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LearningRx Offers Simple Tips to Help Kids Avoid the “Summer Sli - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

LearningRx Offers Simple Tips to Help Kids Avoid the “Summer Slide”

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va (WVIR) -  Summer vacation for students usually means plenty of time by the pool, traveling with family, and a whole lot less studying - but a Charlottesville group has some simple tips to help children avoid the so-called "summer slide".

LearningRx owner and director Dargen Coggeshall said, “The summer slide is a regression in abilities and knowledge that our school age children undergo during the two and a half months off from any kind of academic work.  It’s very measurable and real.”

According to LearningRx, when children go back to school in the fall, teachers often spend the first four to six weeks reviewing what was lost over summer break.

“The department of education has determined that about 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in math computation is lost over the summer and about a quarter of the grade level in reading is lost over the summer,” said Coggeshall.

There are some easy and engaging activities to make sure your kids stay mentally stimulated over the summer break.

 “Our brain is kind of like a muscle.  You either use it or lose it, and during the summer, children tend not to use their brain as much," said Coggeshall. 

He says, first and foremost, it is important to focus on reading and finding ways to make it fun.

“A good way to do that is to go to a local bookstore or your local library.  They have environments.  They have reading programs that really reward the child, make reading seem exciting,” said Coggeshall.

Second, balance green time with screen time and plan educational outings.

“Go to your local museum or your local nature center.  They tend to have interactive exhibits where children have to read to participate.  They can dress up in period clothing.  They can do period crafts.  They can go on a dinosaur dig," said Coggeshall.

Third, try to keep the kids on a regular sleep routine.  

“I know it's easy when summer's out and you don't have to be up at 6:30 for the bus to allow your children to stay up as late as they want and sleep late in the day, that's showing not to be very good for our brain health,” said Coggeshall.

Last, Coggeshall recommends games and brain training to work on skills like processing speed, attention and memory.

He said, “That's a great way for children to enhance those skills so that when they go back and plug into the new school year, they have not regressed.”

LearningRx has compiled a longer list of "20 Smart Ways to Spend the Summer".  Click here for a look at more of those brain-boosting activities.
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