If you are worried about how to keep your child learning this summer, take a deep breath. There’s no reason why your child should stop learning just because school is out for the summer. However, before you start to worry about your homeschooling credentials, summer learning doesn’t mean that you have to turn your living room into a classroom. The best type of summer learning typically isn’t found in workbooks or on flashcards. It comes from the experiences you share with your child. This summer, make the most of the additional time you’ll have together. Encourage your child to try new things, visit new places, and expand their interests.
4 WAYS TO KEEP YOUR CHILD LEARNING THIS SUMMER
Your child will be having so much fun they won't even realize that your goal is to keep your child learning this summer. These four ideas are simple, doable, and will make for a memorable summer season as a family.
When school starts back up your child will have plenty of stories to share with their new teacher.
READ, READ, READ
Summer reading may seem like a cliché, but for keeping those literacy skills sharp, there’s nothing better. No matter how old your child is, make sure that they devote plenty of time this summer to reading.
Encourage their interest in reading with frequent library trips, prizes for completing a certain number of books, fun seasonal bookmarks, and reading to each other.
Helping your child fall in love with reading will serve them well. A love of reading helps with the rest of their school years but also for the rest of their lives.
FOCUS ON CREATIVITY AND IMAGINATION
We often associate creativity and imagination with children because kids are naturally inventive. Kids love making up their own stories, characters, and even worlds. Dressing up, playing make-believe, and drawing silly pictures are to be expected from young children.
Yet just like any other skill, creativity needs to be nurtured and encouraged, or it can become rusty. All too often, older children set aside imaginative play and creative interests in favor of trying to act more “grown-up.”
Luckily, the summer months offer the perfect opportunity to rekindle your child’s creativity. When they are outside of the demands of homework and tests they blossom. Kids are removed from the peer pressure to act in a certain way. If you have a budding artist, provide arts and crafts materials and ideas, and let that creativity run wild.
It doesn’t really matter what your child produces, as what’s important is the enjoyment of the creative process. For young writers, you could provide story prompts or ideas or challenge your child to write a sequel to a popular novel.
You can also show your child that creativity does have a place in the “real world” by taking them to museums, concerts, and plays.
MOTIVATE YOUR HIGH SCHOOLER WITH A COLLEGE ROAD TRIP
If you’re struggling to get your high schooler to hit the books and study for the SAT or ACT, there’s no better motivation than taking them on a road trip to check out potential colleges and universities. Visiting college campuses can make your child’s higher education dreams seem a lot more attainable.
It can also help them decide what they value most in a college. They can decide if they value friendly fellow students and approachable professors, a vibrant athletic program, specialized degrees, or unique extracurricular activities.
Supporting your teenager as they explore higher education options is also a great way to enjoy some quality time together before graduation. Make even better use of summer by pointing them in the direction of scholarship opportunities. This will help your family prevent the scramble of funding once school is back in September.
LEARN ABOUT NATURE AND SELF-RELIANCE ON A HIKE
There’s nothing worse than wasting a sunny summer day cooped up inside, in front of a screen. Unfortunately, that’s the default activity for many children and teenagers during the summer months.
Whenever you can, put those devices away and head outside with your children on a hike. Not only is hiking a fantastic way to get fresh air and exercise, but your child will also develop a wide range of valuable skills and knowledge.
Consider borrowing some library books about birdwatching, geology, or plant identification to make the experience more hands-on and educational. Or, you could focus on responsibility and self-reliance by asking your child to pack their own backpack, prepare a healthy snack for the hike, or even take charge of reading the map.
You might also lend them your phone or digital camera to hone their photography skills, in case you come across a fascinating insect or experience a glorious sunset. Not only will your child learn some practical skills, but hiking can also boost their confidence and help familiarize them with the natural world – with no phones, computers, or iPads anywhere in sight!
HOW WILL YOU KEEP YOUR CHILD LEARNING THIS SUMMER?
I have given you some fun, low-cost ideas on how to keep your child learning and engaged this summer.
What are some of your favorite educational summer activities? Comment below and share your ideas!
- 4 Fun Ways to Keep Your Child Learning This Summer - May 18, 2021