One of the biggest summer challenges parents face is how to make sure their children don’t forget everything they’ve learned during the school year. According to the National Summer Learning Association, most students lose two months of grade level equivalency in math over the summer. It’s not just math, studies have also found students can slip in reading as well. But this can be easily prevented. There are many simple, everyday things you can do to help your children retain knowledge. It doesn’t require summer school, but rather taking everyday activities and looking at them differently. Healthy Kids Today has compiled a list of ways to make sure your children’s brains stay in tip-top shape this summer.
- Help your children develop a green thumb – Plant a garden together over the summer and watch the plants blossom. Gardening is a great way to stay active and stimulate your brain. Teach your children about proper plant nutrition, including how often to water, the types of soil to use and how to prune.
- Volunteer – Have your children become a reading buddy at a local library or volunteer at a soup kitchen for the day. You could even take the family dog to visit patients at an older adult care facility. Doing for others has a positive impact on the “doer” as well as the recipient
- Become a writer – Do your children have a passion for an activity, hobby or subject? Encourage them to write it all down! They can create a fictional story or just document what they love. You can help them create their own blogs using sites like Tumblr and let their creativity go wild.
- Play brain games – Do crossword puzzles, word scrambles or play Sudoku with your kids. These simple games will help with their reading, math and spelling skills. They are fun and great for family time!
- Let your kids be your accountants – The next time you pay your bills, let your kids add them up for you. If you are going on vacation, let them keep track of your receipts so you know how much you are spending. Using math skills in this way will help them retain the information they need for the start of the school year. It can also help them learn to budget.