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4 things your child's teacher wishes you would do during the summer
The truth is teachers still think about our students during the summer break. Here are a few things you can do with your child during the summer that any teacher would approve of. - photo by Lyndsi Frandsen
Ah, can you hear it? The summer celebration. As a teacher and a mom, Im cheering as loud as anybody. While the first week or two of summer vacation will be an ultimate demonstration of summer freedom (no alarm clocks, no school bells, no backpacks, no tests should I keep going?), the truth is teachers still think about our students during the summer break. We desperately hope all of our efforts the past nine months wont slip down the ... waterslide. We completely turn our teaching reigns over to you, the parents, and trust those students will be on track come fall. Want to help make that happen? Do these four things and well give you an "A+" on that first report card: Keep up a routine

A routine plays a vital role in a successful school environment. Keeping to some sort of summer schedule makes the transition back to school in the fall a little easier (for everyone involved). There will be many days when late nights, late mornings and no naps are just the summer way, but try your best to keep to some reasonable schedule most of the time.

And remember: a routine is just an important as a schedule. Provide your kids with daily tasks and responsibilities (that dont include the remote control or iPad). Caring for a small garden, feeding and walking household pets, or watering an elderly neighbors flowers are all great places to start! A break from school shouldnt mean a break from all responsibility.

Keep a summer journal

We hear so much about reading, but writing is a powerful tool that integrates many areas of education. It taps in to a creative outlet that cannot be accessed any other way. Provide your child with a notebook and encourage him or her to write a daily sentence or paragraph or draw, depending on age about the different things they did that day. Not only will it keep brains sharp and exercise writing skills, it will provide you and your children with a fun tradition that will end up being a forever treasure!

Become 'regulars' at your local library

Most parents have heard about and been threatened with the dreaded summer slide. Despite educational gains made during the school year, disadvantaged students tend to fall behind during the summer months. In fact, research shows summer learning loss accounts for two-thirds of the ninth-grade achievement gap in reading.

Take advantage of the reading programs offered at your local library. Many libraries even provide tutoring opportunities for students who may be at risk. At the very least, frequenting the library will allow your child to continue to be exposed to literature and reading materials they may otherwise not have access to. It also places them in a somewhat structured environment where quiet, respect and decorum are in practice. (So, slightly different behavioral expectations than the community pool!)

Take field trips

Summer would not be summer without trips to the pool, parks and splash pads, but there are many other learning opportunities your child can benefit from. Scheduling field trips in to your summer vacation is a great way to keep your childs brain stimulated and exposed to new things. Plan a trip to a childrens museum, a local farm or community animal shelter. Learning opportunities shouldnt end with the school year.