If your family is like many other families, you all are looking forward to the break that summer tends to offer. The days less filled with must do curriculum, co-ops, projects, and the like. Summer often represents fun in the sunshine. This is true in our home too even though we pretty much homeschool year-round. My daughters look forward to the lighter schedule. Our summer days consist mostly of reading, math, and interested based projects. Math is the only of the three that resembles school to them in the summer even though I try to mix it up and make it more fun.
Why do we do math in the summer?
My daughters aren’t math whizzes. They must learn mathematical methods step by step and continue practicing those methods until the concept has become a part of their knowledge bank. Since they aren’t old enough to work and outside of baking they typically don’t work on projects that require them to use their previous learned skills, I have found it necessary for them to continue practicing math concepts during the summer. Not only have I found it necessary, they have too. They don’t question whether they should work through math in the summer or not because they’ve had plenty of summers when they did not and recognized the impact it had on them when we hit the books full-time again.
How do we work on math in the summer?
There’s more than one way to keep math going when you’re on break. I’ll share with you a few ways we keep math practice in our home.
Online Learning Programs
Online learning programs has been one of the easiest ways for my daughters to keep up with their math skills in the summer. Most programs have lessons that usually do not take more than 30 minutes a session. These short lessons take up such a small amount of time that it doesn’t seem like they’re doing any work in the summer. Most days my daughters do their math first thing in the morning; this leaves them with plenty of time to swim, create, and do whatever else they would like to with their summer break.
Working through Lessons in the Previous Year’s Curriculum
I know that it isn’t always possible to complete an entire curriculum in one school year. This can happen because of life or having to take more time learning about a topic. If your child hasn’t finished the previous year’s math curriculum, then you can work through it during the summer. We continue to work on my daughters’ weakest areas in the summer so that they will not be hindered when we start the new school year. This has worked well for us, and it also encourages them to accept that some learning will take longer and that is okay.
Project Based Learning
Do you have an architect, baker, or seamstress? By allowing your children to work on projects that they love especially ones that have math naturally integrated, you will help your child stay on top of her math skills. My daughters love baking so in the summer they have more opportunities to hang out in the kitchen. Not only are there opportunities to measure, increase, and decrease ingredients, but they also get the chance to practice budgeting and estimation since they are responsible for purchasing their ingredients. This time in the kitchen will implement plenty of math skills that my daughters are working to solidify such as dividing fractions for the oldest and dividing whole numbers for the youngest.
Even though we’ll be heading into summer break soon, our math lessons never go on break. How do your children stay active in math during the summer?
Latonya Moore is a wife and homeschool mom to two daughters. She shares about homeschooling and encourages women on her blog, Joy in the Ordinary. When she isn’t writing or homeschooling, she’s teaching on Outschool.