Foothills School Division: Prevent the Summer Slide

Although it’s a time to relax and rejuvenate, it can also be a time of summer slide. Studies show that when away from school, students lose significant math and reading skills over the summer break (up to three months worth, which accumulates year after year) . Though students deserve a holiday, learning should not stop when on vacation.

Throughout the school year students have reflected on how they hope to grow as learners. Many students have indicated that they want to work on developing their English Language Arts skills. Summer is a great time to read for pleasure so your teen may want to sign up for Scholastic’s Summer Reading Challenge or checkout the Sheep River Library’s Summer Reading Club or Teen Zone. There is also a free audiobook site for teens called Sync or free podcasts which might be a nice alternative for long car rides. Another idea, Harvard’s Family Dinner Project promotes “food fun and conversation” and they offer lots of ideas for engaging family fun at home. Our favorites are the Alphabet and  Food Poetry games.

Additionally, many students want to improve their Mathematics skills. Because summer Math loss is also a concern, we hope that parents will consider integrating/practicing math skills over the summer.  Look for opportunities to bring math into daily conversations with simple activities:

  • Kilometers per hour and how long it will take to get somewhere
  • Counting and sorting – count and sort as many things as you can
  • While shopping – which costs less per unit?, how much do we need to buy?
  • Baking and cooking – fractions, reasoning, measuring
  • Birthday parties – if we add two more children, how many will we have in total?
  • I see two deer on the right and four deer on the left side of the road, how many deer in total?
  • Play board games that use money or dice or cards
  • Do puzzles
  • Plan a garden or paint a room

There are also several math appsmath puzzles/challengesetc, for children who would like to increase their mathematical confidence.

Have a wonderful, relaxing summer break. Be sure to read fun and interesting things everyday!