School’s Out?! Now what are we going to do?!

Well, not quite…we still have a full day tomorrow and report cards are to be picked up on Thursday.

It’s that time of year again.  The changing of the seasons and the growth spurts of our children remind us that nothing stays the same, and we can only do our best to keep up with that law of our world: everything changes.

So, you ask: “Mr. Rongcal, what can I do with my child at home to make sure they continue learning and are ready for 3rd grade?” The first thing I would say is that learning is woven into our lives; it’s not something that should feel like work 1 or 2 hours a day then completely forgotten about.  Here are a few things you all know already, but is worth repeating:

– Talk and converse

After you watch a movie, ask: “Why did the main character choose to read books instead of watch TV?  Why did the superhero become evil all of a sudden?  If you could change the ending, how would you change it?  Why? Could that really happen in real life? Why?”

– Encourage their curiosity and interests

Side Story: When I was 12 years old I was in a school play (Hamlet in 6th grade, I know…It was a big deal.  We were in the paper and everything!).  I wanted to be an actor, but all my siblings played sports…so, I had to play sports too.  I can’t remember why my family didn’t encourage me more to do pursue acting, but I wish they had.  7 years later: I stopped playing sports, tried acting again and performed in a community college production of “The Odyssey”.  However, I felt out of place with the other acting students, and never had the same interest in acting since playing a 12 year-old Polonius.

Answer her questions. Ask her questions. 

The only way that you can really be sure REAL LEARNING is happening is by having a conversation of inquiry with both questions and answers (or hints towards answers).

– Connect learning to real life.

Example 1: If you are buying an ice cream cone, ask your child if they can find the price on the menu.  Ask: “Can I pay with 5 dollars?  Can I pay with 7 quarters?  How much change will I get back? etc.”

Example 2: While driving in a car, ask: “If we pick up 10 monkeys and each of them have 3 bananas, How many bananas will be in our car?  What if 3 of those monkeys jump into a tree?  How many bananas will be in our car now?  How many bananas are in the tree?  How many Banana Splits can we make?” You get the idea.

Example 3: While on a plane, looking at a map: “Where are we? Where are we going? What direction is that?  North? North East? What is the temperature there?  Is that hot or cold?  Do you know which ocean that is?  etc. etc.

– READ, READ, READ

This one is self-explanatory.

I hope that’s helpful.  It’s a long summer, and we want to make sure our children don’t risk falling behind when September comes.

I will make one more post on this website this week before the year is over.

Also, scroll down this page for this week’s schedule, or click here.

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