Sustaining School Year Learning During The Summer BreakBrooks
Do you remember the feeling of the last day of school before the sweet release of summer break? No classes for a couple months, lots of play, fun in the sun, all sorts of activities that we aimed our hardest to keep free from the dreaded clutch of academia.
That, of course, seems an exaggeration, but it’s been a long time since summer vacation meant the same for children as it means for adults. For young students, retaining the information learned throughout the school year requires some creative approaches to keeping it fresh while they’re not in daily classes.
Using gaming to influence learning is an effective retaining strategy in a way that encourages participation outside of the traditional academic environment. Elementary Spanish storybook sets, for instance, often come with attached storyline games allowing for electronic interaction. Putting subjects into game form requires a bit of exploration, but options exist that illuminate a whole new path of sustainable learning.
Learning is never limited to certain environments (we just went from games to camps). Camps, whether academic or extracurricular oriented, really help children grow socially, emotionally, and physically. These are facets important to the burgeoning growth of academic and cognitive processes. Because learning and adolescent development is a social practice, environments like summer camps encourage positive learning atmospheres, academically and socially. See what your child loves learning and there is likely a camp program or two tailored for it.
Spanish is the official language of 21 countries around the world, many of which make perfect travel destinations. Cultural immersion and travel are the greatest supplements possible for your child’s Spanish curriculum (really any language curriculum, too). Plus, it’s a vacation destination, language practice is fun and interactive in new places, and it’ll bring memories they’ll hold dear for years to come. When you’re dreading connecting to your child’s elementary Spanish curriculum over the summer, perhaps a trip to a Spanish speaking country could be the ultimate experiential learning vacation. We’d bet on it.
While sustained learning throughout the school year and summer are important for your child, don’t forget that they should be having fun. Go out and play, wander, explore, adventure, travel, and learn. The more their academic studies can be linked to the world they interact with, the more meaningful that learning will be. When learning means something, that’s when it’s truly retained.