Summer break is the perfect time for kids to let loose and enjoy their free time for a couple months before moving onto a higher grade level. With all the demands the rest of the year brings, school work, sporting activities and the like, kids deserve a little break.
During one of my girls parent teacher interviews awhile back we were discussing her math skills, the teacher had mentioned something that stuck with me. “Kids lose their academic skills if they are not actively learning”. If you want to ensure that your child will have the least amount of difficulties jumping back into their school curriculum come the new school year, it’s important to keep kids minds active. Many teachers will tell you that repetitiveness is one of the main ingredients to the success of a child’s math maintenance. Simply by making a habit of reviewing, your child should be able to make a smooth transition into their new grade without much difficulty.
5 Ways to Accomplish this are:
1. Worksheets – There are a number of printable math worksheets that are a quick and easy math brush-up task. Give your kids a new math worksheet every other day throughout the summer to keep up with their math skills and be ready for the new and tougher math year.
2. Time Management – I have always encouraged my kids to use analog verses digital time; I have been disturbingly surprised by some kids that when asked the time on an analog clock, have no idea how to tell the time. Digital clocks are definitely easier to have around the house but without basic time telling skills, are a detriment to kids. One of the ways I helped my kids learn the basics was by buying them an analog watch to wear. I would use phrases to test their time telling skills, such as “I will pick you up at half past 3” or “be ready at quarter to 9”. Now that they are older, one of my favourite time management lessons for my kids is to give them a time limit to complete a number of tasks; it is up to them to manage their time accordingly.
3. Measurements – Ask your child to measure something for you. I often ask my kids to measure me out fractions while baking where my husband will ask the kids to measure using a measuring tape for various DIY construction projects we have going on around the house. Surprisingly, my 10 year old, Squeakers, prefers the measuring tape tasks whereas my 13 year old, Hollywood, enjoys both.
4. Playing Games – Playing games like dice, cards or even board games together is an easy way to brush up on math skills without noticing they are actually learning. Some of our favourites are the 10,000 point dice game and the card games, “War” and “NOSE”.
5. Money Management – Ask your kids to make a budget for their spending and to manage their allowance by saving a certain amount out of each week, for instance my kids are required to save 40% towards savings and the rest they can spend as they please. This works well for older kids but when my kids were younger, I would simply tell them a dollar amount that they were required to subtract. Another great way to work on math skills is by having your kids count out money when making purchases at retail locations.
Math sites for worksheets, printables and more:
Addition and Subtraction