12 Fun Summer Activities to Promote Learning!

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Summer learning has a huge impact on accelerating your child’s success for the fall. When the last bell rings for children to be out of school, it is a time for sleeping, spending time with family and friends, playing in the water, taking vacation AND LEARNING. Children love to learn. Keeping that spark of interest in mind, make sure to work with your child this summer so that skills and topics are not forgotten.

  1. Talk to your child! In the car, at the mall, while eating, in the grocery store, on vacation—ask questions, learn new words, form new knowledge that builds on existing knowledge.
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2) Take Pictures—Pictures are worth a thousand words. If you go on vacation or even to the park, take pictures. Come home talk about the picture, make up a story, print the pictures and do drawings with them and make books.

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3) Go outside—Work on gross motor skills. Go for a walk, blow bubbles, jump rope, skip, hop, run up a hill, get a box and slide down a hill, climb, go on a nature hunt, talk, cheer, sing. Here are 50 Outdoor Activities for Kids.

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4) Go to Camps (baseball, cheer, basketball, golf, swimming dance, Science, Math, Bible School etc). Any camp that gets your child out and about, conversing with others and trying something new is always the best thing. Summer gives children the time to try new things when the school year is hustle bustle and no time for things.

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5) Go on picnics and swim! Make sure to always have adult supervision around. Counting the flowers, water balloons and canoeing are all added bonuses!

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6) Go to a drive in movie if there is one close. Children may have never heard of an outdoor movie! Take them to do things they don’t know about or have never heard of! This again teaches new skills and vocabulary.

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7) Take time to work on fine motor skills (if age appropriate). Use scissors, glue paper, tear and color.

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8) Cook with children. Teach them about different foods, and how to stir, sift, roll and pound. They will be proud to eat something they have helped with. Many things can be made in baggies.

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9) Opt outside! Take a vacation, go to a cave, a National Park, to a ballgame, a concert, set up a lemonade stand, or simply have a campout in your backyard.

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10) Visit a retirement home/nursing home. There’s nothing better than having the young ones learn from the wise ones! Plus, kids have a special way of brightening up the lives of those around them. It’s a win-win situation!

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11) Plant a garden. Let the children pick what they want to plant and then help clean and cook with the garden food.

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12) Plan a weekly trip to the library where children have their very own library card and check out books and learn to return them on time. This teaches them responsibility, how to organize times and dates, and even communication skills.

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When people think of teaching children they think of sitting down and doing worksheets. But, children are constantly learning new things and learning occurs when we simply talk to children and share stories.  There are times however,  where we do need to sit down and focus on particular skills. At home you can even assess children through authentic assessment by them showing you and telling you what they know through activities you have done. Make sure to research free things to do in your community-– here are some amazing resources to begin with!
120 Free Things to do with Kids this Summer, 101 Things to Do This Summer

References:
Mr. Free Stuff. (2016). 120 Free Things to DO with Kids This Summer. Retrieved from http://www.mrfreestuff.com/120-free-things-to-do-with-kids-this-summer/
Oklahoma Ag In The Classroom. (2016). Food. Retrieved from http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/aitc/lessons/extras/recipes/food.html
Parenting.com. (2016). 101 Things to DO This Summer. Retrieved from
http://www.parenting.com/article/fun-things-to-do-summer
Six Sisters Stuff. (2016). 50 Outdoor Activities To Do with Kids. Retrieved from http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2013/05/50-outdoor-summer-activities-for-kids.html


This guest post was written by Tisha Shipley. Tisha has a doctorate of education in Curriculum and Instruction and has taught multiple grade levels at Moore Public Schools, including pre–K and gifted 3rd–6th graders.

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