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How to Make the Most of Summer

By: National Summer Learning Association
This tip sheet from the Center for Summer Learning shares some things parents can do to keep kids sharp over the summer.

Locate a summer program
There are high-quality summer camps and programs in almost every price range. Camps offered by schools, recreation centers, universities, and community-based organizations often have an educational or enrichment focus.

Visit the library
Find out what interests your child and select books on that subject. Participate in free library summer programs and make time to read every day.

Take educational trips
These can be low-cost visits to parks, museums, zoos and nature centers. When planning vacations, consider those with educational themes.

Practice math daily
Measure items around the house or yard. Track daily temperatures. Add and subtract at the grocery store. Cooking is a chance to learn fractions. Every day experiences can be fun and interesting, while giving kids opportunities to learn the skills they need.

Get outside and play
Limit TV and video game time, just as you do during the school year. Intense physical activity and exercise contribute to healthy development.

Do good deeds
Students learn better and "act out" less when they engage in activities that aid in their social-emotional development, such as community service.

Keep a schedule
It makes sense to continue daily routines during the summer and to continue to provide structure and limits. The key is providing a balance and keeping kids engaged.

Prepare for fall
Find out what your child will be learning during the next school year by talking with teachers at that grade level. Preview concepts and materials over the summer.

The National Center for Summer Learning. (2009). How to Make the Most of Summer: What Parents Can Do to Keep Kids Sharp Over the Summer. Retrieved May 23, 2009, from http://www.summerlearning.org/media/researchandpublications/Parent.Tip.Sheet.BW.pdf.

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