If you have ever nosed around Family Faith and Fridays before you already know that I am a big believer in Summer School. Yes, I was one of those public schoolers who forgot everything I learned because of that May-August summer break. You want to know why schools review for the first 8 weeks of each new school year? For kids like me who totally let it all drop out of their brains while enjoying their summer break!
When we decided to homeschool I knew that I was not going to fall into that trap. If you ask me, I will tell you we homeschool year round. But the reality is that our summers do look a little different from our fall and spring sessions. We almost always have finished up the textbooks and bulk of workbooks for the “school year” in May, especially now, thanks to our Sabbath Week School schedule.
So what does our summer school like like?
Read and review! Yep, that simple!
When my children are younger, I compile a list of books that I want them to read and then allow them to work their way through the stack. We set aside an hour of reading time each day, which not only keeps up their reading skills, but also allows for a quiet hour during the day. Who doesn’t need a quiet hour, right? Even non readers can spend an hour curled up somewhere cozy looking at their favorite books or even listening to books on tape. Every few books, I do encourage a “book report”. For this summer, I found a cute little book report book, the idea being to keep up our writing skills and check for reading comprehension. It is simple, so pretty non threatening, and finished pages can be displayed on the fridge to showcase his work. My older children are free to pick out their own books, making the local library a frequented spot. Because at their level (middle school and high school) I know they have the comprehension thing down, their reading is mainly for fun. I do have some older books on our shelves I slip in to their piles to round out their lists.
As for review– this is where I get excited and they do not. But, I am the momma and I get to be boss. I am fun like that!
I have always been a fan of Abeka’s Vacation Stations. If you have not seen these cool books you are in for a treat, They are broken into ten week units, and each day has a different subject concentration. They only require a few minutes of time each day, but review math, vocabulary, writing, math and more for the grade you just completed and help get your child for the next grade as well. Each year is a fun, unique theme and the only complaint I have is they stop at 6th grade.
Here is another fun set I found off Amazon for all you Star Wars fans. I know my 2nd grader will love these.
Since I also have an older son, I bought Spectrum books for three subjects to review- math, writing and language arts. By buying the grade he just finished we can make sure he is up to speed and close any holes we may find. Spectrum books tend to be good for that, as well as a good review before you do any required testing you may need to do to fulfill your state requirements. He will be required to spend an hour each day on the workbooks.
And our highschooler? Well, since she has taken the ACT and is doing online dual credit college classes, she gets a break from the review part. She can thank me later!
In case you are worried, yes, we still enjoy our summer! The kids days are filled with summer jobs, pool time, play, vacations and more. But they also continue their learning by taking a few hours each day to read and review! It keeps us in a good routine and allows us to hit the ground running when the begin their new grade in the fall.