You may be aware of the “summer slide.” It is kids sliding backwards in their learning over the summer months. Research indicates that children in low-income households fall behind an average of 2 months in reading over the summer, and differences in children’s summer learning experiences during elementary school years can affect whether they earn a high school diploma or continue on to college.
National PTA and Be A Learning Hero have partnered for the past several years to help bring families the information and resources they need to help their child be successful. As this school year wraps up, they are now highlighting the Summer Stride—five things families can do this summer to fight the summer slide.
- See the big picture. Look at your child’s grades and assessments to identify areas where they are doing well and areas where they are struggling. Learn what was expected of your child for this year and what will be expected next year.
- Have fun! Summer provides some extra hours of daylight and chances to do more as a family. Look for opportunities in your daily routine to provide fun games and learning opportunities.
- Discover your community. Check out free community or library programs that have academic support and activities for kids. Take a short road trip—even just across town by bus or train—to visit a park, zoo, museum, or historical place you’ve never been to before. Talk with your child about what you want to learn during your visit.
- Support life skills. Learning isn’t just reading and math, but also the skills we all need to develop as we grow. Help your child develop a growth mindset, teaching them that trying new things is what helps us grow as a person, that failures are opportunities to learn, and that working to do better the next time will help build their confidence to take on anything.
- Let them see you learn, too! Children learn at least as much from what we do as from what we say, so be a great role model for your child by letting them see you learning and working hard to achieve your goals, especially when it’s tough. Check out a book from the library when they do, and let them see you sitting down to read as well.
Be sure to read the full article at BeALearningHero.org to help your child find their summer stride and fight the summer slide with the resources available there.