Little School of Smith's

It is officially summer break here and we are loving the slower days. We like to take a nice, long break through the summer so we do not homeschool year round. However, we are always constantly learning through my kids interests and adventures. Even though we don’t use our curriculums everyday I like to put together a “summer learning basket” that is full of activities and games to keep concepts and skills fresh all summer.

Check out these summer slide statistics from The Moffatt Girls:

  • Over 2 1/2 months of math skills are lost over summer.
  • 2 months of reading skills are lost over summer.
  • Teachers spend up to 6 weeks reteaching old material.

Spending just 2-3 hours per week during the summer helps avoid these setbacks.

Here is what is in our summer learning basket this year:

  • Explode the Code. My daughter is on Book 1 and we LOVE these as a great phonics and handwriting subelement. Book 1 is all about short vowels and reviewing consonants.
  • I Can Draw books. My kids love to draw and make up their own stories. These are a lot of fun and also something they can do on their own.
  • Tracing/handwriting pages. My son LOVES to trace anything and these from Bitty Beginnings are his favorite! He is especially excited to be learning to write his name. (You can get custom name sets on her site.) I laminate these and pair with a dry erase marker so they can be used over and over. The alphabet is double sided and has lower case letters on the other side.
  • Alphabet Bingo and Sight Words Bingo from Lets Play School. Bingo is such an easy game for any age and I love these to help with letter recognition for my son and practicing sight words with my daughter. They also love to choose their own bingo markers (target erasers for the win!)
  • Summer Review Packets from The Moffatt Girls are so good! She has one for each grade level and they are packed with activities to last you all summer. This is the preK pack that we used last year and only got 1/4 through. It has 83 pages of hands on, engaging, and fun resources. I print out all the pages and put them in a 3 ring binder so we can pull pages out whenever needed. Both of my kids will be able to use it this summer. 👍🏼
  • Workbooks. I love these workbooks from the Dollar store. My kids always choose these to do first because they have their favorite characters on them, they don’t even realize they are learning. There are tons of different ones and they are colorful, short and a great review.
  • Rolling an ending sound games. I found these fun FREE games from themeasuredmom.com. Roll the dice, find the corresponding ending letter and find the picture that ends with that sound. My daughter loves playing these games. You can find 26 different games for teaching short vowel sounds!
  • Ice Cream Cone Learning Set from Bitty Beginnings. This is my favorite for this summer! It has so many different ways to practice a number of skills while matching colored ice cream scoops and cones. Colors, numbers, shapes, upper and lower case letters, beginning sounds, and CVC word matching are all included in this pack!
  • Dot the Rhyme pages. My daughter really likes these and uses a pebble or fun eraser to mark the rhyme for each picture.
  • Lets Play School’s NEW Summer Play and Read Bundle. This pack is HUGE and has so much fun, hands-on phonics activities and games. We already started playing with these Q-tip blending cards, L blends Lily Pad hop game, and S blends Smoothie Blender game.
  • Water balloon fun! I love to use water balloons to practice letter recognition and sight words. Using side walk chalk I will write out letters or words, call it out and have my kids throw a water balloon on the correct one. This is a lot of fun and great for those hot summer days.

Each day (that we don’t have another activity going on) my kids pick 2 activities or games from this basket. If they say they are bored we also go to this basket for something to do.

This basket also helps us to gather together everyday at a specific time (when we usually do schoolwork) so we still stick to our daily routine a bit. We all work better on a routine in my family and it won’t be so hard to get back into the swing of things this coming fall.

Along with this summer learning basket we also play lots of games and read lots of books. Check out our reading basket HERE with ideas for summer reading challenges.

Hope this finds you well. Happy Summer!! ☀️

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