Swimming pools, summer slide
Summer means swimming pools, beaches, and copious amounts of ice cream. School’s out and many children have nearly two months of break. Kids are rejoicing as no school means no homework, and a whole lot of free time. This idle vacation (in terms of learning) results in a sour reality in the ¨summer slide¨, where many students loose much of what they learned in the year during this break. This means playing catch-up in the fall. Aside from a waste of time, the summer slide is costly. According to the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), ¨There are estimates that reteaching forgotten material when students return to school after the summer costs more than $1,500 per student each year¨(Farichild&Boulay, 2002).¨
Summer learning loss is a real problem. Particularly, research has shown that it is easier for children to forget what they learned in math than reading skills during the summer. It’s hard to picture mixing a pool day with long division. Unlike reading, math is often overlooked and not integrated into a family’s routine. Math activities are present outside of the school structure, whether calculating the waiter’s tip, grocery shopping, or working out the measurements while baking. Families must make a conscious effort to integrate math and continuing their child’s learning.
Small tips with big results
Here are some tips to help combat the dreaded math summer slide:
- Family involvement: all for one and one for all. The entire family, parents and siblings, should be included in the plan. This group work can help with motivation down the road.
- Try to piece out the every day math elements in your family’s routine. Convert how many feet the bedroom to the bathroom is in meters. How much does the 8.5 pound watermelon in the supermarket cost at $0.50 per pound? Discover the math hidden in every activity, whether at home, the supermarket, or swimming pool.
- Play a good old game of Monopoly! Family board games can be a great way to keep children’s math skills engaged. Other games like Yahtzee and Qwirkle can help. Now a days, there’s a whole genre of math board games!
These are great points to help avoid the math summer learning slide. However, why not look past simply avoiding, and help your child gain the academic advantage? Implementing Smartick sessions in your child’s daily routine can not only help them keep their math skills sharp, but let them start the new academic year ahead of their peers!
Why not have it all this summer? Children can still enjoy ice pops, swim at the beach, and dominate math.