Learning loss has been a hot topic over the past couple of years. Parents have tried to determine what their students might have lost as a direct result of COVID-19. As a result, more parents are aware of the potential for a “summer slide”. This is when students lose some of the learning they have gained over the course of the school year. Is the “summer slide” a real thing? Do you need to be worried about it? Make sure you know the facts so that you can make the right learning decisions for your student.
What Is the Summer Slide?
The summer slide is the learning loss that students experience over the course of the summer months. This is when they are not involved in academic activities and not working toward learning goals. Oft-cited statistics suggest that students may lose about 20% of what they learn in reading and 27% of what they learn in math during the school year over the course of the summer months. An estimated 9 out of 10 teachers note that they have to reteach concepts that children have already visited when they return for the next school year.
That research, however, might not be as conclusive as originally thought. More recent information suggests that, while students might gain knowledge at a slower rate over the summer months, they do not necessarily show full learning loss in the form of actual decreases in what they have learned.
Revisiting the Summer Slide
New research suggests that the summer slide might not be as pronounced as some people think. In fact, more than 22% of students may actually show gains over the summer months. Furthermore, several other factors may account for the so-called summer slide, including:
- Less effort put into fall tests than spring ones, which may matter more for both student and teacher accountability
- How much learning students have gained over the course of the school year. Students who have had immense gains, often due to significant support in school, may be more likely to show large slides
- Student activities over the summer
Research continues into how summer learning loss occurs and its long-term impact on students. It further discussed how to provide the best chance of alleviating that learning loss. Students who are allowed the opportunity to continue learning over the summer, including access to books that interest them, may also be less likely to show signs of learning loss when they return to school.
Making the Best of Summer With Academic Programs
Whether you’re worried about learning loss for your student or not, there are a lot of advantages to participating in a summer learning program.
- Summer learning programs can help students gain or strengthen skills they may not have mastered during the school year.
- Summer learning programs offer the students the opportunity to take classes or pursue interests that may not be available during a typical school year.
- Students can stay on a consistent routine. This proves easier for both students and parents than shifting to a “summer routine” that is primarily made up of flexibility and a lack of overall routine.
- Students in summer learning programs may have the opportunity to explore different styles and types of learning.
Learn More About the Summer Slide
Whether you want your student to enjoy higher levels of academic success in the coming school year or you simply want to offer more opportunities this summer, consider the advantage of a summer learning program for your student. At The Tenney School, we offer a variety of summer learning opportunities and a platform that focuses on your student’s specific needs. Contact us today to learn more about our programs and how they can benefit your student this summer.