Summer Learning is Fun









Time spent at home, reading aloud, or chatting to parents about books and stories appears to be just as important as participating in summer camps or vacations research shows.  This indicates that as important as the social-emotional advantages and entertainment of the summer camp can be, relaxed family days will also bring important learning opportunities.  Parents can make the most of the summer just by visiting libraries on the weekends, talking about baseball games and favorite movies, discussing family adventures or road trips in the car, and reading and talking about favorite summertime or any time stories.









Many parents have a difficult time relating the terms summer and education.  During the summer months children unfortunately may lose up to 50% of their vocabulary, letter recognition, and math skills they’ve gained throughout the year. Here are a few ways that extracurricular summer activities will be of great value to young children.









Your child will have ample time to solve a challenge-









In the summer, children learn without the sense of stress and anxiety associated with school, because the brain is able to relax, dream, explore and develop. It tends to connect fun and optimistic emotions with education which can help your child to understand a previously challenging idea. So why not mix education with a trip to the beach or a family camping trip. So many skills can continue to develop as your child learns about natural outdoor environments.   For example, you and your child can create ocean and beach art projects, start a seashell collection, explore rock pools, discover shallow water tide pools, or build golden sandcastles.  Camping is another fun experience that has many outdoor challenges that keeps kids brains healthy and leads to increased learning opportunities.









There’s time to get a hold of the basics-









Taking more time over the summer vacation to focus on a specific subject, rather than concentrating on a variety of topics at the very same time can allow your child to have a sense of accomplishment.  It will make them feel more comfortable about reading, math, or science and has the potential to improve academic performance as they return to school.  Focus on a topic or subject such as reading your child’s favorite summertime stories together and continue to expand on the subject area by adding fun and educational activities that are related to the story topics. 









It instills curiosity, creativity, and a desire to learn more-









During the summer, youngsters have enormous leverage over what they want to learn about and how they want to do it. Your child may choose to attend a summer program, play a sport, study music, or enter a creative arts course.  Encourage your child to explore and follow their passion.  This will motivate your child to naturally discover things they are interested in and allow them to interact and communicate with you about their personal interests they are developing on a daily basis.









Your child will be able to set healthy learning habits and routines-









Although summer is an opportunity for long relaxing days and later bedtimes, you should try to keep yourself from tossing out all the routines entirely.  Otherwise, you will have to struggle with your child by the end of the season. Routines are positive and beneficial for children because they give them a sense of order, structure, and stability.  Allow time for learning experiences but keep schedules light and versatile.









It will keep your young child’s mind stimulated and in peak performance-









It is vital that a child keeps his mind going throughout long summer days to protect him or her from suffering cognitive loss and experiencing a failure once school begins again. Evidence has repeatedly shown that children who do not participate in any form of learning practice over the summer continue to miss close to a third of what they have developed during the school season. Educators generally spend four to six weeks re-teaching lessons that pupils have missed during the vacation breaks, and children spend almost the same period of time re-learning these skills.









Image by Pezibear from Pixabay





















































Jo Ann Gramlich is an award-winning author and speech-language pathologist specializing in helping children with communication disorders in Buffalo, New York. She holds a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from SUNY Buffalo and has extensive experience in early intervention, preschool, and school settings. Visit her on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

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