Avoid the ‘summer slide’

Students spend many hours learning and maintaining academic skills during the school year, often with the help of parents. It is important that students keep practicing these important skills during the summer. The “summer slide” refers to summer learning loss and it is a major concern for parents, students, and educators. Decades of research has shown that nearly all children and young adults experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer months. The loss in learning varies across grade level, subject matter, and family income.

Students who fall behind in the summer have to spend more time at the beginning of the next school year getting caught up. In a survey of 500 teachers conducted by the National Summer Learning Association, two-thirds of responders reported having to spend three to four weeks at the beginning of the school year reviewing material students learned the year before.

Studies have also shown that parents consistently cite summer as the most difficult time to engage their children in productive activities. However, it is possible for learning to continue throughout the summer with the help and support of parents. Many of our teachers sent home ideas, materials, and suggestions to help parents and children reinforce learning over the summer months. The Huber Heights Library also has summer reading initiatives for children of all ages. The “Every Hero Has a Story” program is for Pre-K through sixth grade students and runs from May 20 though Aug. 1. For students in seventh through 12th grade, there is the “Unmask!” program. Both programs reward students for time spent reading. There are also literacy activities at the library throughout the summer. More information can be found at www.DaytonMetoLibrary.org.

We know that children learn best when instruction is continuous. Next week, I will share some educational websites and ideas with parents that can help keep children actively involved with learning during the summer months.

As always, if you have questions about our schools, please contact me at the Administrative Offices (237-6300) or through e-mail at Susan.Gunnell@huberheightscityschools.org.