10 Creative Ways to Sidestep the Summer Slide

By: Molly Smith of Educationmom.com

During the summer months when your child is on break from school, s/he will likely spend a lot of time going down slides. One slide that you’ll likely want your child to avoid is the “summer slide”. The summer slide refers to the loss of learning and academic ground that students experience from two months of lazing around. There is nothing wrong with a vacation so long as the brain isn’t on vacation for too long. Here are 10 ways to minimize your child’s summer slide and maybe even learn a thing or two.

10. Read. Read. Read. Enroll in a library summer reading challenge or create your own with incentives.

9. Read some more. If your child is old enough, read a novel together and have your own book club discussions over dessert.

8. Make frequent trips to the library. A child will be more likely to read if s/he finds something interesting to read. What better place than the library.

7. Limit screen time. This generation of kids is often referred to as screenagers because they are just about born with an iPad in hand.

6. When your child is using a screen, make most out of it by limiting the time and focusing on instructional uses. Ie. math apps

5. Bake and/or cook together. This is an easy way to incorporate math. Ask questions about the recipe such as how would I double it or cut it in half. The same goes for arts and crafts. Engage the right brain during the summer, too.

4. Write. Write. Write. If your child is old enough, have him/her keep a journal. Whether electronic (like a blog!) or in an old school paper bound journal, the practice of writing leads to better writing.

3. Write some more. Make a penpal. Send emails or snail mail letters and post cards with cousins and/or friends.

2. Engage the family in science and the environment. Conduct a simple weekly (or bi-weekly) science experiment as a family activity. Check out this great list on Listverse.com.  Equally fun for the outdoorsy types, go on a nature walk.

1. Look for teachable moments. My 5 year old son now knows that often when he asks a question, he will be answered with a question. Whether we are at the grocery store or enjoying the local farmers market, we try to keep everything a fun learning experience.

Happy summer!


About the Author:

Molly Smith has been a mom for 5 years and an educator for nearly 17—5 years as a teacher and 12 as an administrator (principal, vice principal, director) in traditional public and public charter schools in grades K-high school in 3 states. Educationmom.com was launched with the mission of sharing an insider’s view of public education with moms and dads. Visit educationmom.com to ask questions and/or seek answers.
Check out other FAB posts from EducationMom!

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