Summer is almost here and that means your child’s daily routines will be changing. However, two months without classes does not mean that learning should stop.
As we’ve previously discussed, your child can lose as much as two to three months of math and reading skills during the summer. Keeping the brain active year-round means that your child is constantly learning and building skill sets. Education can easily be incorporated within fun, summer activities. Doing this will prevent the learning loss that many students experience during this blissful break from school.
Continue reading to discover simple ways to prevent learning loss.
Spending just two to three hours per week engaging in educational activities can keep your child on track for the approaching school year. Break down the two to three hours into only 30 to 40 minutes per day, Monday through Friday. This reasonable amount of time is a proactive measure to prevent your child from being academically set back when returning to classes in the fall.
Those 30 to 40 minutes of learning can seamlessly be woven into playtime and everyday happenings.
• Your son can read outside and then act out
scenes from a story.
• Your daughter can help you prepare dinner by reading recipe directions and measuring ingredients.
• Your learner can research their favorite animal and build a diorama of the animal’s habitat.
• Your child can take a nature walk and identify various plant life.
2. Help Struggling Learners
If your child is struggling with specific content, such as reading or math, it is necessary to carve out time for traditional practice. In many instances, a few minutes each day of focusing on the troublesome content is all that is needed.
For a young child who is a struggling reader, it is beneficial to have a parent read alongside him or her. This provides opportunities for parents to properly pronounce words and for the child to ask questions.
Also, encouraging your child to self-select books can increase the excitement to read. A realistic starting point is to read for 20 minutes every day. The 20 minutes can grow into 30 minutes or more when your child is invested in the books. For extra encouragement, download Eye Level’s Reading Colors My World reading tracker and color in the chart every day as you read. (Don’t forget to check back in July for our summer reading event!)
When math is the troublesome area, your child will benefit from solving problems every day. Math exercises can be found in textbooks, workbooks, and on digital platforms. Free worksheets can also be downloaded from Eye Level.
Just three or four problems per day can introduce strategies for solving mathematical equations. It will also help build the confidence needed to approach more complex math topics.
Other interactive activities can be incorporated to keep math skills strong. For example, your child can measure the height of objects around the house, track the daily temperature to determine the average for the week, and solve for the tip needed on a bill.
Even if conventional practice is needed, be sure there is time for unstructured, kinesthetic play. Movement keeps the body physically active and the brain sharp. If your child is playing soccer, he is thinking about proper technique to pass the ball. When your child is playing hopscotch, she is focusing on the momentum needed to hop from one square to another.
3. Embrace Creativity and Interests
Creative outlets do wonders to assist in growth of knowledge and self-esteem. While engaging in creative activities, your child is consciously making decisions.
Picture your daughter battling an imaginary dragon to find hidden treasure – encourage her. She will strategize how to outwit the clever, though fictional, creature.
Envision your son composing a song and performing it for your family – support him. He will improve writing skills, plus he’ll develop confidence to audition for the school musical.
Whether the result of a creative endeavor is triumph in a fictional scenario or progress in overcoming a personal obstacle, your child will experience growth of knowledge and self-esteem from their accomplishment. To expand upon creativity, take advantage of additional time in the summer to explore topics of interest to your child.
• If your son enjoys art and hands-on
projects, visit a craft fair.
• If your daughter loves to be immersed in songs, attend a local music festival.
• If your child is captivated by inventions and research, take a trip to a science museum.
• If your learner is fascinated by history, tour a city filled with historical sites.
For even more creative summer learning ideas check out our 10 Ways to Promote Summer Learning article.
4. Enroll in a Learning Program
A learning center can provide structure and guidance for your child that otherwise might be lacking during the summer. Support from instructors and targeted learning materials ensure your child stays engaged and on track with their education. At Eye Level Learning Centers, each child receives a personalized starting point and progress plan. Students work one-on-one with their instructor to achieve goals and master concepts.
Search for learning centers in your area that offer an individualized approach and have summer hours that work for your family. Click here to find an Eye Level near you.
Preventing learning loss in the summer is vital to your child’s academic progress, and it takes minimal effort to keep your son or daughter learning.
Whether there is enhancement of skills through exercises in books and worksheets, involvement in everyday activities like reading and counting, or engagement in free play, learning will occur during the summer, and your child will be on the path to success.