Beat Summer Slide!
“Summer slide” is the tendency for students to lose some of the achievement gains they made during the previous school year. Below, I'm going to supply some advice along with resources and research for keeping summer slide at bay!
1. Let them read what they want to.
Students won’t benefit as much from summer reading if they don’t like it. Nearly 60 percent of children ages 6 to 17 say they love or like reading books for fun a lot, and 52 percent think it’s extremely or very important, according to the Scholastic Kids & Family Reading Report. Also, local public libraries often offer summer reading programs that encourage kids, teens, and often adults to read over the summer. Educational, fun enrichment activities throughout the summer are an important feature of these types of programs—and they’re free. Contact your nearest public library to find out more about its summer program and explore how your school might promote it to your students, and how you might work with them!
2. Make time for smart play.
Games and puzzles are a great way for kids to brush up on the basics while having fun at the same time. Whether it’s a game geared specifically toward teaching kids reading skills, like Education.com.
3. Get out of the house.
Experts have found that experiencing new things stimulates the brain and promotes learning. Visiting a history museum or a science museum, or even simply reading together in the library or in the park can help your child get more excited about reading and learning.
4. Use your imagination.
Kids who use their imagination are also expanding their vocabularies and experimenting with new concepts. Even though it may not seem like they’re directly “learning” when they’re doing fun experiments like the ones on ScienceFun.org complex chain reactions with educational LEGO sets they’re still honing skills and developing new ones. You could even play "theater", one of my favorite things as a kid, and put on a show inspired by all of those books you’re reading together.