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Summer Learning Loss Statistics (And Tips To Promote Learning All Summer Long)


Summer Learning Loss Statistics

With the final school bell right around the corner, summer learning loss is a worry for many parents and educators. The good news is there are many ways to prevent learning loss over the summer months.

What Is Summer Learning Loss?

Often referred to as summer setback or the summer slide, summer learning loss is when students return to school at a lower academic level than the end of the last school year. This happens when your child doesn’t use or practise the skills he or she learned at school during summer vacation.

The Facts On Summer Learning Loss

• The equivalent of one month of learning is lost after summer vacation
• 2.6 months of math skills are lost over the summer
• 2 months of reading are lost over the summer
• 6 weeks are spent re-learning old material in the fall to make up for summer learning loss

The good news: it only takes 2-3 hours of work per week to prevent learning loss over the summer.

So, what should your child learn over the summer to keep him or her on track? It is a good idea to focus on topics and subjects your child may have struggled with during the school year. Including a variety of activities in your child’s summer learning plan is a great way to help your child stay ahead of the game and strengthen all areas of learning.

Read on to discover how much knowledge your child can lose this summer (and activities that can help reduce summer learning loss).

Which Activities Are Best For Your Summer Learner?

There are many fun yet effective ways to promote learning over the break. Since summer will be here before you know it, it’s a great idea to start planning which activities you’ll use to avoid summer learning loss.

Be a Bookworm

Studies show that reading four-to-five books over the summer has a positive impact that is comparable to summer school enrolment. Summer break allows your child to ditch the assigned reading and choose books that spark interest and excitement, transforming reading from a school assignment to a fun and engaging summer activity.

Including reading in your child’s summer learning plan can help strengthen his or her reading ability and sharpen spelling and grammar skills. Plus, books from different genres can help with other subject areas as well! Use these ideas to make reading an enjoyable pastime for both you and your child.

Ways to incorporate reading into your summer plans:

  • Take a trip to your local library
  • Bring a book with you to the park or the beach
  • Read a chapter in the morning, when your child is used to learning and before other plans cause distraction
  • Create a reward system for finishing books and/or chapters

On average, students lose 2 months of reading skills over the summer. twitter iconTweet This

Play Your Way

Children are at risk of losing more than just academic knowledge during the summer—physical fitness levels can also take a hit. Physical health is very important as it is known to improve academic performance. Encouraging physical activity all summer long will help your child stay in peak mental form. Be sure to take advantage of all the different opportunities to get outside and get active.

Ways to incorporate physical activity into your summer plans:

  • Sign your child up for a team sport
  • Encourage learning a new skill such as swimming
  • Go on walks and explore your city
  • Promote outdoor play

Regular physical activity can lead to increased concentration and improved mathematics and test scores. twitter iconTweet This

Get Techy

The use of technology offers many opportunities to encourage summer learning. Educational games and toys are a valuable way to use technology in the summer months. These activities promote essential skills such as problem-solving and critical thinking.

The great thing about educational apps and games is their ability to span a variety of topics. If your child needs to work on improving math, English, or science, select games that are focused on these subjects.

Ways to incorporate educational technology into your summer plans:

  • Challenge your child to a new high score on an educational app
  • Start a tech project together—such as a toy robotics kit
  • Encourage drawing or creating art on tech devices

Between 65,200 educational apps and various tech-based toys, there is an endless supply of tech projects to encourage summer learning for your child.

Check out these fun and educational apps for your child: Motion Math | Story Time For Kids

Educational apps can help promote your child’s problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
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Be Creative

Research shows creative activities can increase academic and emotional success by improving higher-level thinking and skill development.

Creative activities can directly help with subjects such as English and art. Being creative helps create neural pathways between different parts of the brain—helpful for all areas of learning! Set your child up for success by encouraging creative activities each day this summer.  

Ways to incorporate creative activities into your summer plans:

  • Buy a journal for your child and encourage daily creative writing
  • Find art projects and crafts for your child to try
  • Decorate cookies or cupcakes
  • Buy or print colouring pages

Doing creative activities can help to improve higher-level thinking in the brain. twitter iconTweet This

Get the Whole Family Involved

Involving the whole family can make learning seem less like a chore. It’s also a great way to spend time with your child, encourage positive self-esteem, and make learning fun and stress-free. An added benefit is valuable family bonding time!

Use these ideas to foster learning while spending quality time with your child.

Ways to incorporate educational family activities into your summer plans:

  • Organize family game nights with brain-strengthening games such as Scrabble, Cranium, and card games.
  • Watch educational T.V. shows and documentaries together
  • Find different recipes to try, letting your child find and measure ingredients

Involving the whole family in learning can help increase emotional well-being. twitter iconTweet This

Go Exploring

Taking day trips can be a great way to spend time with your child and encourage learning in a new and exciting way.

Exploring cultural/educational events and places can foster learning in a variety of areas, including history, science, and more. This exploration helps build curiosity in your child and encourages him or her to find and explore new interests.

Ways to incorporate exploring into your summer plans:

  • Visit a museum or science exhibit with hands-on learning for kids
  • Plan a trip to a zoo or an aquarium and encourage your child to read about the different animals and habitats
  • Plan trips to historical landmarks

2-3 hours of educational activity per week is needed to prevent summer learning loss.
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Summer learning loss statistics to help you avoid the summer brain drain

Complete study guide from Oxford Learning

Stay Ahead Of Summer Learning Loss

Summer learning loss is a case of “use it or lose it.” Help prevent learning loss and encourage skill development this summer with some of the above ideas!

Check out our other resources about summer learning loss and activities:

10 Ways To Get Kids Reading Over The Summer & Prevent Summer Reading Loss
13 Fun Summer Learning Activities For Kids Of Every Grade Level
Five Myths About Summer & Learning

Succeeed In Math All Summer Long!

We’ve collected 10 tips that will help your child boost his or her math know-how this summer!

Here's How

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