Now that school is out for the summer, it’s time to kick back and relax! Not so fast, though. Studies have shown that teachers spend the first month of the new school year reviewing material and getting students back on track. You don’t want your child to be one of the many falling behind?
OCVS asks you to try out these tips to keep their minds fresh and alert during summer vacation so they can get a jump on their studies in the Fall.
What’s the plan? Make up a family calendar, decorate it, and fill it in with fun activities. Hopefully it will look a lot less busy than the school-year calendar. Have them chime in with outings they are looking forward to, like vacation, 4th of July, birthdays, etc. When they see how many days they have to enjoy the summer, they can get excited about filling them with stimulating activities.
Road trip, anyone? You have probably seen everything there is to see in your town. Plan a short road trip to a destination an hour or two away. Visit an unusual landmark or try a new lake or beach. Instead of relying on GPS, ask your kids to figure out different routes on a map. Don’t be afraid to get lost. Some of the best sights are found off the beaten path. Ask them to point out signs along the way and play the License Plate game instead of watching a DVD or playing on a tablet in the backseat.
What’s cooking? A great exercise to involve all the senses is to get the whole family involved with cooking a great healthy meal. First, research an interesting recipe. Have the kids help plan out the shopping list and budget. Teach them about nutrition and good eating habits. In the kitchen, they can help measure ingredients and mix things up. A funny chef hat or apron can get them in the mood.
Ready for a culture shock? Field trips aren’t just for the school year. Take your kids to a local museum or plan to travel to a national one. Don’t forget that small museums also have a lot to offer. If your kids think history is boring, consider an art or railroad museum. This is a great idea on a rainy or super-hot day.
Who’s up for a good book? Make trips to the library a weekly affair. In addition to required summer reading, encourage reading for fun. Find out what activities the library has to offer, like clubs for comic book fans or afternoons for crafting. There are tons of free events to take advantage of just at your local public library.
Take the time to enjoy summer, but step up the game a bit. Staying active mentally as well as physically is a great way to beat the summer slide!
Tips provided by Orange County Virtual School (OCVS)