The long summer holidays are just around the corner and students can’t wait to finally get a break from school.
Breaks and a good rest are very important for every student. However, studies show that human brains start losing skills if we don’t use them over a longer period. A systematic review of 39 studies published in 1996 found summer learning loss equalled about one month of classroom learning, and students tended to lose more in math skills compared to, for example, reading skills.
Getting back to school after the summer break can be a shock for students if they discover that they are missing out on things they used to be confident in. Feeling the need to start all over again with a topic can lead to frustration.
School curricula usually set a time after long holidays to repeat and refresh material, but we think that we can spare our children from having to learn things twice.
What adds to this is the fact that the past academic year was special, anyway. Due to prolonged remote schooling, many students missed out on things and fell behind. Even though most international schools in Jakarta were able to provide perfect technical conditions, many students had problems following. The reasons are diverse, like technical issues, lack of in-person interactions, and unfamiliar technology. Zoom meetings with 20+ students can be an overwhelming experience for introverted students. Also, it’s much more difficult to withstand distractions when you sit at home in front of a screen or in a classroom with a teacher observing the class in person.
Join the A for Effort Summer Boost 2021
Online learning has impacted students in different ways. Age and personality both play a huge role. At A for Effort, we have students who are now performing better than pre-pandemic – they seem to have fewer distractions and are very dedicated to their schoolwork. But we have also come across many students who have fallen behind since the start of the pandemic. That’s why we have set up the A for Effort Summer Boost 2021 to support students during the break. We offer private sessions, small group sessions and online sessions so that students can join wherever they are in the world.
We also offer programs to catch up on missed course materials. A for Effort provides Math and Science tutoring for students of all ages as well as specialised lessons for students following IB or AP courses.
Activities to Let your Kid’s Brain Stay Active Over Summer
Of course, you should not bother your children with school topics the whole time during their break. It might be an idea though to add up the relaxation time with some fun activities that help your child to keep alert and use their brain in a fun way. We have put together a list of activities you can do together with your children wherever you spend your holidays:
1. Write Something Every Day
Writing for school might be boring for your kid. However, a personal writing project for the holidays can be fun. Writing a story helps to develop creativity and logical thinking. And who knows, a writing project over the long summer break might develop into a gripping story…
2. Solve a Math Problem Every Day
We don’t want to overdo things, but the recipe, “One Math problem a day keeps failure away”, might be a good one to convince your child to practice a little bit – during every single holiday. A fun way to get children excited for solving Math problems is Math riddles. You will find many examples online suitable for your child’s grade.
3. Have a Personal Holiday Project
For many children and teens, it is helpful to define one holiday project with an aim to finish it before school starts again. This project can be anything your child is interested in; learning skateboarding, making a movie with effects, teaching the dog a special trick. It just has to be something new and something where your child needs to apply creativity and problem-solving. And once your child has mastered this task, he or she will have a successful experience.
4. Stay Physically Active
Many students all over the world missed out on physical exercise during the pandemic with schools and sports clubs closed. Being physically active is not only healthy for the body but also the mind and our brain. The bodies and brains of children and adolescents need a good mixture of physical and mental exercise to develop well. So, especially if your children were restrained from school sports during the last year, offer them possibilities to get active during the summer break. It will support their mental as well as their physical fitness.
A for Effort wishes every family a happy and relaxing summer break!