Published June 7th, 2023
min read
Parent Resources

Prevent the 'Summer Slide' With These 10 Tips

Lauren Sittel
Literacy Specialist

Here are ten effective ways to prevent the summer slide during the break with your child.

As summer vacation approaches, parents often face the challenge of preventing their children from experiencing the notorious "summer slide" — the loss of academic skills and knowledge during the break. However, with a little planning and creativity, you can transform this period into a time of engaging and enriching experiences for your kids. Here are 10 effective ways to prevent the summer slide and make the most of your child's vacation.

1. Encourage Reading Adventures

Reading is a powerful tool to combat learning loss during the summer. Visit your local library together and let your child choose books that capture their interest. Set aside a regular reading time each day and discuss the stories afterward. Summer reading programs like those offered by public libraries provide incentives and support to keep kids motivated. If you’re looking for a great summer reading program, we cordially invite you to Ello’s Summer Reading Challenge.

2. Explore the Great Outdoors

You don’t have to stick to indoor activities to prevent the summer slide. Take advantage of the warm weather and plan family outings to parks, nature trails, and botanical gardens. Engaging with nature promotes critical thinking and provides an opportunity for hands-on learning experiences. You can make turn any outdoor adventure into a fun literacy activity with just one tool: a nature journal. Whether the journal is full of words or pictures, it encourages observation, organizing thoughts, and appreciation of the world.

prevent the summer slide

3. Cultivate a Scientific Mindset

Encourage your child to conduct simple experiments at home using age-appropriate resources. These hands-on science activities will spark curiosity and foster a love for inquiry-based learning. You can boost the literacy aspect of any experiment by modeling how to read and follow directions. Depending on your child’s reading skills, they can even read some of the directions themselves.

4. Build Math and Literacy Skills through Play

Incorporate math and reading into everyday activities to make it fun and practical for your child. Cooking together offers opportunities for measuring ingredients and understanding fractions as well as reading instructions, while board games and puzzles promote problem-solving skills, logical thinking, and mathematical reasoning.

5.  Make Movie Night Educational

Children are endlessly curious about the world around them, so sprinkle in a few documentaries among your summer movie night picks. Common Sense Media has a fantastic list of recommendations (complete with full descriptions) to get you started!

6. Foster Creativity through Arts and Crafts

Engage in artistic activities that stimulate imagination and creativity. Set up an art corner at home with various materials, encouraging your child to explore different art techniques and express themselves through drawing, painting, or crafting.

7. Embrace Technology for Learning

Choose age-appropriate educational apps, websites, or online learning platforms that support your child's academic growth. It probably comes as no surprise that our favorite app is Read With Ello! Summer is the perfect time for an Ello subscription because it provides educational screen time that keeps your child’s reading skills growing in a fun, engaging way. It’s a simple, effective, and fun tool to help prevent the summer slide.

prevent the summer slide

8. Start a Family Book Club

Turn reading into a social activity by starting a family book club. Choose a book that suits everyone's interests and take turns reading chapters aloud. Discussing the story enhances reading comprehension and encourages critical thinking and communication skills.

9. Travel and Explore New Places

Plan a family trip or explore nearby attractions. Visiting historical sites, museums, and cultural landmarks offers valuable learning opportunities while creating lasting memories.

10. Foster a Love for Lifelong Learning

Be a role model by engaging in your own intellectual pursuits, reading books, and discussing ideas with your child. Show enthusiasm for knowledge and be open to learning from each other, creating an environment where curiosity and a growth mindset thrive.

You Can Do This!

It's possible to prevent the summer slide and make great memories by incorporating a combination of educational and recreational activities. Encourage reading, outdoor exploration, scientific curiosity, and creative endeavors. Enroll in summer programs, embrace technology for learning, and foster a love for lifelong learning. By following these strategies, you can make the most of your child's summer vacation and ensure continued academic growth.