While many students view summer as a time to forget about school, it remains an important part of their educational journey. If students don’t stay sharp on what they learned over the past year, research and statistics show they can lose up to one month of learning in the short summer vacation period.
But summer break and learning can coexist in a fun, productive manner that keeps kids engaged! Here are five ways to prevent summer learning loss and help your student retain information to help them succeed when the new school year begins.
Most students receive summer work from their teachers, and procrastinating until the last moment can feel overwhelming to both students and parents. Additionally, it is easy for students to forget technical material like mathematics and writing mechanics without routine practice. Help your students schedule regular time throughout the summer to learn and complete work; even just 15-30 minutes a day will allow students to keep their skills sharp and knock out that summer work so they can enjoy their break worry-free.
How can you take this from a good idea to actually happening at home?
Math skills are particularly susceptible to the “summer slide,” so it’s critical that parents help their children build in time to exercise these technical skills regularly. Fortunately, there are many ways beyond the traditional math packet for your child to practice and avoid summer math loss.
While creating an academic project or presentation over the summer may not pique your child’s interest at first, engaging in other activities may stimulate imagination, reawaken latent interests, and ultimately motivate your student to tackle summer work with a renewed sense of creativity.
Whether students are doing artwork, exploring the world around them, or performing something they made, there are an abundance of activities children and parents can do to find inspiration.
Incentivizing your child to read over the summer is an efficient way to prevent education loss in the summer. Your student will likely have required summer reading, but reading for pleasure also has many inherent academic benefits. When selecting books with your students, encourage them to choose works that are germane to their interests and challenging enough to keep their skills fresh.
Keeping students engaged in the practice of writing is one of the most effective ways to keep young brains active. Research shows that writing with a pen and paper activates a part of the brain that allows students to understand concepts and material better. Furthermore, writing mechanics and grammatical concepts are often difficult to retain without practice, so students should frequently practice all forms of writing.
Overall, providing a regular schedule, plenty of opportunities for creativity, and a variety of stimulating learning choices will help prevent summer learning loss, so your child is ready to go back to school in the fall.