It’s only the middle of May and we are already hearing from many parents wondering what to do so that the dreaded summer learning loss can be avoided. For our new followers, summer learning loss is defined as loss of knowledge and academic skills that your children experience during summer vacation. Research shows that children may easily lose one month of grade level equivalency during the summer.
The cure for summer learning loss is really not difficult. First and most important remember that YOU are the ultimate teacher! Today’s suggestion is to start asking the kids questions. The trick is to ensure that the responses require more than a one word response. For example, start by making a statement that you are looking forward to summer. Without doubt that will be something the kids can relate to. A typical response might be “me too.” Yes, that’s an answer but it’s not adequate. Encourage your children to give details explaining what they are looking forward to and why. Getting the kids to give detailed answers is a goal that we work toward all year long. For example, with reading, it’s the detailed answered provided by the child that demonstrates whether they comprehend the books that they read.
Ultimately the goal is to guide your children into giving explanations that demonstrate the ability to make connections, and inferences when answering questions. So our suggestion for today is to just talk with the kids, ask questions (READS has 30 of them) and guide them towards giving answers with details. Sounds easy, doesn’t it? Just one more suggestion, some kids may be reluctant, and in that case, you provide (model) an answer. For example, my answer to the question of what I’m looking forward to this summer might be “I can’t wait for our family vacation this summer to Disneyworld”.
As always we look forward to hearing from you about “talking with the kids” goes.