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How to help your child avoid the summer slide

School’s out and it's time for students across the Hub City to enjoy some time off from the classroom but Jackson Madison County school officials say students shouldn’t totally forget learning this summer.

“If students don’t do anything over the summer to stay academically engaged, they can lose up to thirty percent of the skills they lose that they learned during the school year" says Chief Academic Officer Dr Jared Myracle.

That loss of knowledge is referred to as the summer slide and it causes problems for teachers when classes start back in the fall.

Dr. Myracle says the summer slide forces teachers to have to play catch up with the students and push back new material by a few weeks.

He says the slide affects students of all ages.

“Younger students tend to lose more of those foundational skills, how to sound out words that our teachers have taught them. Older students lose vocabulary, words they have learned and how to make meaning out of context.”

The JMCSS recommends that students read 15-30 minutes a day over the summer as well as practice any basic math skills they can.

If you need a place for your kids to go and get that reading done, the Jackson-Madison county library says their doors are open.

Beyond the educational benefit, librarians here say that getting a kid to pick up a book and read this summer can also be a big boost to their confidence when they go back to school in the fall.

“Once a child feels like they are a reader and a book has meant something to them, then they go back to school and feel empowered. They’re picking up their school books and they can actually do it" says children's librarian Jennifer Kilbrun.

You can see a list of suggested summer reading topics from the school district as well as a full list of summer activities at the JMC library at their respective websites.

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