Explore your city, earn badges, and level up your future. The journey begins at: https://www.chicagosummeroflearning.org//
The proverbial summer activity: camp. But not just any types of camp--we’re talking cool, tech-heavy camps, with names like Galileo Innovation summer camps and Camp EdTech (yes, that’s the real name). Take I2 Camps, hosted in locations from Illinois to Kenya. These camps are one-week hands-on STEM summer camps that let kids get their hands on the same stuff that scientists, astronauts, bioethicists, and entrepreneurs deal with, day in and day out. Run all summer, $750/participant/week.
You can also bring some fun instructional exercises directly to kids. For instance:
Sometimes the best tools in a summer activity kit are a little gamified, a little incentivized… or merely glammed up with the moniker of a “challenge.” A few of our favorites include:
National Summer Learning Day: Friday, June 19th
Summer Learning Day, on Friday, June 19th, is an annual national advocacy day led by the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) to elevate the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy every summer.
Research shows that summers without quality learning opportunities put our nation’s youth at risk for falling behind – year after year – in core subjects like math and reading. The math and reading skills low-income students lose each summer are cumulative and contribute significantly to the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income kids.
Many kinds of high-quality learning opportunities during the summer can make a difference in stemming learning loss and ultimately, closing the country’s achievement gap.
This year for Summer Learning Day, NSLA is asking everyone—programs, families, schools, educators, policymakers, businesses—to make summer a season of learning by pledging to #KeepKidsLearning on our interactive map.
If you are hosting a Summer Learning Day event/program, we encourage you to put it on the map at SummerLearningDayMap.org so that families can find you.
Add Your Event and Take the Pledge!
Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to keep updated on National Summer Learning Day 2015.
Stop The Summer Brain Drain!
Sustaining Student Momentum Over the Summer
by Ann Svensen
Kids Lose One to Three Months of Learning
Did your child's brain shrink last summer? Probably not, but it may have shifted into reverse, according to a study by Dr. Harris Cooper, professor of psychology at the University of Missouri-Columbia. The study found that when students return to school after a long summer vacation, they've lost one to three months worth of learning.
Kids Lose Most in Math
The decline is more detrimental for math than it is for reading. "All students lose math skills," says Cooper. It may be because community and home environments give kids more opportunities to practice reading than math. The study also found that income has an impact on how much a student loses or gains in reading. Middle-class children actually gained in reading over the summer, while lower-income students experienced losses. Cooper attributes this to the enrichment activities that many middle-class kids participate in over the summer, such as camp and trips.
What You Can Do
Your kids don't have to spend the summer stuck in reverse. "Parents can help their kids retain educational skills," says Cooper. He suggests the following five tips to kick off a learning-filled summer.
1. Keep lots of books around and make regular trips to the library. Most libraries schedule special summer events for kids. Sign up your family!
2. Think about what your kids may be learning next year when you plan the family vacation. Talk with teachers to find out what they'll be covering in class. If it's a unit on the civil war for example, you may want to schedule a visit to Gettysburg. If it's geology, visit a national park.
3. Keep math in mind. Since kids lose more math skills than anything else over the summer, try to do some special planning to find math-related activities. For example, if you can't decide whether to sign your child up for "Shakespeare's Theater" or "Math Magic" at the local community center, go with the math.
4. Consider summer school or tutoring. Struggling kids can get a lot of different kinds of help from these programs. Summer school can also enrich and accelerate learning in areas where kids show a special interest.
5. Call the curriculum coordinator in your child's school district, visit the school board office, or contact the schools of education at local colleges and universities to find out what educational programs will be offered in your area over the summer.
Remember to keep it fun! You don't want to sour your kids on learning during the summer break.
Read more on FamilyEducation: http://school.familyeducation.com/summer/cognitive-processes/38453.html#ixzz3buncN3zj
By Ralph Moore
Students on a traditional calendar usually finish the school year on a high note, brimming with knowledge, skills, and confidence. Summer is certainly a time to recharge, doing things with family and friends. Childhood and adolescence are supposed to be fun, and that is what summer vacation is for.
So... how can parents sustain a student's momentum and still honor the promise of summer? Easy! Simply sprinkle in some content and skills review on the rainy days. From math and reading apps that support early learners, to virtual labs in biology and chemistry, SAS Curriculum Pathways includes numerous resources that support instructional enrichment across grade levels and subject areas.
Resources like this example from the Spanish Video Series can be a great way to build and retain learning: Here are some specific suggestions, by subject and level.
Reading and English Language Arts
Read Aloud (ES/MS)
Teach and guide early readers with this free iPad app, which provides access to numerous books with three reading modes: Read to Me, Help Me Read, and Read by Myself.
Punctuation Rules! (ES/MS)
Students identify the most common punctuation marks and their uses and demonstrate an understanding of the basic rules of punctuation.
Audio Tutorials (MS/HS)
SAS Math Stretch app
SAS Flash Cards (ES/MS/HS)
Create, learn, and share flash cards with this innovative tool. You can download and play decks in any subject, create new decks in a variety of question formats, and share your decks with others (for iPhone, iPad, and iTouch).
SAS Math Stretch (ES/MS)
This free app provides a suite of activities to develop elementary math skills and number sense – and now includes fractions and decimals!
Audio Tutorials (MS/HS)
Looking for more? Education writer Larry Ferlazzo recently highlighted numerous summer resources in his New York Times blog—including SAS Curriculum Pathways!