Avoid the Summer Slide

Helping Elementary Kiddos Stay Sharp this Summer
Guest Post by Cassandra Macias, 1st Grade Teacher

Have you noticed the aisles at the stores lately? Back to school items are slowly starting to make their way into storefronts which means one thing – summer is almost over! Although kids love the freedom from summer break, going a lengthy period without school can result in a “summer slide”. When kids experience summer slide – they forget how much they have learned from the previous year and academic skills can decrease. Here are a few ways you can help the kids stay sharp before summer ends (and as a plus, they are fun so they won’t even realize they are learning!)!

Encourage Reading
If you only take one thing from this list – let it be that you encourage the kids to read! Research shows that reading to kids or having them read for themselves improves reading achievement, comprehension, vocabulary, and spelling. Not to mention they are able to develop a love for reading. Take a trip to your local library or discount book store and let the kids pick out a book for themselves this summer!

Use Math Skills
Preventing the summer slide is less about drilling math facts and more about maintaining the skills they have developed. As you’re taking a walk with the kids, practice counting or reciting multiplication facts. Another idea is to create STEM activities such as making slime. Crafts and projects that children enjoy can always be an opportunity to learn.

Encourage Individual Interests
Do the kids love learning about space or cats? The best part about summer is that there are no rules or standards when it comes to learning. Use the last few weeks to dive into the individual interests. To make it even more challenging, encourage they create something without using technology. Some ideas might be to read a book about their topic, write a play, make a comic book, or create a model out of play-doh. The opportunities are endless!

Summer is fun and should include rest and relaxation! Keep your kids minds’ sharp these last few weeks and finish your summer with growth!