative ideas and resources to keep children busy and learning at home in the "Healthy Minds" section of the FCPS blog (updated weekly). 

Heifer International – Downloadable books, mazes, word searches and more from Heifer International’s school programs, with topics in social studies (geography, economics), science and language arts. Designed for students in kindergarten through grade 5.

Into the Book – A multimedia package designed to improve elementary students' reading comprehension, as well as their ability to think and learn across the curriculum. Includes nine 15-minute classroom videos teaching children how to be strategic readers.

Previous Activities

Bookworm Workout

ABC Movement for Spring

NCS Mad Libs

Math Escape Room

Daily Alphabet Exercise

Math Magic Triangle

Write About It

Apple Tree Math

Figurative Language

Fun Math (video); Instructions (PDF)

Graduation Letter

Future Headlines

Math Dominoes Family Game

Creative Writing About Nature

Unearthing Your Global Poetry

All About My Summer Virtual Journey

Family Strengths

Family Trivia

Muffin Tin Coin Counting

Teen boy playing guitar

Fairfax County Public Library's Virtual Programs – Digital programs for all ages include early literacy services, online storytimes, book clubs, writing challenges, scavenger hunts, comic cons and more. 

Kennedy Center’s Digital Stage – Watch original works, new clips, and explore a vast archive of performances.

Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems – Daily art lessons with the Kennedy Center’s Education Artist-in-Residence at Home.

National Museum of African American History and Culture – Educational resources for families, and an opportunity to explore items from the collection.

National Museum of Natural History – Take self-guided, room-by-room tours of select exhibits and areas within the museum as well as past exhibits no longer on display.

NPR Music – A list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and genre, with links to streaming platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

NPR Tiny Desk – Intimate video performances, recorded live at the desk of “All Songs Considered” host Bob Boilen.

PBS UNUM Ken Burns – Explore American history through scenes selected from across 40 films.

Previous Activities

Rock Painting

Emoji Bookmark

Community Mapping

Origami w/ Mr. Earl (video)

Mosaic Window Art (video)

Worldly Monument

Paper Flowers

Vision Boards

Fun Word Sign (video)

Yarn Art Letters

"Not an Artist" Art

Heart Maps

Cereal Box Hearts

Mosaic Picture Frame (video)

I Can't Imagine Life Without...

Origami Bag (video); Instructions (PDF)

Heart Friendship Bracelet

Celebrate Your Family History

Family & Friends Circle

All About Me

Get to Know You Game (video)

Inside-Out Self Portrait

The Family We Choose

Family Hand Wreath

Family Mix Tape

Balloon Paint

Popsicle Stick Mask

Paper Heart Chain (video); Instructions (PDF)

DIY Paper Roses

Wooden Washer Necklace

Gimp Key Chain

Bright Future

Continue the Picture

Simple DIY Puzzle (video)

Affirmation Frame (video)

Diversity Flag

Salt Art

Nature Self-Portrait (video)

Paper Beads

Paracord Bracelet (video)

Weave Hanging

Nature Exploration Art

Nature Discovery to Save My Earth

Bookmark Design

Me on the Maps (video)

Kindness with Chalk (video)

7 Wonders Board Game

Family Flag/Crest

Paper Napkin Garland

My Shape Book

Superhero Self-Portrait (video)

Origami Swan (video)

Upcycled T-Shirt Tote Bag

Journal Personalization

Henna on Paper

Gratitude Chain

Celebration Squash Book (video)

Thank You Card

Celebration Photo Frame (video)

Community Bookmark

Puffy Sidewalk Paint

Art on Canvas

Butterfly Finger Puppets

Teen girl stretching

Fairfax County Park Authority's Virtual Exploration Center – Find tools to help you stay healthy, connected and engaged from your home or neighborhood.

NIH: Exercise and Physical Activity Tracking Tools – Use these tracking tools to help stick to your exercise routine and see your progress.

USDA: MyPlate Kitchen – Explore free recipes and create your own cookbook.

Our Minds Matter – Virtual weekly wellness meetings that promote social connectedness and the development of healthy habits and coping skills for students. View the Summer Camp Playlist for more wellness videos and resources from OMM.

Well Beings – Mental health challenges come in many forms, from all walks of life. Explore video stories to see how others deal with the challenges and address the stigmas.

Previous Activities

Circuit Training w/ Jerald (video)

Bigfoot Race

Vegetarian One-Pot Meal

At-Home Manicure

Stress Relief/Self-Awareness (video)

30-Day Crunch Challenge

Roll Some Physical Activities

Soccer Basics (video)

My Identity (see video demonstration)

Five-Sense Scavenger Hunt

Action Charades

Jump Rope Basics 

My Identity (video)

Letter to Self

Basketball Dribbling Workout (video)

Stress Relief

Values Exploration

Get to Know Me Card Game

Make Your Own Stress Ball

Calm Down Cards

Stretching w/ Ms. Janet (video); Instructions (PDF)

MY Plate Healthy Eating

Chalk Cardio Fun

Family JAM Jar

Discovering the World Around Us Scavenger Hunt

Cooking w/ Caroline: Asian Ramen Salad (video)

Lavender Body Scrub (video)

Vision Board/Goal Setting

Cooking: Brussels Sprouts

Health & Wellness Collage

Workout Dice

Circuit Workout: Jump Rope (video)

My New Vision

Popcorn Necklace

Leg Raises and "The Superman"

Build Your Own Board Game

Intro to Pickleball (video)

Our Minds Matter: Summer Camp Playlist (for teens only) – Wellness videos designed to provide teens with the resources and tools to change their school culture around mental health.

