For kids, summer is a time for sleeping in, pool parties, backyard barbecues and family vacations. But, it’s also an important time for kids to keep learning and avoid what parents may have heard called the “summer slide,” when kids lose the skills they learned during the school year. Summer learning doesn’t have to mean being chained to a desk. Summer learning is drastically different than learning during the school year it is fun, creative and active. Here are five fun learning activities from American Legend Homes to help maintain academic skills over the summer:
Summer activities poster: Plan your fun summer learning activities by printing out this free poster with 101 ways to keep kids learning over the summer. Print one for each child and check off the activities as they are completed. Activities include writing a movie review, reading to a sibling, making a terrarium, learning to use the washing machine, visiting the zoo, trying yoga, interviewing a family member and tons more!
Make a word jar: Improve vocabulary skills, critical thinking skills and learn new words by creating a word jar with your kids. Mom and dad can fill the jar with new words and their definitions. Each day kids choose one new word to use throughout the day in conversation.
Family Dinner Book Club: This is a fun one! Read a book together as a family and plan a book club meeting at dinner to discuss the book. Come up with questions about the characters in advance to keep the conversation going. Tie your dinner menu to the book by making a meal that was mentioned in the story or cooking a meal common for the book’s region.
Outdoor memory game: Remember the card game Concentration we used to play as kids? This version makes it more fun and active by taking it outside! Get some paper plates and draw items on each plate, making sure that each item is a pair. Spread the plates outside and challenge kids to find the pairs. Each player gets to turn over two plates on their turn. If they are a matching pair, that player wins the pair. If not, they are turned back face down and it becomes the next player’s turn to pick two cards. The game continues until players have picked up all the pairs; the winner is the player with the most pairs.
Find local reading programs: Many local libraries and bookstores have summer reading programs that encourage and reward kids for reading all summer. The Loveland Public Library, which serves our The Enclave at Mariana Butte community, has a great summer reading program starting June 1. The Aurora Public Library, near our Hilltop 55+ at Inspiration community, offers several summer programs that are perfect for visiting grandkids. Try STEAM Tuesdays, for fun activities focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math. If you don’t feel like leaving the house, the Poudre River Public Library, which serves our Kitchel Lake at Serratoga Falls neighbors, offers a phone-a-story where kids can call in and listen to a different story each week! And the Clearview Library District in Windsor, which is close to RainDance, offers a full calendar of story times and active events like library scavenger hunts!
Enjoy your summer but keep everyone learning with these helpful tips! Happy summer from American Legend Homes!