Summer is here, and it’s time for kids to put on swimsuits and flip-flops and get out there for their three-month recess. However, it’s not just a time to shut off their brains. Recent studies have shown that it is possible for kids to lose reading and math skills if they are not used, even for a few months.
The good news is that keeping your kids’ minds sharp does not necessarily mean summer school or tedious flash-card drills. Summer learning can be fun for both kids and parents alike. Here are ten ideas to get started:
- Reading (of course). Summer is an excellent time to sit under a tree and lose oneself in the power of pages. Most libraries have reading programs and incentives (or you could make some of your own – say, read five books and earn a prize such as going for pizza or renting favorite movies).
- Going to the museum. Southern California is rich in museums, from the Getty Center (Los Angeles) to the Discovery Cube (Santa Ana) to Kidspace (Pasadena) to the Huntington Library (San Marino). Museums can awaken and stimulate interest in art, science, history, zoology, botany, etc. Some museums have free days on certain weekends.
- Our regional, county, state and national parks are terrific places to discover the natural wonders of Southern California. Some parks have guided tours; others have signs which show what flora and fauna to look for.
- Learning apps. Believe it or not, not all screen time is wasted time. You can find a long list of apps which are as educational as they are fun. Some of these contain beloved characters from Sesame Street, Disney, Nickelodeon, etc.
- Summer work, internships, or volunteerism. All of these can help kids learn new skills, get a leg up in college applications, or just do a good deed for other individuals in your community.
- Exploring new places, from different cities in the state or just an area of your own town that you’ve never seen before. You’ll never know what has been hidden in your own “backyard.”
- Learning to cook. Cooking is a practical skill that can improve health in the long run by reducing reliance on junk food and takeout.
- Attending live plays, especially outdoors. Who doesn’t enjoy some Shakespeare in the Park on a balmy summer evening?
- Nothing hones writing skills than writing itself. Your kids could write their own stage plays, or create a blog, or write short stories to share with family and friends.
- Hire a tutor. Many tutors know how to create summer activities that are both educational and enjoyable. One good place to find such tutors is JobQuotes.com. We let our customers rate our professionals, so you have good information to make your choice. Get started today!