Summer learning loss can be prevented with a few tips

A whole summer away from the classroom may be many kids' dream come true, but some students may fall behind if they're not actively learning.

Keeping up math and reading skills are important, but so is enjoying the summer

Some degree of forgetting typically occurs in the summer, especially in subjects like math or spelling, says educational psychologist Sarah Macoun. (iStock)

A whole summer away from the classroom may be many kids' dream come true, but some students may fall behind if they're not actively learning.

Educational psychologist Sarah Macoun with the University of Victoria says some degree of forgetting typically occurs in the summer, especially in subjects like math or spelling that require procedural or factual knowledge.

"It really depends on a variety of factors, but I think in general it's felt that students probably fall behind approximately a month or so in terms of what they're able to do before school lets out and when school is back in the fall," Macoun told All Points West.

Macoun says some learning loss shouldn't be too worrisome, but for concerned parents, there are some ways to make sure kids keep engaged over the summer.

1. Do a little bit of math:

"We know that practicing math facts — not doing tons of math everyday, but doing a bit here and there — that can be helpful in terms of keeping up some of those skills," Macoun said.

2. Keep reading:

"We know having parents read, and having children read regularly, and having parents read to them in general is just good for kids, period," said Macoun.

"Continuing to do that over the summer is something that is really helpful."

3. Have fun:

"[Kids] are learning specific facts and skills when they're in the classroom, but it's really important that they're applying those to real life situations and that they're having those less-structured experiences," said Macoun.

"I think that's important for developing other skills, developing friendships, learning to engage in leisure activities and making the most out of leisure time."

Listen to the full interview: How to prevent summer learning loss

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