As our boys enter their academic years, summer is certainly a welcome break from the classroom, but it’s also important to avoid that “summer slide” or “brain drain” that can happen over three months. I put together a few fun and engaging activities that keep your kiddos learning without feeling like work!
Ahh summertime. Later nights, lazy mornings and all the summer bucket list items fill our days. Without the school routine for Bryce, he keeps busy each week with playdates, camps, vacations & mini adventures, park & splash pad visits and arts and crafts projects. It’s a really fun time, but there isn’t much academic work going on, as expected.
Bryce’s teachers gave all their students a folder full of worksheets and activities to keep busy with this summer and I had high hopes for starting off each day with a worksheet or two before we had our fun. But in full transparency, that didn’t always happen. As you know, life gets in the way!
Although the break from school is important, I want to make sure Bryce can pick up where he left off when fall rolls around. That said, we’ve incorporated a few things into our weekly routines to keep his brain sharp:
About once a week, we will visit our local library and pick out a fresh batch of books to read together at home. Bryce has some favorite authors and series, so it’s fun hunting for those on the shelves. We signed him up for summer reading challenges at two libraries near us, which has been fun for him to take part in and earn a chance to win fun prizes. Our library also has some youth focused programming that we try to take advantage of too!
Audiobooks & Podcasts
Bryce really enjoys audiobooks, particularly as we are driving anywhere- from long road trips to errands around town. We use OverDrive and the Libby app to check out audiobooks so we don’t have to worry about discs floating around and can virtually check them in and out. We are just starting to listen to podcasts too during “quite time” in the afternoons. They are a fun way to engage in critical thinking, build vocabulary, and foster their love of learning. And since I play them from my phone using the Stitcher app, we can listen wherever we are- from laying outside on a blanket or in the car.
KiwiCo makes a fun box based on your kiddo’s age (0 to 104 as their website says) that features projects and a mini magazine all focused around a theme. We’ve done past boxes on camping, numbers, flight, glowing animals, weather, you name it. We are all excited when a new box arrives on the doorstep each month, and it’s fun to see him learn about a particular STEAM related in a topic hands on way.
The crates $20 and under depending on your plan and make for a great birthday gift if you purchase just one box, or a subscription for Christmas. Use this link to get $10 off your first one!
TinkerActive Math and Science Workbooks
TinkerActive Math and Science Workbooks are a new find for us. Each workbook start with fun, interactive exercises that cover math, science and reading skills and include activity ideas/demonstrations where they can learn through play right at home and apply what they have learned through tinkering, making and engineering projects– right up Bryce’s alley. They are a nice supplement to have for school work, or over summer and are designed for all learners (visual, auditory and kinesthetic). The workbooks cover grades K through 12, and once they complete the workbook, they can retrieve a collectible magnet (like a merit badge) hidden in the back cover! You can get TinkerActive Workbooks wherever books are sold, or on Amazon and retail at $12.99.
Do you have any other ways your kids like to battle brain drain during the summer? Share them in the comments. We’re always looking new ideas!
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Disclosure: I received TinkerActive Workbooks for free from Moms Meet to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate or referral links.