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Summer learning - keep your child on track for a fun learning summertime!

Posted on Jun 08, 2015 by Maggie LaBarbera

Monday’s Nourishing Thought:  

Summer means sunshine, fun and creative ways to keep learning.

It's summer time and school is out.  Most children are "on a break" from active learning.  But you might be surprised to learn that children who are not continuing some type of learning activities throughout the summer months actually can fall behind academically.

Summer is an important time to keep children's brains challenged and engaged in active learning through safe and positive experiences.

 June 19th is Summer Learning Day. It was instituted to highlight the very importance of keeping children safe and healthy and actively learning throughout summertime.

Did You Know?

  • All young people experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer. Research spanning 100 years shows that students typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of summer vacation than they do on the same tests at the beginning of the summer (White, 1906; Heyns, 1978; Entwisle & Alexander 1992; Cooper, 1996; Downey et al, 2004). 
  • Most students lose about two months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills over the summer months. Low-income students also lose more than two months in reading achievement, despite the fact that their middle-class peers make slight gains (Cooper, 1996). 
  • More than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities. As a result, low-income youth are less likely to graduate from high school or enter college (Alexander et al, 2007). 
  • Children lose more than academic knowledge over the summer. Most children—particularly children at high risk of obesity—gain weight more rapidly when they are out of school during summer break (Von Hippel et al, 2007). 
  • Parents consistently cite summer as the most difficult time to ensure that their children have productive things to do (Duffett et al, 2004).

So this summer, don't just let the kids pass the time mindlessly in front of the tv, or playing video games.  

There are lots of ways for children to continue learning.  Ask them about some of the activities, projects or assignments they did in school and use those as basis to come up with some summer themed activities!  Mix and match activities, some indoors, some outdoors.  Most important, have children help select the activities so they are part of the decision to keep learning fun through summer.





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