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Summer is here. The days are getting longer and kids are ready for school to end. Summer allows more time for playing outside, running in the sprinklers, and enjoying friends and family.
Summer is a great time for active learning to enhance your child’s studies, to review subjects that were not covered in school or provide instruction in areas that your child needs extra help.
The brain is like a muscle. The more the brain works, the better it will respond and the more it can absorb. Eight weeks of mindless play on Minecraft will not exercise the brain muscle to produce great results during the school year. A summer of active learning will help prepare your child when school starts again in the fall.
5 Activities for Active Summer Learning
Memorize Math Facts
Since most schools no longer teach math facts and math facts are a strong foundation to any learning, memorizing math facts are a must. You can simply review several math fact charts every day (but this is boring), and not always effective.
You can use flash cards, like this set from Spectrum, this set includes all math facts (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division), telling time, and factions.
If your child likes to write their math facts, try a website like www.math-drills.com. They offer a variety of worksheets and drill charts to help your child learn their math facts.
Spelling is another subject that leaves many children challenged all through their school years. Summer is a great time to review phonics or complete a spelling program.
If your child struggles with spelling, I recommend Spelling Power. This spelling program will help your child improve their spelling starting from about 3rd grade through 12th grade all in one book. My son struggles with spelling, I have used this book to supplement his learning during the school year and summer break.
Complete a Reading Challenge
Encourage your child to complete extra reading for fun during summer.
Barnes and Noble offers a reading challenge that when completed your child earns a free book (details here).
Scholastic is challenging children to read as many minutes as possible. Sign-up here.
Create your own summer reading program for your child and offer an incentive for completing the challenge by the end of summer.
Study New Material
Summer is a great time to study a few subjects in-depth. You could study the writing of the Declaration of Independence and reasons for the War for Independence during June (and leading up to the 4th of July).
If your child enjoys science projects, you could complete a science project every few weeks.
For general learning and review, the Core Knowledge Series for Kindergarten through 6th grade provide a foundation of knowledge all children should learn. These books are an overview you could use for basic study or guideline for more in-depth studies.
- What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know (Revised and updated): Preparing Your Child for a Lifetime of Learning (Core Knowledge Series)
- What Your First Grader Needs to Know (Revised and Updated): Fundamentals of a Good First-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series)
- What Your Second Grader Needs to Know (Revised and Updated): Fundamentals of a Good Second-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series)
- What Your Third Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Third-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series)
- What Your Fourth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of A Good Fourth-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series)
- What Your Fifth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Fifth-Grade Education
- What Your Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series)
Visit Local Museums, Zoos, and Parks
Museums, zoos and parks all provide active learning experiences. Children’s museums offer many hands-on activities and science and industry museums are focused toward the child who loves science and math, but benefit all children.
Summer break will be over quickly. Children should have fun but also learn new ideas and subjects during summer.
What studies will you be doing with your children this summer?