Educational Resources to Improve Summer Retention – Incentivized Learning

The kids may have another school year nearly behind them, but you certainly don’t want them forgetting everything they learned by September! Even when I was in school, I remember spending the first month or two of my school year doing nothing more than reviewing the previous year. Because of this, I thought I’d compile some wonderful resources for you to use this summer to help keep your child’s learning on track. These are resources I’ve used myself as a homeschooling Mom, so I can vouch for their efficacy outside of the classroom.

1.) Time4Learning (PreK-12) – We use this program routinely and have for years for Math, Social Studies, Language Arts, and Science. It offers interactive animated characters who present the information in a manner that enhances understanding. There are quizzes and multiple choice problems, games, reading, writing activities, etc. The consistency and familiarity of the way the information is presented grade after grade, subject after subject, is also immensely helpful. There is no adaptation to style necessary for your child to learn each topic. You can also skip ahead with this program. For example, my son is registered for 4th grade, but we use 5th grade resources routinely. Third through fifth are available to us with the fourth grade package.

And now through June 30th, Time4Learning is offering half off your first month. The regular rates are $19.95/student per month ($9.98 through June) for PreK- 8th Grade ($14.95 for each additional student – $7.47 through June) and $30 ($15 through June) for High School/student per month (includes 4 courses)

Take a look at the demonstrations they have available. Simply choose your child’s grade and you can see what your children will see. Another bonus to this program is that you can cancel at any time or even suspend the program if you’ll be taking a break.

2.) IXL Math and English (PreK-8 Math + Algebra 1, Algebra 2 & Geometry/English for select grades)– We also use this program as a supplemental activity. I wouldn’t recommend it for primary learning as it requires understanding to do the problems and answer the questions. It’s more like flash cards and timed quizzes. It has questions like, “Look at the adjective. Does it tell you what kind or how many?” Well, to answer this, you have to know what an adjective is in the first place. So if you need a reinforcement tool, I highly recommend this program. If you’re looking for instructional basics, this isn’t for you unless you’ll be doing some guided learning activities yourself.

3.) Summer Bridge Books (Grades PreK-8) – I love these Summer Bridge Activity Books. They’re transitional books designed specifically to prepare your child for the grade they’ll be entering and retain what was learned in the previous year. The activities correspond to the length of time they’ll be off school and it takes just 15 minutes to complete the daily activities. They’re fun and engaging workbooks.

4.) ABC Mouse (ages 2-6) – They’re offering a free one month trial of their early learning program. This program will help your child get ready for school with educational books, games, and traceables, as well as an interactive farm and zoo to visit and explore. You can read more about it in a post I wrote last year.

5.) Scholastic Teacher Express – There are so many fabulous $1 ebooks here. You’ll find everything from Math to History and every subject in between. There are Read-Aloud plays and Hands-On History lessons and Math Origami all the way down to the basics like, “Follow the Directions!” Plus, you can use the code DAA10STE to save 10% on your $20 purchase making each one just 90¢ when you buy 20 of them. While you’re there, you can grab a free downloadable Weather Report Chart to help younger children get a handle on the weather changes over the summer. There are also free monthly samplers available to download, too.

And you know, not all kids are naturally motivated to learn. Who knew?!? Hah! In my next post, we’ll talk about some incentivized summer programs out there to reward kids for a job well done. That’ll help get ‘em moving in the right direction. When we’ve finished covering that, we’ll talk about free learning resources that are available for you to use if you’re cash strapped.

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