Happy summer! We hope you are having a great time chilling on the beach or sipping drinks in your backyard. Although summer is super fun and rewarding, you still need to keep your mind in shape.
Now, don’t groan. KidMag understands the pain of learning in summer – which is why we have come up with a list of short, easy, and even fun ways to keep up your intelligence in July and August.
- Do some summer reading. All it takes is a book that you enjoy and will actually want to read. So, if you like scary movies, maybe you will enjoy mystery novels, or if you like fairy tales you might like fantasy novels. If you need more motivation to read this summer, try creating a reading challenge. See how many books you can read this summer, and when you finish each book, treat yourself by getting something like ice cream or a pedicure.
- Are you going on a road trip this summer? This activity is great for long car rides in new places. Here is the activity: while driving through a city you haven’t been before, be on the lookout for new words you haven’t heard of before. When you see a word that you don’t know the meaning of, ask your parents the definition or look it up it online. See how many new words you can learn during your vacation.
- Feeling creative? Try writing your very own story this summer! You can get ideas from your vacation, things you’ve done, or just let the ideas come to you. Check out KidMag’s guide to writing a great story to help with structure and organization.
- Need to keep up on your time’s tables? Many kids struggle with the same thing every summer. To help yourself remember, make flashcards and quiz your self or have a family member quiz you. At the end of the week, have a “Quiz Off” with your sibling or another family member.
Here is how to play: Choose someone to play against ( friend, sibling, parent) and go through your stack of flashcards. The first person to answer the question correctly wins a point. When you are out of flash cards, count up the points. Whoever has the most wins. If it is a tie, you can flip another card to see who wins. Every game that you win, have a small treat such as a gummy or trading card. This also works other math concepts such as division, subtraction, geometry etc.
- Do some real-world math! This is great because it polishes your math skills while figuring out an amount or distance that you need to know. Here are some examples of opportunities when you can use some math skills.
- On your road trip, you drive 70 Km a day, and your trip is 9 days. How many kilometres did you drive?
- For your annual summer barbecue, you buy 4 boxes of popsicles. One box has 8 popsicles and costs 64 dollars. How much does each popsicle cost?
- Out on your boat, you and your family are learning to wakeboard. You stay on your board for 9.40 seconds, your sister stays on for 7.57 seconds, your mom stays on for 12.89 seconds and your brother stays on for 6.03 seconds. How long did your family wakeboard in total?
- Play multiplication war! This twist on the classic game “War” is another great way to top up on times tables.
Here is how to play: These rules are pretty much the same as a normal war, except instead of the person with the highest card taking the point, you multiply the two cards together and the first person to say the correct answer wins the card. For example, you draw a 3 and the other person draws a 7. 3 times 7 is 21. If you get it right first, you keep both of the cards.
- Keep up with current events by reading the newspaper or an online news site (this one is great and made specifically for kids). Think about the article after you have read it, and ask your self the following questions:
1. How did this make me feel?
2. What’s my opinion on the article?
3. Is there any bias?
4. Does the news reporter do a good job of explaining the topic to the reader?
These are a few questions to deepen your understanding of the article.
- Are you travelling to a new country this summer? This is a great learning opportunity to learn about different cultures, customs, religions, foods, and much more! While travelling in your new country keep a travel journal and document everything you see or notice. Here are some examples of what you could include:
1. What do you notice is different from where you live?
2. What is similar?
3. How do people dress?
4. What types of food do you see or smell a lot?
5. What’s the weather like?
6. Would you call the city undeveloped or modern?
7. Are the citizens kind?
8. What does the city seem to be proud of?
9. Do the citizens have strong accents?
10. Do they speak another language?
11. How are the schools different/similar from home?
12. Do you think you would like living here?
- Are you planning on doing any hiking this summer? If the answer is yes, you can benefit from this activity! When you are on your next hike through the woods, stop and look at flowers, keep track of wildlife and identify what type of soil you are walking on. Research animals or plants that you don’t know and keep a scrapbook of all the new plants and animals you learned about.
- Are you camping this summer? This activity is great for camping because it requires you to stargaze, a traditional camping activity. When it gets dark, take your sleeping bag and blankets to a clear spot where the sky is clearly visible and stargaze. Try to find Ursa Major (the Big Dipper) Ursa Minor (Little Dipper) Orion’s Belt, Big Bear, Polaris, and sometimes planets.
- Going on a plane ride? Look outside the window and identify the wing, jet engine, aileron, and flaps on the plane. Think about how the plane flies using an airfoil, pressure, thrust, drag, lift, and gravity. Take a look at the clouds around you and try to identify what type of clouds that you are passing through.
We hope you enjoyed KidMag’s guide to staying sharp in the summer. Make sure to let us know what your favourite activity was and if it helped you via our contact page!