Glide through Summer Slide

With the right resources, summer learning loss can turn into growth.

May 2017, Volume, Issue 9

As the school year is winding down, principals are working in overdrive to finish the year strong. Students are excited because there’s often one thing on their minds: summer. Parents and schools, however, should be proactive in helping students continue to learn during the summer months to avoid the “summer slide.”

Summer learning loss has a serious impact in a student’s ability to succeed academically when they return to school in the fall. Research from ThinkStretch, a learning program to combat summer learning loss, says most students lose about two months of grade-level equivalency in reading and mathematical computation skills over the summer. By the fifth grade, students can lose nearly 18 months of learning due to summer learning loss.

With the right mindset and resources, however, summer learning loss can turn into growth. Here are resources families and schools can use to keep learning alive in the summer months.

For Families

  • Exercising Kids’ Minds During the Summer

There are numerous ways families can incorporate learning into their child’s everyday activities over the break. Distribute this issue of Report to Parents to families to give them simple ideas to help their child grow during the summer.
English Version | Spanish Version

  • The Rewards of Reading

Giving students a summer reading list is only half the battle. It’s just as important to let families know how much reading at home matters. Give this handout to parents to help them assist their child’s reading over the break.
English Version | Spanish Version

  • Reinforce Math Skills With Everyday Activities

Although reading with children is key to improving literacy, it’s easy to forget that practicing math at home can be just as impactful. In fact, summer learning loss is often more prevalent in math than it is in reading. This issue of Report to Parents teaches families fun and creative ways to practice math with their kids.
English Version | Spanish Version

For Staff

Students aren’t the only ones who could use summer more effectively. Principals should keep in touch with staff over the summer to ensure that fall return is as smooth as possible. “6 Tips to Engage Your Staff During the Summer” features useful tips for getting the most out of your staff over the summer months. Read the full article here.

Research shows teachers spent nearly four weeks re-teaching the previous year’s material. Summer programs can help students retain knowledge over the summer break. Here are some additional resources on summer learning programs:

  • National Summer Learning Association
    National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) offers expertise and support for programs and communities and advocates for summer learning as a solution for equity and excellence in education.
  • Summer Advantage USA
    Summer Advantage USA provides rigorous academic programming and enrichment activities during the summer months to primary and middle school student, to improve significant academic gains in reading and math.
  • ThinkStretch Program
    ThinkStretch combats the key issues in summer learning loss and learning in general by helping to create a community of learning using a complete learning program.
  • The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
    The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading focuses on an important predictor of school success and high school graduation—grade-level reading by the end of third grade.

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