Parents across the country have been faced with the reality of school closures interrupting their children’s learning. As a parent reading this, you’re probably thinking you’ve gained a new title of full-time teacher!
However, as we head into the summer months, parents aren’t just worried about the “summer slide” this year, but a major “COVID Slide” when it comes to their child’s education. Considering that many students haven’t been in a typical classroom setting since March, parents are now left wondering if their children will be ready for the new school year in the fall.
Continuing educational activities over the summer months is one way to combat the “COVID Slide” and ensure they are fully prepared for the new school year in September. Here are 5 ways to continue your child’s learning over the summer while keeping it fun:
- Use everyday moments as learning opportunities. Children can work on their math skills while baking or by creating their very own board game. Encouraging a summer reading challenge or playing with educational activity kits are also great ways to combine learning with fun.
- Remember to unplug and limit screen time. There’s no denying there are great learning tools online, but children don’t spend the majority of their classroom time in front of a screen. Online resources offer prepared pencil to paper assignments that can help take the pressure off parents trying to create worksheets for themselves. Many studies show that writing things down helps children remember them, and the act of producing work independently from memory without the prompts provided by a keyboard, forces children to engage with their work more closely. As a result, this helps them to commit their learning to long term memory
- Encouragement is key. Children thrive off encouragement so make sure you celebrate the victories however small or large. This will help to keep your children motivated and foster a love for learning
- Try and create a general daily routine that includes time for learning, 30 minutes to an hour each day will help keep skills fresh in children’s minds. In doing so, your child also knows what to expect for the day and maintains some structure over the summer. This will help them in September as they ease back into their school routine. If you have older children, you can always work together on a schedule, so they feel involved in the process.
- Don’t just teach indoors – as learning can happen outside too! The summer sun and fresh air can help with concentration and open up a new perspective on learning topics. Try writing your math equations on water balloons instead of flashcards or playing word games with chalk on the driveway.
Lisa Kaul has over 27 years experience in education working with Kumon since 1992 where she is currently the Senior Vice President. Kumon can help take the pressure off of parents by providing worksheets, 30-minute assignments for each day covering English and math. To learn more about the Kumon Math and Reading Program, visit KUMON.com