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As a teacher of six years, I know how important it is for students to continue to learn during the summer. I know some parents want to just let their children have a great summer – play in the pool, run outside, play video games, whatever they want to do! But as a teacher, I am asking you to help your kids and keep them learning over the summer. Every year, I have students who dropped an entire grade level, or more, over the summer and I spend the entire school year getting them back to where they were. Help out your child’s teachers and keep their brains working! So here are 5 summer tips from a teacher to get you started.
1. Read every day
Read to your child, have them read to you, or have them read on their own for at least 15 minutes every day (depending on their age and reading ability).
2. Practice math every day
Depending on your child’s age, have them practice some kind of math at least a few times a week. It may be practicing addition and subtraction facts, doing a couple multiplication problems, or doing something with fractions. There are lots of great resource books like the Summer Bridge Reading Books that are fun and engaging.
3. Turn everyday things into a learning experience
Take your kids to the grocery store. Talk about the coins you use when you pay, talk about your budget and how much you can spend (do you have the money to get the ice cream they want?), how much more a certain brand is than another. Whatever you’re doing, help your child learn something or use their brain!
4. Take summer adventures
There is so much learning to be done outside the regular subjects! Take your child on adventures, get them out into nature, learn about new animals, whatever you can where you live!
5. They’re never too young to learn!
I was at a yard sale this weekend with my mom and she bought some lemonade. It was 25 cents, she paid 30, and said I don’t need change. My mom mentioned to the grandmother who was standing there with the girl that it would be a great learning experience for her. The grandmother just responded with “Oh, she’s too young to learn that; she’s just going into kindergarten.” No, there is no need to teach your infant about money, but don’t assume that your child is too young to learn certain things. We taught our one year old about coins because she saw them. They earlier children are learning about things, the better because that just means they get more exposure to it.
Whether your child is going into kindergarten or 12th grade, or even a two year old, have the expectation that they do some learning every day, or almost every day. Don’t let them fall into the summer slump that is so common. Help them succeed in school so they can have a great future!