Memorial Day weekend is upon us – and now it’s official, summertime is knocking on our doors. Kids and teachers are probably thinking alike and if they are old enough (the kids because teachers have a different version), they are singing, “No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks…” Yes – everybody is looking forward to a break. BUT even though there are no more tests, and no more homework, does that mean that we should not keep our kids minds active?
Summer learning loss is defined as loss of knowledge and academic skills. Research shows that children may easily lose one month of grade level equivalency during the summer. The operative word here is “may,” not “will.” That loss can be prevented.
Parents are the ultimate teachers, the constant in their child’s life. It’s your job to achieve the balance between vacation and encouraging kids to read or write, or even engage in math activities. Maintaining this balance can be challenging. The questions remains, what to do.
Lately our blog postings have included books that suggest activities that should actively engage your kids in the learning process in a fun way. It’s incredibly important to keep your kids reading, and these books are a good start.
It’s equally important to measure your children’s comprehension of what they’re reading. Dialogue with them is absolutely crucial. Take a look at READS. We call it a homework helper, but our questions, which are aligned with the Core State Standards, were developed not only to check comprehension, but to develop critical thinking skills. Our rewards chart and stickers will certainly bring a smile to the kids face. And READS can also be used with other summertime activities to make them more interesting and, yes, educational.
With the academic year of 2010 – 2011 coming to an end, start planning now for ways to keep the kids busy and have fun while learning during the summer. It will make going back to school in a few months much easier and more rewarding. We promise to keep the ideas coming all throughout the summer!