My youngest children are 2.5 and 3.5, and they are pretty darn bright. They both know their ABC's by memory and can identify all letters and numbers, and they both use pretty proper grammar and have huge vocabularies. So getting them to enjoy learning activities during the summer is easy. They jump right into them!
My teen, on the other hand, takes a bit more effort and creativity. Clearly, at 13, Kyle knows his ABC's and has no interest in very "juvenile" crafts and science experiments. Nope. He's too old and too cool for all of that. (Having a teen is very trying at times, haha.)
So since Kyle is harder to please, I have to find educational activities that are on his level. I don't want learning to feel like a punishment, you know? Kyle really enjoys online learning games, reading teen thrillers, and watching documentaries. When he finds something he likes, we research further, opening up a whole dialogue about the topic. Then the most amazing thing happens...He grabs his laptop and really starts researching and learning about things. Yep. A teen, choosing to study in the middle of the summer. Then he shares his new knowledge with us, and he gets very enthusiastic about it. Pretty awesome, if you ask me!
Seeing my son embrace learning this way has been inspiring. Maybe I should consider taking some online courses this summer. I know there are lots of options out there like online colleges, LeanForward, and other certificate programs. I have always had an interest in business and marketing. Hmm...Maybe I will have to check it out!
How do you encourage learning during the summer months? I'd love to hear your ideas!