School’s out for the summer! Who’s excited? I know I am! Especially after the last wonky couple of months, and the significant chances that we have had thrown into our laps whether we wanted it or not – now we can have a well deserved break. However, there is something that all parents need to be aware of – the “Summer Slide”. The summer slide is what teachers call the “loss of knowledge” that typically happens over the summer. Children who do no school work (even just reading) for the summer months are most prone to falling backwards in their learning, and consequently have to work harder in the first couple of months to regain what they learned the previous year as well as meet the learning expectations for the new grade level.
Now I’m not saying to go and buy a grade appropriate workbook, and your child’s new teachers are well aware of the situation from this past school year. There are some quick and easy things that you can do on your own to beat the summer slide.
10 Tips to Beat the Summer Slide
- Spend 20 minute a day reading. This can be done many ways: have them read to you, you read to them, use the 20 minutes as a “quiet time” in the afternoon … you decide.
- Grab some cook books and spend time cooking together. Not only will your child be working on their reading skills, but they’re also getting in some math and science.
- Take a trip to your local library and find a different kind of book then what you traditionally enjoy – picture books, chapter books, magazines, graphic novels, etc.
- Listen to audio books on your car trips. Not only does this help develop your child’s vocabulary, but they are developing comprehension and fluency skills as well.
- Spend those rainy days reviewing math concepts they’ve learned over the last year with some fun hands-on activities.
- Engage in meaningful conversation about what’s going on in your home, community, and the world. Not only are you developing vocabulary but you are encouraging them to get involved with the world in which they engage with on a daily basis.
- Pick up a how-to book and learn a new hobby. You never know, it could be really fun (or a total flop).
- Enroll in a science or STEM camp to challenge your mind and learn new things.
- Play board games as a family.
- There are some great educational apps and websites out there for when your child needs/wants some screen time.