5 Fun Summer Learning Activities
After a busy year of school, study, and homework, kids are buzzing with excitement to have the summer months off for relaxation and play. If you’re a Learning Coach for an online student or a homeschooler, I’m sure you’re looking forward to the time off yourself! But did you know that if you ignore academics entirely over the summer, your child could lose up to two months of hard-earned learning?
According to the National Summer Learning Association, kids who don’t participate in learning activities over the summer are at a disadvantage compared to students who do. In particular, researchers noted that math computation and spelling skills can be lost.
You can help your child avoid academic loss by incorporating reading, math, and other school subjects into the activities you do over the summer. Keep the activities fun and varied, and consider your child’s interests, talents, and hobbies. With a bit of creativity on your part, your child may not even notice he or she is learning! Here are some ideas to get you started.
- Do your children love movies? Select a movie to watch together that’s based on a children’s book, then encourage them to read the book. You might have fun talking about, drawing, and/or writing a sequel to the movie—which is a wonderful way for children to develop their comprehension and creativity skills.
- Are you taking a family trip this summer? Have your child learn to read maps, research the places you will visit, and prepare a list of things to bring along while you’re on the road. Have an older child join in (and practice math skills) by helping you budget for activities along the way.
- Does your student admire certain professional athletes or performing artists? Help your child learn about his or her famous role models by researching online or at the library. Try to find out how these people got to be so good at what they do. Use the information you find to write a biography, create a scrapbook. or design a poster together.
- Are your kids future environmentalists? Help them learn more about conserving our planet’s natural resources by talking to a park ranger or volunteering for a community cleanup. Can you provide a space in the garden or a set of pots where they can grow and learn about various plants? Take a trip to the library or garden center to help them decide on the best plants for your growing conditions. Turn it into a science project by tracking plant growth or testing variables like plant food or watering schedules.
- Do your children love animals? Your future veterinarians may want to learn about animal care and then visit and even volunteer at an animal shelter. Or if wild animals are more their style, help them learn about their favorites online, then plan a trip to your local zoo. Make a video or photo journal of the experience, or work together on a creative story about an animal adventure!
Learning is a lifelong skill and process—enjoy practicing it with your children this summer. If you have some creative and fun ideas of your own, please share them with our online community by commenting below!