There are only three little words that can make kids groan and parents jump for joy simultaneously: Back… To… School
Unfortunately my child has always struggled with school. He isn’t one of those kids who is naturally “good at school” and we HAVE to stay engaged with him and his academics to have a successful school year and it has to begin before the first day of school.
The Summer Slump
What is the Summer Slump and what do I need to do?
I do try to prevent the summer slump, but a little back-slidding is inevitable. Between late nights, beach days, summer camps, sleepovers, and everything in between it is hard to keep our kids sharp.
If you haven’t heard of the “summer slump” or “summer slide” before it is a term that refers to a “backslide” in educational performance at the start of the school year caused by a lack of academic engagement over the break.
It is never too late to start gearing their minds up to learn. Even if you only have a few weeks of summer left you can start getting them back into it.
Math – Have your child do 20 minutes a day of basic math for their grade level. Here are some of my favorite math resources:
- App – Khan Academy Kids
- App – Monster Math for Kids
- App – Prodigy Math Game
- App – Math Champions
Reading – Take a trip to the library or download some ebooks. Have your child read for 30 minutes a day. If your child doesn’t like to read check out THIS POST for some tips.
Writing – I like to do a writing exercise before school starts. Writing is definitely one thing that ends up on the back burner in our house because it is hard to find opportunities for writing practice.
A few weeks before school starts have your child write a fun essay. Don’t pressure your child to complete this quickly, allow them to take their time, and give them lots of creative freedom.
Click HERE for step-by-step instructions and worksheets for a simple and fun summer essay project.
Set Your Child Up For Success
Visit the School
If the child has attended the school previously or is a little older then Open House is a perfect time to get your child acquainted with their new teacher.
If this is the child’s first time at the school and they are younger then you may want to visit the school prior to Open House.
Open House is busy and overwhelming especially for the little ones. There will be staff at the school a few weeks before open house and you can go by just to say hello and take a quick look around.
It is important to talk to your child about their expectations of going back to school.
Start by getting a feel for what their current expectations are. How do they feel about going into a new grade? Is she hoping to make new friends? Is she going to try out a new club or extra curricular activity? Is she nervous about the material she will learn or having a new teacher?
Once you have a good idea of your child’s fears and excitements share some personal experiences you had going into that grade. Address all fears and make sure their expectations are realistic.
If we want to get the most out of the upcoming school year we need to do more than strap a backpack on our kid, take an adorable first day pic in the early morning light, and sit happily on the porch with a cup of (still hot) coffee ☕.
Talk to your child about some goals they can set. Maybe your child wants to run for student council or meet all their AR goals or make it on the super reader list. Maybe he wants to make 3 new friends, make the soccer team, or learn a new skill.
There are lots of different goals that your child can make. Try for at least two big goals; one academic and one social or fun.
Print out your Childs goals and put them on the fridge or hang them on his wall as a reminder. It is important to keep these goals in plain view as a motivator as well as a reminder.
Are you gearing up for back-to-school? What are some things you do to get your kids prepared for upcoming school year?