Who We Are

Let Us Introduce Ourselves

Youth Enrichment League – {YEL!} – was founded in 2004 by Chet and Lisa Gunhus. It was founded to bring the highest quality enrichment to schools throughout Minnesota. Through the combined blessings of amazing teachers and delighted community partners, {YEL!} has grown to hundreds of schools in 94 communities in Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

School Packet Metrics by Chet Gunhus

Email us at info@yelkids.com today to start FIVE STAR enrichment in your school.

Why We Do It

Our Mission

• We believe every student has certain gifts they are given and we see enrichment as a channel to nurture those gifts. To that end, our mission is to engage youth to THINK, LEARN and PLAY WELL.

Our Vision

• To provide FIVE STAR youth classes and events to schools throughout North America.

Our Core Values

• Trust: Parents are trusting us with their most prized possessions… their children. Schools are trusting us with their students and their facilities. We operate every day to build trust because we know that trust is built slowly and lost quickly.
• Enthusiasm: Our teachers arrive to schools excited to do the work that has been laid before them.
• Stewardship: The students in our classes are blessings to us. We take care of them, look out for their emotional and physical safety and nurture their growth.
• Service: We are here to serve students, their parents, schools and communities.
• Can-Do Attitude: Our goal is to joyfully rise to any challenge a classroom environment

Where, When, What

• We come right to your school, right at the end of the school day.
• Our teachers either meet the children at the designated classroom or an agreed upon location (cafeteria, for instance), then escort the children to the classroom, gym or sports field.
• Our teachers deliver one hour lessons for 4-12 weeks on the same day at the same school at the same location.
• For instance, Chess may be scheduled on Tuesdays from 3:30-4:30pm starting Oct. 3rd and going through Nov. 21st with no class on Oct. 31st for a total of 7 lessons.


• {YEL!} holds liability insurance and workman’s compensation insurance. Contact us for a certificate of insurance or to be listed as additionally insured.

Get Started


1. Approve {YEL!}

Let us know you are interested in {YEL!} programs at your school.

3. Approve Schedule

Once you’ve received the prospective schedule, simply double check it.

5. Approve Flyer

As our relationship matures, the approval process accelerates.

7. Distribute Flyers

Flyers are distributed via student backpacks.

{YEL!} schedules courses on a quarterly basis (Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer). We will contact you about upcoming quarters before the current session ends.


2. Schedule Classes

{YEL!} references the school calendar to arrange a schedule that works for your school. A proposal is sent for approval.

4. Create Backpack Flyers

For distribution in students’ backpacks.

6. Copy and Mail Flyers

{YEL!} sends the school copies of the flyer. We can also email pdf versions of the flyer or work with PeachJar for electronic distribution. We will also email previous enrollees about upcoming sessions.

8. Open Registration

Registration goes live on our website and parents begin enrolling. Parents receive a confirmation email after registering and a reminder email before class begins.

9. Send Roster

{YEL!} sends the roster two business days before class starts, in the days leading up to class and any updates following the start of the class. Rosters include student name, grade and school teacher.

Y emblem


Once class begins, our instructors arrive 15 minutes before the start of class each week. They will check in at the school office and follow any procedures you have in place.

Follow Through

Our streamlined 2 Question, 10 Second Surveys are sent to each parent at the end of each class. We react in real time to parent concerns and questions. We follow through and make every effort to deliver a FIVE STAR youth enrichment experience.

Proudly Serving



We have nurtured trust, dedicated  with many schools and communities. Please contact us for a complete list of schools we work with.

Dynamic Instructors


Our teachers are kid-friendly, dynamic, engaging and have experience nurturing youth. Many of our teachers are stay at-home moms or dads, college students with experience leading youth classes, at or near retirement professionals who are looking for an opportunity to make a difference.


Coach Murphy has his arm around one of his fencers.THE RIGHT FIT

All teachers must pass a background check before stepping into any {YEL!} class. {YEL!} conducts state and federal background checks, National Sex Offender Registry and a national social security trace. We conduct annual background checks on all veteran instructors. Please contact us for a complete list of disqualifying results.


YEL Robotics teacher helps student with a challenge.

New teachers go through 3-10 hours of training depending on the course. The

training includes: observing veteran {YEL!} teachers in class, orientation into our school, parent and client expectations, and training in the specific course(s) they are scheduled to teach.

YEL chess student prepares to capture the piece from his opponent.


