Last week, we talked a bit about the “summer slide”. Not a summer Olympic sport – but it does sound fun! It isn’t so fun for kids, though, when they head back to school and feel instantly behind!
The “summer slide” is the loss of learning students experience during the long summer break. Often this loss of learning occurs because students don’t practice essential skills.
And this doesn’t just apply to young children! This is true for high schoolers too, so don’t leave them out of the activities!
With school only a few short weeks away, now is the time to schedule some brain workouts! You’ll have Olympians before you know it!
- Cook with your kids. Cooking is a unique activity in that it integrates reading, math, following directions, planning and practicality! If possible, challenge your student to plan a menu for guests, select the ingredients, prepare the meal and serve it to guests. Cooking for others builds lots of skills and gives your student confidence. Two good kid-centered cookbooks are Kids Around the World Cook! The Best Foods and Recipes from Many Lands by Arlette Braman and the Betty Crocker Kids Cookbook.
- You want apps with that. Teachers With Apps is another great resource to help you stop the summer slide. Many students have mobile phones and these learning-centered apps are inexpensive and lots of fun. Two of our favorites include Math Doodles and Stack the States. Math Doodles uses interactive games to get students to practice concepts like number and operations, number sense, angles and rotation, time and clocks, money, problem solving, and mathematical reasoning. With Stack the States, students answer questions about each state correctly and “win” that state and stack their winnings. Stacking is a fun but really challenging feature that keeps the game very engaging. Both under $3. (http://teacherswithapps.com/10-apps-stop-summer-slide/).
- Take a virtual field trip (or a real one). There are a number of great websites that will take your students on awesome field trips when you can’t take them in person. Take a complete tour of the Museum of Natural History in New York City or discover the mysteries of survival in the arctic tundra. There are many good sites for virtual field trips, but I like http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2014/01/20-wonderful-online-museums-and-sites.html. Or schedule a real field trip to some sights in your very own neighborhood! Visiting a local park, museum, historic site, or even the grocery store, can be turned into an awesome learning adventure!
Have some fun with your family, avoid the slide, and Be Wise!