5 Ideas to Prevent Summer Learning Loss During Summer Break

Activities to Keep Learning This Summer

School may be out for the summer, but the learning doesn’t have to stop here! In our June blog post, read about five ways you can help your children keep their reading, writing, and math skills sharp over break to prevent summer learning loss. Keep reading to find out more.

What Is Summer Learning Loss?

Summer learning loss, summer setback, and summer slide all refer to the same phenomenon: children typically lose a significant amount of the skills they have worked hard to master during the previous school year over the summer break. Education researchers have been studying this problem for more than a century, and while you can find in-depth studies and reports about it in academic journals, articles, and online reports, a quick summary of the research indicates that students lose an average of one month’s worth of school year learning during summer vacation. In general, math skills are hit hardest by summer learning loss, followed by reading and writing skills.

Fortunately, parents can step in and help their children retain mastery of important math, reading, and writing skills throughout the summer months. Take a look at the following five ways you can encourage little ones to hang on to the knowledge they worked hard to attain up until this point. A little practice every day will go a long way in preparing students for the school year ahead.

Use Technology to Practice Math Skills

Use Technology to Practice Math Skills

When your kids need a break from the summer sun, encourage them to practice math skills with online learning programs, like I Know It. Digital math games help students retain important skills, like math fact fluency, in an engaging and interactive format. Use I Know It math activities on a personal computer, tablet, or phone, indoors or outdoors, at home or on the go. Even fifteen minutes a day can make a huge difference when it comes to preventing summer learning loss.

Participate in a Summer Reading Challenge

Participate in a Summer Reading Challenge

Reading skills are another area you will want to help children keep up with over summer break, and a summer reading challenge is a great way to do this. Check out your local library’s summer reading program or create one of your own. Create challenging yet realistic reading goals with your kids and incentivize their summer reading challenges with appropriate rewards when milestones are reached. Remember to include books your children are interested in reading and ones that will strengthen their reading abilities.

Keep a Creative Writing Journal

Keep a Creative Writing Journal

Summer break is a memorable time in a child’s life, filled with daily potential for making memories and discovering new things. Encourage your child to record his or her experiences, thoughts, and imaginings in a summer journal. Try creative writing prompts, write letters, cards, and notes, and help kids find time and space to free write in a special notebook or journal.

Focus on S.T.E.A.M. Activities

Focus on S.T.E.A.M. Activities

Your kids don’t need to sit through science and math lectures to keep learning throughout the summer. Keep them busy, entertained, and engaged with educational activities that reinforce science, technology, engineering, art, and math skills. Find a local science or art day camp, tackle a kitchen science experiment, build something outdoors…the possibilities are endless. You can find tons of great ideas for summer S.T.E.A.M. activities online.

Go on Field Trips and Talk About Them Together

Go on Summer Field Trips

Summer is the perfect time to go out and explore as a family. Go to the zoo, a local historical site, a nature preserve, the science museum, or other attractions in your city. Ask your kids open-ended questions to help them process what they are learning on each outing:

  • Tell me about the different habitats you noticed today at the zoo.
  • What was your favorite exhibit at the science museum? Why?
  • What do you think it would have been like to live during the time of the Revolutionary War and be a soldier at a fort like the one we visited?

We hope you and your kids can try out a few of these activities over the summer break and keep their skills sharp and ready for the school year ahead!

Stay ahead of summer learning loss with interactive math and ELA activities on I Know It. Try our educational games with your children this summer and watch their skills expand. Go to iKnowIt.com to browse online educational activities. 

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