Transitions are a natural part of life. As we approach the end of our school year the daily routine of going to school will shift into summer vacation time. Summer is a great time to decompress and let the demands of the school year settle, giving children the chance to have unstructured time. Academic skills can be maintained by reading, thinking, and having interesting conversations. It also is a great time to engage children in exploring the world around them. Visiting the library, playing at water parks, and taking early morning walks can give children the time to observe their experiences and put into action all of the communication skills they have developed throughout the school year.
Math can easily be integrated into summer routines as you playfully ask your child to count, to add, or to subtract any combination of objects and things in front of you. Older students are encouraged to reinforce math skills by checking out materials online that deal with place value, fractions and percentages.
Questions for younger children can be framed as “How many forks will we need for dinner? Please set the table?” or “If all of us are going to the water park, how many towels will we need? Please go gather that many towels.”
Early morning is the best time to be outdoors during our hot summers, and it is a great opportunity to sit outside, listen to the birds, watch your pets in the yard, and have that sweet simple time together. Local facilities like Discovery Children’s Museum and Springs Preserve offer good opportunities for outings, and don’t forget that the Las Vegas 51’s play games all summer long.
Our summer break is also a time to slow down our fast pace and take the time for unhurried conversations. A recent NY Times article by Paul Tough (5/22/2016) called To Help Kids Thrive, Coach their Parents states: “The Jamaica experiment helps make the case that if we want to improve children’s opportunities for success, one of the most powerful potential levers for change is not the children themselves, but rather the attitudes, beliefs and behaviors of the adults who surround them. Furthermore, positive influences in children’s early lives can have a profound effect on the development of what are sometimes called non-cognitive skills…a set of emotional and psychological habits and mindsets that enable children to negotiate life effectively inside and outside of school: the ability to understand and follow directions; to focus on a single activity for an extended periods; to interact calmly with other students; to cope with disappointment and persevere through frustration.”
We appreciate the support and dedication that all of our families bring to FMS every day. Together, we create and evolve a community of learners and citizens of the world. Enjoy the summer time!