During the summer kids just want to have fun, right? WRONG! Believe it or not, the most fun activities are actually mentally engaging as well. I love journaling, sodoku, writing letters to friends, reading online and drawing. To get the most out of these activities, check out the bargain books section of the book store. There are usually beginning drawing and sodoku books for under $10. You can get stationary and journals there too. I recommend Starfall.com as a great online literacy resource. Another fun site for adventurous artists is http://en.origami-club.com/, where you can view step-by-step videos on how to fold origami.
The summer is off to a fun start for the three H. sisters. Since they are all different ages and have three unique learning styles, they each have different needs. Beginning in June, I have been teaching all three for the first time. The middle sister is growing academically through immersion in poetry, non-fiction organizers, and higher-level picture books. With the oldest sister headed to Bell next year, I have been introducing many foundational math concepts in algebraic terms. She's journaling, describing patterns, and experimenting with Chinese algorithms. The youngest sister is the newest addition to my day. She's ready to learn first grade strategies and won't be feeling the 'summer slump' after a summer filled with patterns, sorting alphabetic blends, and engaging kinesthetically with decodable books. Summer learning is a fun activity for the whole family!
Being a tutor with WyzAnt has been a great experience so far. I have found a lot of opportunities to grow and build my library of resources, but my favorite new strategy is an extended Zoo Phonics kit I built myself. I began to build up a plush set of zoo alphabet characters in response to working with a preschool age child. Now I have added long vowels, consonant diagraphs and tricky vowel combos such as /oo/. I am finding this extended set of plush characters to be a delight for the second through fifth graders I currently tutor. I deeply enjoy responding to new areas of demand and love to bring new finds to all of my students.