Become Your Child's Summer Teacher
by Sam Glyn Nava, B.S.Ed, M.S.CCC-SLP
Alphabet Kids Director of Educational Resources
Read with your child! Hopefully as you read some of these tips, you'll say to yourself: "Hey, I already do that!" If so, that's great and give yourself a nice pat on the back!  Now that it's summer, we don't want to bog you down with too many rules and instructions of things to do. Maybe as you're reading, you will find some new ideas you can incorporate into activities you already do to keep your child's mind focused and stimulated while having summer fun.
  1. Reading Comprehension Questions: While your child is reading ask him/her questions that pertain to the story.  This will help to make the story more interesting for your child and make sure that he/she is understanding what is being read.  Fun tip: you may even want to make a trivia game about the details or the story for when the book is finished.
  2. Money, Money, Money!!!:  Allowing your child to count, add and subtract money when you are paying or receiving change is a great way to help him/her with basic math skills as well as become more familiar with coins and bills. Fun addition: you may want to see if you can collect quarters from all of the 50 states!
  3. Stop Bugging Me!: Usually in the summer months we don't want to see bugs around the house, but letting your child explore bugs or other critters is a great way to get him/her interested in science.  Can you find two different bugs and compare and contrast them?  Fun bonus: do some research with your child about the found bugs, you may both be surprised at how some creepy crawlers benefit our ecosystem.
  4. Old News: Take a trip to the library and along with your child use a microfiche (or you can simply search on the internet) for old news about your town or city.  Can you find pictures or facts about places that you commonly visit? You can create a personalized history lesson about your everyday world.  Fun bonus: Try to find the oldest buildings or monuments in your area, how old are they?
  5. Spelling Bee: Pick some wacky words (maybe they can be summer words, funny words, animal sounds, etc.) and have a little spelling bee.  Even if you use words that are not too challenging for your child, keeping kids thinking about sounds and letter combinations is important over the summer.  Fun twist: play this game at a pool or in the yard with water balloons - if kids spell the word wrong, they don't get disqualified - they get soaked!
  6. Have an International Night: In a previous newsletter we mentioned different dishes you can make from various world cultures (Travel the World from Home) - summer is a great time to do this since kids (and sometimes parents) have more free time to enjoy the foods and different customs.  Fun extra: see how immersed your family can get, language, clothing, movies, books, foods, is the limit!