Why Summer Homework? Parent education talk at Inly presents a compelling case

Summer is right around the corner. Our family can feel it. After a busy year packed with school, homework, music lessons, sports, and never ending trips to the hockey rink, we are ready for a break. I can already hear the collective sigh we will make on the last day of school when we can finally drop into the hammock together, eat popsicles endlessly, and do nothing else.

Or will we this summer? After attending Tuesday’s Parent Insight Event, “Why Summer Work?” I think our family might be doing things differently this year.

Some interesting facts on reading and academic skills

Did you know that on average, all students regardless of socio-economic status, lose approximately 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation over the summer months?

… that students who read at least six books during the summer maintain or improve their reading skills, while kids who don’t read can see their skills slip by as much as an entire grade level?

… or that students who consistently make time during each of the summer weeks to focus on learning show greater gains come fall than those who save everything to the last week of summer or do nothing at all?

These facts, presented by Julie Kelly-Detwiler and Shelley Sommer, were news to me. Fortunately, Inly has a plan to prevent students’ academic skills from sliding backwards during the summer months.

Reading, writing, math and… PLAY!

As part of Tuesday’s informal conversation, we learned about the importance of summer work and Inly’s plan for reading and projects for each of the different grade levels.  While summer time should be about play, it can also be a time of continuous learning.  As Julie explained, children need to exercise their reading, writing, and math muscles over summer break. At the upcoming parent/teacher conferences, teachers will present parents with Inly’s suggestions for age-appropriate summer work. Additional information about reading, writing, and math activities will also be posted on the Inly School website.

As Julie pointed out, we are our children’s first and best teachers, and teachable moments are happening all the time. Our children will do what they see us modeling for them. So read together, journal together, tell stories together, and laugh together. Find math opportunities on your car rides, trips to the grocery store and in the rest of your daily routine. Summer always goes by too quickly so savor each and every day with your children. And, of course, remember to eat lots of popsicles.

— Erin Hull

Thanks to Inly parent Erin Hull for writing this blog post. Erin has a child in the Children’s House preschool and kindergarten program at Inly School.

This Parent Insight Event was presented by Julie Kelly-Detwiler, Assistant Head of School and Curriculum Director, and Shelley Sommer, Library Director and Middle School Literature Teacher.

Here are links to articles recommended by Shelley Sommer, Inly library director and literature teacher, during Tuesday’s event:

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