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6 Resources for Appropriate Summer Practice

summer practice summer reading summer slide

The end of the school year is rapidly approaching here in the United States. For many children,  the end of the school year can bring about stress and uncertainty. Many of our students have feelings of anxiety - they may be a bit more anxious than excited about the school year ending. 

Typically, the school year helps our students to establish positive routines and relationships that support them. A change in these routines can often trigger stress responses, especially in our students who learn differently.

From a personal perspective, as moms, we see these changes even in our own kids as the end of the school year approaches. It’s important for us as parents and educators to be mindful of the behaviors and what those are communicating to us. 

We also want to be mindful of the summer slide. We know that children can sometimes lose the gains they made during the school year over the summer. However, avoiding the summer slide may look different for some students than others. 

Today, we’ll share ideas and resources for appropriate summer practice for your children with learning challenges. These are the things that we feel are really beneficial to use in the summer. 

Here are 6 Resources for Appropriate Summer Practice for Children with Learning Challenges:

Depending on the child and that child’s needs, the amount of use will vary. For instance, one child might benefit from 1:1 work with a tutor in the summer but another student might benefit from reduced sessions with their tutor for the summer. 

1. Bring summer into learning

You can practice writing letters in the sand with a stick on the beach or on the sidewalk with chalk. Then put boxes around the letters and play hopscotch.

There are many different literacy activities you can incorporate at a beach, lake, or pond. Or, if you’re not by the water, you can play similar games with sidewalk chalk and bubbles. 

2. Check out these shows and apps!

Sounder & Friends is a favorite of our kids. It provides great help with phonemic awareness. Wallykazam! is on Nick Jr. It’s great for building early letter-sound connections and word building. 

Older students love The Who Was Show. This show is great for building background knowledge. Providing more information about topics they will be exposed to in the future is really powerful.

Wonderopolis is great for curious learners. If they have lots of questions and need to know why. Check out this website for research and exploration. This will also help to build background knowledge.

If you can, sit and watch or explore these resources with them! Then, you can engage with your kids in conversation and help build vocabulary. 

3. Visit your public library

One of the best resources you can use in the summer is your own public library. They are filled with opportunities and usually FREE! They are ready to assist families with summer reading while school is out. They may even have some incentivized programs, too. 

Please utilize your public library as much as possible.

4. Family book club

Starting a family book club this summer is a great way to spend family time while embracing literacy. You can choose a physical book or use an audiobook. Then sit down together and listen or read a little bit each day followed by some conversations.  

5. Assure access to audiobooks

Especially for our friends with dyslexia, access to audiobooks is a great idea for summer. This can count as their summer reading! 

You can reach out to us for suggestions for age/level-specific books as well as apps and platforms where you can access them.  Audiobooks provide a bridge to higher-level reading than our children can access on their own. 

Audiobooks are also a great tool for road trips!

6. Play word games

Speaking of road trips… road trips are also a great time to play word and sound games with your kids. Think about games like I Spy or use Pig Latin. Playing word games in the car is a great way to weave learning into small spaces without stress.

For even more on the legal side of dyslexia, check out our latest episode of the Together in Literacy podcast. If you like what you hear, don’t forget to rate, leave a positive review, and subscribe!

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