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Prevent Summer Learning Loss

Prevent Summer Learning Loss

Will This School Year be Better or Worse?

Did your child not do as well as expected last year, making you worried about the fall? Did you know that research shows that ALL students experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer?

On average, students lose approximately 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills during the summer months. Reading skill loss is not as significant IF your child is reading at or above grade level. However, those students who are behind slip further behind.

When asked, over 50% of students would like to get ahead during the summer and not be behind in the fall. Most teachers will tell you they spend the first part of each year reviewing and for many motivated students it is clearly not enough. 

The summer months are an excellent time for your child to fill in learning gaps or zoom ahead with enrichment activities at state licensed supplemental learning centers like Total Learning Centers.

Preventing summer learning loss is under your control!

Dr. Cooper, a professor at Duke University found that kids do forget over the summer. He also found that summer learning programs have a significant positive effect, and those positive effects are greater for middle-class kids than for poor kids. He also found while students lose ground in all areas the greatest loss occurs in math. His hypothesis is that parents are better about making sure students read over the summer and many schools have summer reading requirements. They seem to not do as much math over the summer. That’s where fun activities at a learning center come to the rescue!

Whether encouraging reading, writing, math or some other academic area, it is always good to keep our children’s brain stimulated over the summer months. Keep it simple, fun, and stimulating, as well as flexible. Some students do better reading electronic books. For example, the iPad and the Kindle allow you to determine what your child does on the device. You can set it for 15 minutes of games, 15 minutes of video, and then an hour of reading. With the time left this summer, find the right balance between structure and flexibility. Work with your child and learning center to create flexibility within and between structured learning to help your child prepare this summer for success this fall. It’s not too late this summer!


Cooper, H., Charlton, K., Valentine, J. C., & Muhlenbruck, L. (2000). Making the most of summer school. A meta-analytic and narrative review. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 65 (1, Serial No. 260), 1-118.

Cooper, H., Nye, B., Charlton, K., Lindsay, J., & Great house, S. (1996). The effects of summer vacation on achievement test scores: A narrative and meta-analytic review. Review of Educational Research, 66, 227-268.

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