Are You Set Up for a Summer of Success Yet?
While it's important to allow your children to have fun during the summer, there are a few tips and tricks for parents to encourage their children to engage their minds and combat the "summer slide".
Plant a Garden - A garden is a great way for students to grow their favorite flowers, fruits or vegetables. Gardening teaches your child about the environment and how plants are an essential form of life. If available, parents should see if there are any community gardens. These spots are great places to meet others and learn the importance of a shared community.
Menu Planning – Parents should encourage their children to plan out a meal for the whole family and participate in the step-by-step process. Write out the recipe, help gather or shop for ingredients, and prepare a summer-themed entrée. Preparing the meal will teach important lessons in time management and improve a child’s measuring skills. Additionally, meal planning reinforces the importance of following directions.
Build a Bird Feeder - Children should research different types of birds and what food they enjoy. After deciding what birds to target, a child should work with their parents to build a simple bird feeder and buy the food to go inside. This will be a fun and easy way to get children engaged in learning about nature and building something different that will be of use in their yard.
Explore - Parents should encourage their children to research any local or nearby museums, zoos, botanical gardens, or any destination in your community where they can see and learn about new things. Not only is this a fun way to enjoy one’s surroundings, but taking time to explore will actually promote learning and knowledge about things they might not have known about before.
Learn a new skill or activity - First, children should create a list of activities that they’ve always wanted to try. Activities can include but aren’t limited to: reading an enjoyment novel, starting a lemonade stand, or going to the zoo to learn facts about their favorite animal. Activities like these are great for parents to share an experience that is not only fun but develops valuable skills children will use for the rest of their lives.
Ensure your child has a mentor - The summer is a great time to meet new people and learn from their experience. Having someone around as a positive influence for your student to look up to is so important to their learning abilities, but also to enhance their personal skills. This mentor can be a family member, a friend, or even a tutor. If this mentor can spend a few hours a week and discuss a school subject, or even just be around to spend time with, it can decrease the detriment the summer slide has on their learning abilities.
Frank Milner is the President of Tutor Doctor, a Canadian-based, worldwide, in-home tutoring company catering to children and adults of nearly all ages. Milner is a published author with over a decade of experience in the tutoring industry, he has played an integral role in observing and implementing effective teaching methods and understands the importance of education and keeping students engaged and active in the summer months.