All teachers must pass a background check before stepping into any {YEL!} class. {YEL!} conducts state and federal background checks, National Sex Offender Registry and a national social security trace. We conduct annual background checks on all veteran instructors. Please contact us for a complete list of disqualifying results.

Robust Curriculum

A System That Works

• Teach It!…Every {YEL!} class has a lesson that our instructors deliver to students. The lessons vary from beginning to advanced concepts.
• Practice It!…Whether it is chess, fencing, sports or sewing classes, our students take the concept and practice it to learn it well.
• Play It!…Each class ends with the students playing the sport they are studying (chess is a “sport of the mind”) or applying what they have been taught and practiced to the project (LEGO® and sewing) they are working on. This Play It! component is integral to giving the students a sense of accomplishment and play.

Comprehensive Curriculum

{YEL!} offers dozens of course titles in a myriad of subjects. Our most popular programs tend to
•Chess: The {YEL!} chess curriculum is constructed by Women’s International Master (WIM) and former Russian Champion Serafima Sokolovskaya. We have 60 hours worth of material for beginners through early advanced students. Our materials are formatted for multiple skill levels in the same classroom at the same time.
•Fencing: Hall of Fame Fencing Coach Ro Sobalvarro heads up the curriculum and training for the {YEL!} fencing program. We have had hundreds of students who have been in our program for four or more years. Many of our students have gone on to be part of state championship teams as well as to compete nationally.
•Project Runway: Sewing classes teach young sewers how to use a sewing machine and do hand stitching. This previously lost art has had a resurgence through these classes with nearly 500 sewers signing up each summer.
•STEM classes using LEGO® components: LEGO® Education has come out with a number of fantastic courses. Each class students build a different project then use that project to investigate beginning engineering concepts. For instance, students may build a merry-goround, then adjust the gears to make it go faster or slower. They use that project to calculate gear ratios.
•Sports: Basketball, soccer, flag football, street or floor hockey and more. Each {YEL!} sports class is designed to introduce young athletes to a different sport. We have a unique approach to playing the game for each sport so that all students are included in each team possession. Focus is on basic skill building, teamwork, inclusion and fun!
•PreK: {YEL!} offers PreK LEGO and PreK sports classes (soccer, t-ball and basketball).


Schools Say

“I came to you first because I knew you would deliver educational curriculum and quality teachers.”
– Debbie Slomkowski, Wayzata Community Education

“You are always so easy to work with. I’m looking forward to the upcoming year…”
– Noella Fath Cutter, Elk River Community Education

“Thank you for being such a great company to work with. You and your staff are so responsive and
helpful. I truly appreciate our long term association and look forward to a future of creative classes and
incredible enrollments!”
– Lori Murphy, Edina Community Education

“You are a wonderful staff to work with and we look forward to YEL classes this summer and next year.”
– Patti Anderson, Eden Prairie Community Education

Parents Say{YEL!} Teachers Say
“We love Coach Wilkins and want more classes at RMS.”
– Rochester Montessori Fencing Parent
“Teaching through YEL and working with children is a great learning and life enriching experience for the instructors as well. The management is highly professional, dynamic, and loyal to YEL employees.”
– Fencing Coach
“Gabriel enjoyed this camp very much! He said he learned a lot and it was very helpful. Thank you for your time, patience and commitment for the kids.”
– Urbandale Chess Parent
“Employer management is organized and friendly. Co-workers are helpful, friendly, and well chosen for their ability to assist in a classroom setting.”
– LEGO Instructor
“Miles had a great time and would like to do track and field again.”
– Johnston Track Parent
“The management of this organization is exceptional, providing outstanding support to the teachers. There is tremendous respect between the administration and teachers and a sense of “family” between co-workers. Inspiring young people is the true mission of the Youth Enrichment League and the students are the real winners.”
– Project Runway Teacher
“Our son, Nikhil, loved this class and is interested in continuing fencing.”
– Prior Lake Fencing Parent
“I love teaching the classes here in Red Wing! I really enjoy seeing the kids master skills and complete projects!”
– Chess, LEGO and Sports Coach
“My son loved it! He liked building something different each week.”
– Wayzata LEGO Parent
“The class was great, the instructor was great – my son loves the class!”
– Cologne Academy Sports Parent
“We love the instructors. They are knowledgeable, professional, dedicated, and really seem to love what they are doing.”
– Fencing Parent

Sample Flyers

Want to learn more? Contact {YEL!} today!