Tuesday, June 18, 2013

summer suggestions from a teacher

As a teacher, here are some suggestions you can do to help your children continue learning over the summer, regardless of their age. 
  1. Reading to your children.  Once children learn to read, they can still enjoy listening to stories.  Children almost always enjoy listening to stories even if they do not like reading themselves.  Parents can broaden a child's horizons by reading high quality literature aloud to them.  For younger children, I would start with some classics like Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak and The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.  Books I would recommend for children age seven and older are Charlotte's Web by E.B. White, Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, and Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater.  Children may already be familiar with these stories because of school or movies, but they are worth reading aloud.  For other ideas, I would check this list, look at past posts on my blog, or ask your librarian.
  2. Learning activities.  This covers so many things.  I would start by thinking about your child's age and what they will need to know to be a responsible adult.  That means teaching them how to do certain chores appropriate to their age.  Five year old children can learn to wash dishes.  As children get older, they can learn to cook, mow the lawn, wash the car, and do laundry.  Others things to do to help children learn are going to museums, touring local businesses or factories, growing a garden, doing things for others, and going to state parks.  Most of the time, parents and children are learning together and making memories at the same time.  You could also go to free community concerts or check out library books about different types of crafts.
  3. Playing with your children.  If children only spend time with other children or sitting in front of a screen, they are not going to learn social skills that are necessary for life.  Interacting with children while playing builds communication skills and allows children to ask questions.  Playing board games helps children learn how to get along with others, follow rules, and develop problem solving skills.  If you and your child are not fans of board games, play outside.  It could be a structured game like baseball or soccer, or something less structured like biking, Frisbee, or hiking.  Going to the park, the beach, fishing, or boating are also some enjoyable ways to spend time outdoors.    You could also play school, store, restaurant, mail, or house.  Playing is actually a form of learning and can develop a child's cognitive skills.
A balance of reading, learning, and playing with your children will make some good memories for you both while helping them develop their minds.


Anonymous said...

Good reminders. We're doing pretty well at reading and playing. I guess the weak link for us this summer so far has been learning activities. We've still got some to fit them in, though.

Sharon Dawn said...

These are excellent ideas! Thanks for sharing them!