By Chantale Alvaer, founder of SOSteacher and
A school year is a demanding one, and our youngsters always look forward to June! Especially when the sun and the smell of vacation are in the air. What about what your youngster has learned during this period? Will he or she remember all the notions learned while immersed in their studies? This is a crucial question, as it relates to the memorization process and the activation of learning. In fact, a brain that is stimulated over a continuous period needs to remain active in order to juggle the elements that have taken up residence in its long-term memory, and to consolidate the notions that flow into its working memory – the memory that temporarily retains data while we are busy with another task. Here are a few tips that will make your youngster’s summer a learning ground without him even realizing it!
ENCOURAGE READING, ESPECIALLY AT BEDTIME
As we all know, summertime is not the most stable of schedules – quite the contrary. However, it’s a well-known fact that reading before resting in Morpheus’ arms stimulates the brain positively during the night and helps your youngster assimilate information. It’s still important to read age-appropriate stories, and to take the time needed to do so.
- By looking at the drawings on the cover and reading the title, ask them what they think the story is about;
- Ask your child questions at the end of certain pages to check his or her level of understanding (Who’s doing the action? What’s the weather like? When does it take place? Where are the characters? etc.);
- Put words to the pictures; this enriches his vocabulary;
- Ask them what they think will happen on the next page;
- Imagine the end of the story by making a prediction.
TRADE WORKING TIME FOR FREE TIME OF YOUR OWN CHOOSING
Don’t be shy about becoming a good negotiator: after all, I’m sure your children are too! In exchange for half an hour’s homework, your child can enjoy the same amount of activity time of his or her choice. Isn’t that a good deal? After all, it’s really for his own good that you’re supervising his studies, and seeing his parent attach importance to school will cultivate this value in him. These days, you can buy low-cost digital workbooks (see Génie Publication in our online store) easily over the Internet, without having to run to the stores. These tools are adapted to your child’s level, and above all, they’re fun. You can even download the answers and follow them up yourself, step by step.
USE TUTORING SERVICES
Do you feel that summer should be a homework vacation for you too? Is homework time hard enough throughout the school year? But don’t feel guilty: you’re not the only parent who looks forward to the summer months just to get a break from homework and lessons. Why not enlist the services of a tutor who knows his or her subject, is passionate about his or her work, and is sure to have the time with your child to offer summer courses? Isn’t it a wonderful way to combine business with pleasure? Your child will be able to review the school year that’s just finished, and above all, he’ll be able to come back with a bang when the new school year starts. Just think, an hour or two of summer school a week will be enough to support your child’s learning over the vacation period.
Summer courses aren’t that complicated. Just establish a routine, ideally in the morning, and make it a regular part of your day. Children lose school concepts very quickly. For them, summer represents a lot of time in their young lives. If your youngster regularly struggles with school results that present a number of challenges, summer courses are a highly recommended way to start the new school year without falling too far behind.
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