How to Stop Summer Brain Drain

summer vacation activities for students

Summer holidays are something that is eagerly anticipated by all kids and myriad activities and outings are planned. It’s a time to relax and unwind with holidays to the hills or beach, cool drinks and icecreams and unlimited play time. But believe it or not, it comes at a price as statistics show that the brain also takes a break and children tend to lose knowledge and skills they have learnt during school days. Teachers and parents together can take a few steps to ensure that children are not at a disadvantage, thanks to the summer brain drain.

Summer brain drain, otherwise known as summer slide, is literally a case of ‘use it or lose it’ and with no active learning during the summer break, children easily lose a substantial portion of things they learned in school. That by no means should stop a family from forgetting about their hectic schedules or spending quality time together as a few summer vacation activities for students can prevent learning loss.

Also Read: Summer Bucket List For Kids

Summer Brain Drain Statistics

Studies in this field have brought up some rather alarming statistics due to which educationists have come up with summer enrichment and learning programs with great summer break activities for students.

  • Approximately two months of school learning are lost during the summer break.
  • Around 2.6 months of Mathematics learning is lost by students during the summer break.
  • 2 months of reading is lost over the summer vacation.
  • Achievement scores of students decline more as compared to their reading scores during the summer months.
  • Around 6 weeks have to be devoted by the school for students to re-learn previously taught material and make up for summer break learning loss.
  • The higher the grade levels, the more the learning loss.
  • Standardised test scores for students after the summer break are significantly lower than before it.
  • Also Read: Benefits Of Summer Camp

    Ways to Avoid Summer Brain Drain or Summer Slide

    Teachers and parents can reduce summer brain drain significantly with a few simple steps that help them retain what they learnt at school during their summer break so that there is minimal relearning required when school reopens. Just 2 to 3 hours of educational activities per week during the summer break can help prevent summer brain drain. We have listed a few simple and fun summer learning activities that are known to prevent learning loss during the summer break.

    1. Visit a Library
    2. It is easy for children to stop reading once their school closes for the summer. Parents could encourage their kids to join a library and borrow books regularly. They can pick books on different subjects and take the help of teachers to recommend books on all the subjects before the vacation starts. This will keep them reading all summer long. Reading can act as a brain drain antidote, and it does not have to involve much time or effort. Research shows that reading for 10 minutes each day is sufficient for a child’s learning outcomes to be positive. Going to the library, reading a book aloud daily or doing a book report are all interesting ways which make reading part of your child’s summer routine every day.

    3. Practising and Developing Writing and Handwriting Skills
    4. For younger children, just writing a few sentences can do wonders. On the other hand, older children could write in a journal, create a scrapbook or even attempt writing short stories. This not only gets their creative juices flowing, but it’s also great for improving their handwriting.

    5. Playing Games
    6. We are not talking about video and online games here but instead, old-school board games that parents can play with their children. Games like Chess, Monopoly and Scrabble are not only exciting but also improve the retention and analytical skills of kids. Many other board games enhance the mathematical skills of children and keep their brains ticking. Encouraging creative and thoughtful play that is informal in nature has a plethora of emotional, social and developmental benefits. They are also great for preventing summer brain drain. Playing with Legos helps to build fine and gross motor skills while card games are great for honing maths skills and developing logical and strategic thinking.

    7. Short Educational Excursions
    8. Parents and children can together make a list of places that can be visited during the day like museums, planetariums, historical monuments and a whole lot more. Teachers can also help out by telling you what will be taught in class after the school reopens. This not only allows the family to spend an entire day together but is also a fun activity that enhances learning and is a good way to prevent summer brain drain. Educational trips also keep children away from watching television and playing video games. Studies show that taking children to a museum not only improves their knowledge but also does a wonderful job of improving their problem-solving skills and enhancing their creativity. If your routine doesn’t allow you to take these excursions,  there are many virtual tours available that can give your child a realistic experience while also enhancing their knowledge.

    9. Baking or Cooking Activities
    10. Get young children involved in kitchen activities like baking and cooking where they can try out their favourite recipes during the summer break while having loads of fun. Simple things like helping in preparing cake batter or a milkshake while following a recipe can teach them about measurements and fractions. They get first-hand experience of how to relate what they have studied in school with what they are doing in the kitchen.

    11. Learning New Skills
    12. Learning a new skill like playing an instrument, learning a new language, gardening, painting, singing or dancing is a great way to stop the summer brain drain. Parents should try to get their kids enrolled in creative or artistic activities as they will help them discover and hone their talents. New activities are a great way to keep them busy and learn about different things. These activities can be done at leisure without being hassled with a packed schedule.

    Also Read: Summer Vacation Activities For Kids

    Summer breaks are a time for families to bond and do exciting and memorable things together. Following a school routine all year long can be both boring and exhausting. This is what makes the summer break all the more important as one can indulge in activities that are fun and exciting. But one must remember that summer brain drain is a real thing, the effects of which can be reduced by a few meaningful activities that cater to the development needs of one’s child’s mind. The tips and activities we have shared are sure to stop the summer brain drain and ensure that you get the most out of the summer break. For more information and summer vacation activities for students that stop the brain drain, you can touch base with the EuroSchool website and see your child blossom during this fun time.

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