How Teachers & Parents Can Help Students Avoid the Summer Slide
Every teacher knows about the dreaded summer slide. Your students worked hard and made gains all year, but when they return to school in the Fall, it seems as though they have forgotten everything they learned. The fact of the matter is, according to NWEA’s research, students in third through eighth-grade loose between twenty to fifty percent of math and reading gains! While we should let “kids be kids” while they enjoy their summer, it is also essential that we lay the foundation and expectations to incorporate learning activities into our students’ summer fun. Doing so can help prevent the summer slide and make sure students return to school ready to go in the fall.
Families should be encouraged to engage in hands-on, real-life learning activities. Here are some great ideas to share with your families.
1. Read, Read, Read!
This is the most significant activity you can encourage students to do and families to support. Encourage parents to read to kids, kids to read to parents and siblings, and kids to read independently. Tell kids to find fun, new places to enjoy books. Can you find a tree to read under? In the car? While in line at the grocery store?
2. Summer Journal
Encourage kids to journal about their summer adventures. They should write about imaginary games they played, the places they went or wished they could visit, books they read, the games they played, and everything else they can think of.
If you want to give them an extra push, you can provide your students with a summer journal filled with ideas and activities. My Summer Learning Journal is the perfect blend of learning and fun, and it is a great way to keep students engaged in learning activities throughout the summer and give them the a solid start next fall.
Encourage kids to participate in activities that can help them apply concepts to the real world. Here are some great examples!
- Kids can help their parents cook while learning about measurements and mixtures.
- They can create patterns with items found in nature.
- Kids can sort small objects such as cereal, crackers, or stones.
- They can practice measuring objects or even conduct their own Measurement Olympics!
These activities will encourage parents and their children to engage in conversations and activities that integrate learning into their daily lives. Creating a culture for authentic learning, experiences, and conversations is sure to help not only prevent the summer slide but help our students make progress all year.