Remember Summers when you were a kid?
Your bike stood ready in the drive.
The neighborhood pool beckoned each day as the temp climbed higher.
And your math book was safely out of sight.
Mine certainly was. And I paid the price when school started again each September, a state of angst that continued well into Winter. It's hard enough to find a favorite flip flop come Summer's end -- let alone remember how decimal points work.
Fast forward many years, and kids are still falling behind in math and other subjects during long breaks, with some more at risk than others. Giving them every chance to stay on the path to success is critical, maybe now more than ever. Like me, they may not realize for years just how critical.
I got the chance to share this perspective with a 7 year-old who was angry, sad, and even a bit embarrassed at having to attend a summer school session designed to keep her on track. All valid emotions magnified by the fact her twin would be heading to swim lessons at the same time. While I assured her an hour a day for three weeks wasn't the end of her summer fun, her grandpa made a really big deal out of the fact she got to go to the high school years before her sister would. Suddenly, it was cool to do math in June.
That's a lucky 7 year-old. Too many other kids aren't in a school district with such programs available.
As you continue your Summer fun, think about how you can also make the long school break less of a challenge for a child in your life. Find a local program that can help keep kids engaged while school is out. Consider volunteering your time. Or simply give a few kids in your neighborhood a lift to the local library.
It's Summertime. And the learning is easy.