“Once students return from summer break, so much of our time is spent on reviewing stuff that was taught during the previous year.” Complaints like these are common from teachers who find out that students do not read at home and fall back on their reading skills while they are at home.
While students are away from formal classroom settings and are not revising the studies, they go through a summer reading loss. Continue reading and learn what summer reading loss is, why it occurs, and how parents can ensure that their child does not struggle with this.
What is Summer Reading Loss?
Summer reading loss is the deterioration of children’s reading skills during summer vacation when children are not participating in formal literacy programs. Studies show that all students who do not read at home suffer from this loss, while low-performing students and those students belonging to a lower socioeconomic class are most impacted by this.
Why Does Summer Reading Loss Occur?
The question arises that if a student has already learned how to read, why is it that a break from studying during the summer holidays reverses this progress? It is because reading is a skill like any other, and mastering it needs practice.
When low-performing students stop practicing, their progress is quickly hampered. Students from low-income households are particularly at risk because they often do not have access to reading materials outside class. In some cases, even when children wish to improve their reading proficiency, parents themselves are not aware of the benefits of reading at home, and therefore fail to provide reading materials to their children.
Ways to Curb Summer Reading Loss:
Parents must realize the importance of reading with children and make sure that they have the reading materials to provide to their children. Here are some ways that parents, teachers, and the school could work together to ensure that students do not suffer from summer reading loss.
- The schools should conduct workshops for parents to communicate the importance of reading.
- Teachers could make a list of the books available at the local library that would interest the kids and share it with parents,
- Teachers could assign students the task of reading three to five books and sharing their thoughts about it once school reopens.
- Parents can watch movies based on books with their children that may pique their kids’ interest in the books.
- Parents could strengthen their children’s reading skills by asking them to read things around them, such as grocery lists, cereal boxes, menu cards, etc.
- Elder siblings could read to and with younger siblings.
Summer reading loss is a common occurrence, but it is something that can be avoided. Small steps from teachers and parents can ensure that the loss does not occur. Instead, when students return from summer vacations, their reading skills could be polished further, and they could kickstart the new academic year with invigorated spirit and enthusiasm.