It's easy to worry about summer learning loss. You've worked so hard to teach a child his math facts ... and now you're afraid he'll forget them.
I want to encourage you that no learning is ever wasted. When you children make progress, their brains form new connections and they learn the satisfaction of a job well done. Even if they have to relearn something, they'll probably learn it more quickly and deeply the second time.
But of course, we'd prefer that children retain their hard-won skills. Reading skills are particularly vulnerable over the summer. So I want to encourage you that, on average, it only takes six books in a summer to prevent summer reading loss.
The great thing about summer reading is that there really are no strings attached. If they haven't yet, your children might discover that reading is fun. Once they want to read, summer can really take off!
Sonlight student Dustin N reads with his best friend
I encourage you to let your children read what they'd like this summer (within reason). If a reluctant reader becomes fascinated with Calvin and Hobbes, great. If your daughter wants to read thirty books about horses, let her. Or ...
To surprise your kids with particularly good picks, check out Sonlight's Summer Reading packages. Each year, my daughter Jonelle and I create packages of fun books that will captivate and inspire. You won't find any of these books in your Sonlight curriculum packages, so don't worry about having already read them with Sonlight. Your kids won't think they're doing "school."
For even more summer ideas, check out these Sonlight blog posts:
- Find inspiration with my six tips to encourage summer reading.
- Browse these summertime boredom busters.
- See Luke's list of six things to try this summer.
And wherever this summer takes you, I wish you happy reading along the way!
P.S. For a fun way to keep kids thinking about math this summer, check out the MathTacular videos. I am biased (my two sons helped create the series) ... but I think they're a blast!