Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Super Summer Learning Opportunities! Spread the Word!

July 17th, What a wonderful day! I am on vacation AND...It's my anniversary! 8 years ago today I married a wonderful man named Sam Ramirez! He has supported me in all of my decisions, helps out in my kindergarten classroom when he can, and he stuck with me as I ventured over to Iraq RIGHT AFTER we got married (to read that story click here)!  We have been together through thick and thin and I would say we make a pretty good team!  So with that I say, Happy Anniversary Sam...here is to many more years of happiness! 

Now lets talk about some summer learning opportunities!

In June, I went on a mission trip to St. Louis, Missouri (to hear about it check out my personal blogs Kindergarten Hugs). I was lucky enough to go on this trip with some friends who are also in education. We got to talking about how they keep their daughters up to snuff educationally throughout the summer. They proceeded to tell me that their daughters must log in 100 hours...yes, that is ONE HUNDRED hours of educational activities throughout the summer. It adds up to about an hour of educational activity per day. Of course as an educator, I was thinking "YES! This is GREAT!" Then I started to think about parent's who aren't educators and don't have the summer off, or those educators who work during their summers. I thought that 100 hours might just be impossible for them! But in reality, it is very attainable! And remember, it doesn't always have to be DRILL and PRACTICE. We don't want the kiddos to have a bad taste in their mouth about school...So, we can make it FUN for children and parents alike and some of it can be done while on vacation or while you are doing yard work! It is a learning opportunity for us adults as well!

Here are some ideas, FUN yet EDUCATIONAL, to put on that log!

  • Go to the Zoo
  •  Head to a museum 
  • Get out the sidewalk chalk and practice writing letters, numbers, and/or their name. You could also take the sidewalk chalk and use it to draw pictures and label them (i.e. parts of flower, colors of the rainbow, etc)
  • Get out that kiddie pool and do a sink/float science lesson
  • Watch an educational show on TV with your child and discuss it
  • Have your child read to you or do independent reading
  • Read to your child
  • When you are knocking down all those nasty Bee Hives, salvage one and take a closer look
  • Put food in that Bird-Feeder and discuss the different types of birds you see! 
  • Collect rocks (this is good for counting, sorting, and learning about different kinds of rocks)
  • Talk about the difference between weeds and flowers (you can do this while you are weeding the flower bed)
  • Have you child help you plant and maintain the garden.
  • When you have a rainy day, talk about the clouds and the weather...what makes it rain?
  • Workbook pages 
  • Flash Cards
  • Use those summer holidays to teach simple lessons or do simple art projects (Father's Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day and Summer Solstice)!
 Here is a simple Flag Day project I did with some kiddos ages 2-10 while on the mission trip! It was done with construction paper and red, white and blue finger paint.

This is Sydnie, she was one of the youth on the mission trip. She was a great help while we worked with the kiddos! Sydnie just graduated high school and will be going to college to get her degree in Special Education.

Another educational game we taught the kiddos at this sight was Around the world ABC's.I wrote out the letters of the alphabet in a circle on the driveway. Then each child chose a letter to stand on. Then we sang the ABC song while marching around the letters. When the song ends, I ask the first person what letter they are on. If they can't tell me, I ask if anyone can help them. Once the letter is identified, we all say it, shout it, and whisper it. Then we start again and when the song ends, a different kiddo is chosen to tell their letter.You can modify this by having kiddos tell you the sounds.

This is just a small list of learning opportunities for your child during those summer months but it is a list to get you started! And if 100 hours seems like too much, maybe start with 20 hours or 50 hours. I think you will be surprised how much the kiddos will learn and how much they will enjoy many of these activities, especially when they get to do it while spending time with someone special! 

So spread the word about logging hours during summer months! I know I will! I am going to make it a point to tell parents and give them this list at the end of the school year! But thank goodness for Blogging because some people will get a chance to still log some time THIS SUMMER!

Enjoy the rest of your summer!  


  1. Happy Anniversary, Carie!!! It sounds like you're having an awesome summer! I love the "100 Hours of Educational Activities" goal along with your suggestions. It really wouldn't be that hard to log 100 hours during the summer, especially when parents consider all the fun and creative ways they can help their kids learn. I pinned your post to my Summer Fun Pinterest Board at http://pinterest.com/debchitwood/summer-fun/

    1. Thank you Deb! I hope you are having a wonderful Summer!


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