April showers bring May flowers, May flowers bring June exams, and June brings SUMMER.
The end of the school year means final tests, assessments, and projects for students of all ages. But while Finals do mean that the school year is winding down, spring is no time for students to slack. The final months of school can be used to boost marks and tackle problem areas, and summer is the perfect time to catch up and get ahead for next year.
All too often students see summer as the time to forget about books, tests, and homework and focus on relaxing and having fun. But forgetting is precisely the problem: students lose learning skills and momentum, and end up needing up to six weeks when school returns in the fall to get caught up to where they previously were the year before. And students who start the year behind have a difficult (if not impossible) time catching back up without extra help.
Think of it this way: professional athletes use the offseason to train and work on skills they want to improve. They continue to work out and practice in order to stay fit and keep their skills sharp for the following season. If athletes didn’t train at all during their time off, they would need many weeks to return to form, and by then, their season could be ruined.
The same goes for students. Two months away from all forms of learning can leave children unprepared to return to school in the fall. Studies show that students taking the same test in June and September score lower after a summer off. We refer to it as “summer brain drain”: two months of very little mental stimulation that leaves students’ brains drained of previous knowledge, skills, and learning habits.
So, what can parents and students do to ensure the summer is as productive as the brain needs it to be? Check these ideas out: