Summer MATH for Students Entering Grades 1-8
Parents and teachers often worry about the perils of “summer slump.” Students spend 10 weeks away from school over the summer and then come back in September seeming behind where they left off in June. To try and combat this, St. Louise School expects students to do some “homework” over the summer, to keep children out of a slump in math and reading so too much time doesn’t have to be spent on review in the fall. Between swimming lessons, select-sports tournaments, and family trips, usually parents can still manage to work in reading and story time into their children’s summer schedules, but it’s rare to see math worked into the schedule. Various studies show during their summer vacation, kids can lose over two months of math skills they learned in the just-completed school year! Knowing this, here are our recommendations for summer math for your children to they don’t lose too much learning…
! Complete free online math lessons on the Khan Academy website, preferably no less than every-other-day. Khan offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard that empower learners to study math at their own pace. Khan is basically a series of YouTube-type videos on every math concept you can imagine, with practice sets for your children to complete. If your child has not been on the Khan Academy site before, follow these steps:
- Enter your email and password at www.khanacademy.org;
- Follow the directions for sign up;
- A separate email address will need to be used for each child in your family;
- Choose the grade level of math your child has been working on for this current school year (or go higher if able);
- Click on that grade level’s “Mission” and start learning!
! Complete the math packets your teacher sends home in June and/or complete the unfinished math workbook pages your teacher sends home at the end of the school year. Your child’s current teacher might be putting together a summer packet of math problems to send home in June, or might be sending home the unfinished pages from your child’s consumable math book. If your child’s teacher goes to the trouble of sending a packet or book home, please have your child complete this over the summer. But don’t allow your child to finish all the pages in the packet/book the first week of vacation or procrastinate and wait until the last week in August to work on them. Spread out the work throughout June/July/August, making it a comprehensive summer of refresher-learning - just as someone training for a race would run a few miles each day, and not just sprint all the miles on only the first day or last day of training.
! Upcoming 7th & 8th graders can complete the gr. 6-8 online books, which will be accessible for summer practice.
! Purchase a math workbook and have our child complete one workbook page every day or every-other-day.
- One publisher many St. Louise parents have used before are the SummerSkills books: http://www.summerskills.com/books/summer-math-skills-sharpener-1. Purchase the grade level that your child is completing now. These SummerSkills workbook pages take about 20 minutes each, and answer keys or solution pages are included.
- You can also thumb through math workbooks yourself at the Lakeshore Learning Store at 11027 N.E. 4th St., near downtown Bellevue, and find a book that you and your child like.
You might want to make your child’s daily and/or weekly minutes of math be a “carrot” used each of the 10 weeks of summer vacation. In other words, you tell your child on Monday morning that he/she can join the family at the beach Wednesday afternoon provided 20-30 minutes of math work on Khan Academy or one math workbook page is completed before then. On Wednesday night, you can then set up a similar “carrot” for math work to be completed before Friday’s next fun outing.
Click on the READING and KEYBOARDING links on the upper right column to find out about summer work in these two areas.