All of our kids’ brains get a little “mushy” over the summer…summer is for play, exploring, hiking, swimming, vacations, and friends. But what if you want to sneak in a little bit of math so your kids can go back to school without losing so much of their math brain power? Here are steps that will help you to keep your child’s math brain active!
Summer Camp – Sign your child up for a math summer camp at a tutoring center or library. Whether the camp is for 1 day, 1 week, or 1 month…any amount of fun math review with other kids their age will be fun for your child. They might not want to go at first, but when your child has fun and makes friends on the first day, they will want to return
Simply buy a math workbook online or in a store which is age appropriate. Set up a simple reward system to “bribe” your kids to do 1 page per day. It will only take 20-30 minutes per day, but your child will hang onto all of that great learning they are leaving behind for awhile.
Whenever you go to the grocery store or dine out, have your child figure out the tax or tip that will need to be added to the total bill. Have them use your phone calculator. Here is a link to different sales tax rates in Utah: http://www.tax-rates.org/utah/sales-tax. If the tax rate is 3% on food, explain to them that they have to convert the percent to a decimal first (3%= .03 and 30% is .30 and 5.65%=.565). Then they have to take the total charge and multiply it by the percentage as a decimal. Then add that answer to the total bill. For example, if your restaurant bill is $67.50 and the tip is 20% the equation would be $67.50 x .20 = $13.50. Then add together $13.50 & $68.50 to find the total owing. Confused? Try it yourself a few times first!
Show your kids that math is everywhere! Are you going to Lagoon or a water park? If they really want to go, then have your child figure out how much it will cost: http://www.lagoonpark.com/tickets/. 4 adults and 2 kids? Find the prices, do the math, and then GO! It is good for kids to see how much fun activities like this cost. If the price is too much, maybe your child can find another activity online and price that one out too. Have your kids help you with the “fun budget” this summer.
Schedule a once weekly or twice weekly tutoring session. A tutor can take all of the worry away from you and give you the peace of mind that your child is learning. Make sure your and your tutor set up specific goals (in writing) for the summer months. Make sure you are scheduling enough hours to make summer tutoring worthwhile. Plan on at least 8 hours of summer instruction, and there is nothing wrong with at least 18!
Look for math wherever you can in your summer world. Just have fun with it, and also do something structured if you budget allows.