Our Minds Matter – Virtual weekly wellness meetings that promote social connectedness and the development of healthy habits and coping skills for students.

Fairfax Prevention Coalition – Virtual trainings on topics such as drug trends, synthetic drugs, nicotine, alcohol, and more.

Previous Activities

Nicotine Truth Quiz


JUULing Fact Sheet

Smoke Search

Tobacco on the Big Screen

Alcohol and Body Path

Secret Decoder

Why Do It?

Effects of Eating Marijuana

Marijuana Myths

The (UN)Truth in Marketing

Addiction Word Search

The Facts About Alcohol Use (video)

The Facts About Marijuana (video)

The Facts About Vaping (video)

Young boy lookin through binocularsBaltimore Aquarium – Take a virtual tour of the aquarium’s live exhibits and explore scenes such as Atlantic Coral Reef, Dolphins, Shark Alley and more. – Learn computer science at home with these introductory tutorials and courses for all ages. Includes a live, weekly interactive classroom and challenge to engage students of all abilities, even those without computers.

Data Science Programs – An overview of Virginia Data Science degree programs, including online data science programs. 

Discovery Museum at Home – At-home activities to inspire fun and interactive ways to play, learn and explore.

Environmental Learning Center – Enjoy free virtual workshops that keep you connected to nature. Topics include Earth Issues, Tiny Living, Forest Therapy, and Media Making. 

Master’s in Data Science: Ultimate STEM Guide for Kids – A comprehensive guide for students in elementary school to high school, including 239 cool websites about science, technology, engineering and math.

National Aquarium – Aquatic activities to do at home, plus livestreams providing up-close looks at the Blacktip Reef exhibit, blue blubber jellies, and residents of a Pacific coral reef.

National Building Museum – Discover architecture, design and engineering with hands-on, educational activities for all ages.

National Geographic Museum – View a virtual tour of "Becoming Jane: The Evolution of Dr. Jane Goodall," a story of extraordinary scientific achievement and inspiration.

National Informal STEM Education Network – Exhibits and digital activity kits on earth and space science, life sciences, engineering and technology and more.

Smithsonian Learning Lab – An interactive platform for discovering millions of authentic digital resources, creating content with online tools, and sharing in the Smithsonian’s expansive community of knowledge and learning.

Previous Activities

Exploding Lunch Bag

Paper Plate Greenhouse

Ice Cream in a Bag

Hidden Crayon Message (video) 

Paper Airplane Fun

Save the Earth Poster

Geodesic Dome (video)

Lego Challenge

Paper Plate Marble Run

Cooking: Snickerdoodles (video); download recipe (PDF)

Paper Boat (video)

Instant Magic Slushie

Test the Sharpie

Make Your Own Compass

Living Seed Necklace (video); Living Seed Necklace (instructions)

DIY Body and Lip Scrub (video)

Yummy DNA (video)

DIY Face Mask (video); Instructions (PDF

STEAM Program Presentation

Parachute Making

Robotic Hand

Straw Rollercoaster

Find the Animal

Rosie Riveters: LED Light Art (video)

Bread Breakdown

Pollinator Pool (video)

How Acidic Is Your Soil?

Nature Clean-Up

Surface Water Skimmer

Egg Diffusion

Fountains of Fun

Interview w/ a Police Officer - Youth (video)

Interview w/ a Police Officer - Teens (video)

Anatomy of the Arm

Leak-Proof Bag

Future Cities

Tornado in a Jar

Nature Photography

Smartphone Camera Tips & Tricks (video)

Homemade Butter

Coin Tower

Careers in Filmmaking (video)

Camera Stabilization Techniques (video)

Making Face Shields (video)

Peace Warriors for the Arts (video)

NCS Connects Information for Parents

NCS Parent Connect – Provides in-person services for parents and guardians at a variety of community locations. Assistance includes support related to digital literacy and Internet access; support related to language barriers; and connection to county Health & Human Services resources. These services are offered by appointment only Monday through Friday, 3-8 p.m. Times may vary by location; see full list on the Parent Connect website.

Fairfax County Children, Youth and Families Division – Virtual support for parents through videos, virtual classes, parent groups, a parent support hotline and more.

Fairfax County Public Schools Tips for Online Learning Success – Get set for virtual learning success with tech tips and online learning strategies for students, plus a troubleshooting guide.

Fairfax County Public Schools Parent Resource Center – Attend free parent workshops to learn the latest information to help your child succeed. 

Fairfax County Community Chaplain Corps – Spiritual support by phone is available for adults 18 and over.

Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board – Join weekly virtual concurrent groups for parents and teens. "Heads Up" is for teens ages 14-17 who are working through emotional, mental health or substance use challenges. "Talk It Out" provides support, education and resources to their parents and guardians. These confidential sessions are provided online via Zoom for Telehealth each Thursday from 6-7 p.m. Visit the CSB website to get the access code to join.

Fairfax Virtual Assistant