Nifty vs. Thrifty

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Fostering Learning through the Summer Months

1. Comb yard sales, bookstores, or libraries to find fun reading material or activities. Although you would like your children to study hard over the summer months, let them have some freedom and choose some fun reading materials or activities of their own for their summer break. Remember, children do work very hard during the year and deserve a little independence.
2. Encouragement If a child says, "I don't like anything", don't accept this as an excuse. Everyone has interests, it's a matter of discovering them. Find some books that are about some of your child's interests such as baseball, legos, or dogs. Make sure they are on the child's reading level (ask a librarian if you need help).
3. Avoid a power struggle. Children usually argue about having to read. Often, it helps to distract your child from the power struggle and instead focus on something that they can control such as where they can read. I like to ask children to look for the perfect reading spot and then ask, "who wants to set the timer?"
Also, try to avoid an argument. If it's something you feel strongly about than there shouldn't be anything to discuss. Think ahead and be realistic about your expectations. Asking a child to read all day long is asking for trouble!!
4. Use incentives. No, I am not saying you should bribe your children. But I will say that it helps to use something else to motivate such as t.v time. You could say, "OK, you can have 1 hour of t.v time today if you read for 45 minutes."
5. Find a Pen Pal. Remember the days when you were a child and had a pen pal? Well, believe it or not, you can still find a pen pal. Google 'Pen Pal' for sites that will connect kids with other kids around the fun!?
6. Visit museums and take trips that inspire creative thinking. There are so many places that encourage children to think outside the box. Continue to check out my site for many more ideas for summer road trips and activities!
7. Read to your kids. Children of any age can still have books read to them! Have your child pick a book for bedtime for you to read to them or ask them if they would read a book to a sibling. Older children generally love to be a leader and read to little ones. Of course, these can be great family moments to cherish!
8. Check out educational websites such as,,, or

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