Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Fun Summer Learning Tips for Parents

I received this list of summer learning ideas, put together by the teachers at Commonwealth Connections Academy, and thought they were worthy of sharing.  I realize that a lot of my readers are homeschool families, so you’re used to having your kids home with you all day, every day.  Me too.  But there are still times when we’re looking for something fun and different to do – to shake things up a bit.  Some of these ideas sound like fun.  Let me know if you decide to try any of them.

1.            Take a Chance! Monopoly and Monopoly Junior are classic board games that put math skills to the test. Be sure to stop the game as needed to explain and assist with math problems.

2.            Move over Milton Bradley… Invent a Game – Encourage children to get creative and develop their own board game. This activity is an artistic way to boost logic skills. Don’t forget to ask children to write directions – it’s a great way to support reading and writing.

3.            Test your knowledge - Online Trivia Quiz Challenge – Connections Academy’s free online Quiz Bowl Challenge is available to the public and features 20 trivia questions about “fun & games” – board games, playground games, sports, and more. Visit to play.

4.            Chalk it up – Replicate and enlarge a word search outdoors (in your driveway or in your favorite park) using sidewalk chalk. Kids will love the giant scale of their word search and will have fun practicing reading and spelling while searching for words. Be sure to check park rules to make sure that sidewalk chalk is allowed.

5.            Be Wordy – With Scrabble and Scrabble Junior Edition, students can dig deep into their vocabulary for words that will get the highest score—and they won’t even realize that they are practicing spelling at the same time. Try making a rule that words must be three or more letters.

6.            Deal out the Fun – Pyramid solitaire is a great way for students to keep those basic math skills in check. To learn how to play, visit Seems too simple for your child? Try racing the clock! Can your child beat his or her time the second and third time playing? Better yet, let them race you!

7.            Jump on it – Add an educational twist to Hopscotch that will challenge children’s math skills. Instead of drawing the traditional hopscotch board with chalk, replicate a calculator large enough for your child to jump on the buttons. To learn the details of how to play, visit, and search for Do-the-Math Hopscotch.

8.            Game (show) on – Develop your own, modified, version of Jeopardy. Children will enjoy coming up with their own trivia categories and can use their research skills to come up with tricky trivia questions to stump their friends.

9.            Seek, Look, Find – Scavenger hunts are fun for all ages, and adding an educational element is easier than you think. Instead of using a list of objects, give your child clues that will lead to various objects around the backyard, playground or park. (Example: Find an object that might be classified as igneous, sedimentary, or metamorphic.  Answer: rock.)

10.          Read to me – Take turns reading pages, start a chapter book that can be read in installments, and make up your own stories.  Parents and children alike will benefit from this activity and it will encourage a lifelong love of reading.


Nancy said...

thanks for these ideas. I have grandchildren that come over and run out of ideas. These are great ones.

musicalmary said...

These are all great ideas! I especially like the hopscotch math! Looking forward to working with you through TOS Crew. :-)

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