Welcome to Parent Child Education

Come join our community to access the best resources for educating the children in your life.

Member Login

Lost your password?

Let’s Make Summer Learning Fun!

May 10, 2009

After your child has spent the year learning lots of new things and expanding their brains, the last thing you want is for your child to forget what they have learned at school over the summer.  I’m not suggesting that kids need to study every day.  I am suggesting that they need to use the skills over the long summer months in order to retain what they did learn so when September rolls around, they are ready to hit the ground running.  As a teacher it was incredible to see the difference between the students that hadn’t read much or use any math facts or wrote a thing all summer with those that had because the students that hadn’t required a lot more review before they could move on to new concepts.

I’m not saying give them endless worksheets that your child will come to dislike or avoid.  The last thing any parent wants is for their child to associate learning with being bored.  I know parents that would give their children so many worksheets that they hated doing them.  Unfortunately when they returned to school, they didn’t want to do any work to show what they could do.  They never felt they were away from school all summer and saw no reason to work now that they were back.  There are other ways to encourage learning over the summer.

Some things don’t cost a lot of money – just your time.  Enjoying summer with your child is a present you give to them and yourself.  Here is a list of ideas you can use to start thinking of ways to keep your child engaged while learning at their own pace and having fun!

  • Do experiments together – like build a volcano (check out our dinosaur unit to learn how to make one) and watch the chemical reaction.  Your child might want to record the amount of baking soda and vinegar that was used each time and compare it to the differences in “eruptions”. (math, writing) http://www.parentchildeducation.com/units/dinosaur/activities/volcano.php

  • Organize a family or neighborhood field day with the kids selected the goofy activities to do.  Let them come up with the obstacle courses or races.  Making it non-competitive and just for the fun of it. (writing, problem solving)  Here are some websites with lots of goofy fun activities that you’ll have everyone in the family participating.  http://www.education-world.com/a_lesson/03/lp315-01.shtml or http://www.teachnet.com/lesson/health/fieldday051899.html
  • You can suggest that they write down lists of things they are doing or their thoughts and ideas. (writing)
  • If they learned how to do long division, have them calculate something like dividing a garden plot or figuring out something you need split up. (math)
  • Going to the library and participate in a story hour or just let them pick books that capture their interests to take home. (reading, problem solving) For a list of libraries in your area: http://www.publiclibraries.com/
  • Take nature walks – listen to the birds, watch animals in their natural habitat together.  Your child may develop an interest in nature. (science)
  • A trip to the beach and maybe build a sand castle.  When you get back home, you can make one to keep. (problem solving)
  • Cook together – let them measure out ingredients, try new recipes or explore new foods.  (math, reading) For some suggests, check out: http://www.familyfun.go.com/recipes/kids/feature/fam010502_ffteach/famf010502_ffteach.html
  • Do some mental math together like: We have $5. Do we have enough money to buy 2 ice cream comes at the cost of $1.75 each? (math)
  • Start your own family band – using harmonicas, spoons or other found objects.  It could turn into your families version of “Stomp”.  Check out these websites: http://www.harmonica.com/How_to_Play_Harmoncia.html or http:///www.davidholt/music/playspoons.htm or take in a performance of “Stomp” http://www.stomponline.com/tickets_tour.php for a list of their scheduled performances.
  • Your child can send a note to family members or friends telling them what they are doing or inviting them for a play date.
  • Make a garden together.  Let them pick what plants to grow, show them how to plant and weed them, and, of course, watering them.  Check out this website for suggestions of how to approach making a children’s garden. http://www.kidsgardening.org/family.asp
  • Read together cuddled up under a tree.  Reading aloud with your child and sharing an adventure, even if  they are a little older, helps develop their love of reading, enhances their vocabulary and builds a strong shared experience. (reading, problem solving)
  • Hang out together – on the hammock, the back porch or in the sand box. (self-esteem, confidence)
  • Play! – Run through the sprinkler, race around in the dark playing flash light tag, collect fire flies, ride your bikes or lay in the grass and check out the clouds.  Just let time slow down for a while.
  • Explore together.  Let your child determine the direction you take on a path or while driving in a new part of town – it would be an adventure for both of you! (social studies)
  • Learn some new words in another language.  Let your child pick what word or words they would like to learn.  Hello is always fun to be able to say to others in another way.  Hi, ciao, bon jour…(reading)  This website lets you type in a word and they will give the translate and how to pronounce it.  http://www.wordreference.com/ende/
  • Go camping in your backyard and have some s’mores (graham cracker, a square of Hershey chocol
    ate and a toast marshmallow squeezed together and watch the chocolate melt -yum, give me some more)  by a campfire.  You can sing a few campfire songs or just tell stories of you growing up.  Your kids will love it. (math, science)
  • Go to a drive-in theater – complete with popcorn and pj’s. Share a good movie with outside. (social studies, math) For a list of drive-in theaters: http://www.driveintheater.com/drivlist.htm
  • Stargazing can open up a whole new world for your child and they will be thrilled to be able to stay up late!  (math, reading) These websites are helpful in finding: a list of monthly things to see – http:///www.stardate.org/nightsky/ or things to see daily – http://www.earthsky.org/skywatching

Wow – that was fun making the list, but not as much fun as you’re going to have doing it.  Have fun exploring the summer with your children!

If you come up with some new ideas you think others would like, let me know, I would love to hear from you.  Send us your pictures of having fun this summer and we’ll post them here.  Or better yet, have your child tell us what fun things that they liked best this summer and send it to us with a picture of them having a blast and we’ll post the top 10 that capture the child-like wonder of summer on our website.  Either way, pictures or stories with pictures, send them in by September 6, 2009 to contactus@parentchildeducation.com.  It will be a wonderful way to relive summer long after it’s over!

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Leave a Reply

Summer Activities