Monday, June 1, 2009

Summer Enrichment

Around here we subject our children to something we call "Summer School." We started doing it the summer before our oldest (who is going into 6th grade this year) started kindergarten and we've done it ever since. We just felt it was really important that our kids not loose what they learned during the year over summer break.

In the beginning, we used homemade flashcards and workbook pages. Now, we have combined the benefits of multiple sources, such as:
  • Summer Bridge Books (daily worksheets that last the entire summer) Published by Rainbow Bridge Publishing ~ check,, or your local Barnes & Noble
  • Flashcards (store-bought and homemade)
  • Workbooks (for the grade they've just completed, purchased just about anywhere)
  • The internet: worksheets and websites for learning as well as ideas for activities (see below)
  • Field Trips to local museums, art exhibits, etc.
Some of our favorite websites for kids' learning:
[Have I missed any good ones??]

We spend about 30 minutes a day on "schoolwork." I start them each with Summer Bridge Activities worksheets. When they're done, the younger ones do flashcards, games, and/or reading with me while their older sister reads a book on her own from the suggested books her teacher gave her or from the library's list of recommended titles for her age group.

Summer reading is something I want to be fun. We aim for about 30 minutes of reading each day in addition to our school work. We usually stick to something that is fairly easy to read and is a topic of the child's own choosing. My middle child (who just graduated from Kindergarten) chose a few books at the library that are good ones for me to read to him, and we are continuing to make our way through the McOmber Readers that he reads to me. My youngest (3) and I read picture books together. Sometimes my daughter reads to her brothers, which gets all three kids to do their reading at the same time. :) It just depends on the day.

We are also planning a once-a-week outing to somewhere fun but with a purpose. For instance, my kids love the Bean Museum on BYU campus. It has lots of "stuffed animals" on display. We talk about where the animal lived, what it ate, what kind of noise it made (if applicable), and anything else interesting about it. We are also planning on visiting the Paleontology Museum at BYU and the BYU Art Museum's Walter Wick exhibit.

Here's to a fun summer of learning!!


p.s. And just so you don't think I'm all work and no play, we'll be spending plenty of time at the local playgrounds, running through the backyard sprinklers, and catching a matinee show at the movie house every once in a while. :)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kim! I'm loving all the great tips on your blog. :-)

    As for this post, you should know that you sound like a homeschooler! ;-) (That's a compliment, by the way.) So many moms think that teaching kids at home is hard, but it is so much like your fun summer school-- all year round!

    So if there's any readers out there who've been considering home school, this post is a great example of how fun and effortless it really can be!

    Thanks again for the inspiration!
    ~Mama Rachel (Homeschool Mother for 10 years.)