Only a month to go until school is out. Students are looking forward to the summer break, and their interest in schoolwork often starts to wane. For students, teachers and parents, the last weeks of school can be exciting and challenging.
“Teachers have completed the strenuous tests and projects and now have a classroom of students more interested in summer than science,” says Melanie Bannister, Director of Sylvan Learning of White Rock. “For parents, the end of one school year signals the impending start of another one.”
So, how do you ensure your child is ready to tackle the next grade?
“The end of the school year is a time to prepare for the transition from one grade to another, but also the transition from in-classroom learning to the continuous learning outside of school,” says Bannister.
At this time of year, Sylvan Learning advises parents to focus on three areas:
- Helping their child make the most of the final weeks of school.
- Knowing what the next grade level will bring.
- Looking for ways to inspire learning during the summer break.
Make the most of the final weeks of school
- You can help your children review by asking them to show you what they’ve learned or working through homework problems together.
- Schedule a last meeting or discussion with your child’s teacher. Identify successes and challenges.
- Help your child stay motivated about school to gain the full benefit of the final days in the classroom by setting up a reward system.
- Have a conversation every day about school.
Know what the next grade level will bring
- Speak to your child’s current teacher or a teacher in the next grade about the upcoming curriculum.
- Ask about new subjects and changes in focus. For example, in 4th grade, students usually begin to “read to learn” rather than “learn to read.” If your 3rd-grade student is struggling with reading, this summer would be an excellent time to focus on improving reading skills.
- If the next year will mean a change in schools — such as entering high school — take advantage of orientation sessions where you and your child can learn more about the new school.
Let your kids be kids
Summer vacation is a great tradition. It’s essential to enjoy the time off.
“You can also learn as you have fun,” says Bannister. “The best learning often occurs when children don’t realize they’re learning.”
Parents can design summer vacation activities that are both fun and educational. For example:
- If you know your child will be studying history next year, visit local historical sites, or borrow historical books and novels from your local library.
- Continue reading throughout the summer-visit a local library where they can help you select books appropriate for your child’s age and interest.
- Plan family activities that are fun, interactive, and educational. To help inspire some ideas, visit http://www.sylvanlearning.com/blog/
- Develop writing skills by writing or emailing pen pals.
- Demonstrate the value of continuous learning to your child by showing how you continually learn — such as regular reading, developing new skills for a job or learning a new hobby or sport.
Sylvan Learning offers personalized learning plans to help keep your child on track this summer.
For more than 40 years, Sylvan has been supporting learning. They have a variety of in-person and live online programs with certified teachers. Your child will stay safe, focused, and excited about learning.