Schools Out But the Learning Needs to Continue to Prevent the Summer Slide
Wednesday, July 10th, 2019
Now that we’re over a month into the summer break, kids have recovered from final exams and end of year testing. Vacations, camps and lazy days are now on top of the to do lists. But it’s important to make sure they don’t lose everything they just learned over the course of the last nine months.
According to a Brookings study, on average, students’ achievement scores declined over summer vacation by one month’s worth of school-year learning, declines were sharper for math than for reading, and the extent of loss was larger at higher grade levels. They also concluded that income-based reading gaps grew over the summer, given that middle class students tended to show improvement in reading skills while lower-income students tended to experience loss.
There are many ways to disguise internet learning as fun. Introducing kids to online games and activities are always a good way to stimulate the mind. You can also find a blog or website that features your student’s interests. Having your kids read the blogs out loud to you or another family member can help them with their reading and comprehension skills. There’s a wide range of activities that can stimulate learning while still enjoying what they’re doing.
In today’s world, having your student connected to the internet is one easy way to eliminate the “summer slide.” Despite significant progress over the last decade, internet adoption remains a major challenge for low-income families across the United States.
A fast, reliable internet connection is no longer a luxury, as more than 75 percent of K-12 teachers assign internet-based homework. Before they can even start working on an assignment, students who lack internet at home must find a ride to their local library or other public internet access point during normal operating hours. Understandably, it’s hard for them to imagine exceling to their full potential when fulfilling basic requirements is a daily struggle.
While kids can’t take the internet home in their backpacks, there is a solution. Cox’s Connect2Compete program is helping close the digital divide with discounted internet service for families with at least one K-12 student living in public housing or qualifying for a free or reduced school lunch through the National School Lunch Program. For under $10 a month, the family can be connected to the internet, allowing access to important information of school reports, teacher communications, job applications and much, much more. And according to a recent survey, it works! Parents of Connect2Complete students agree the program:
Gives children a leg up for high school graduation (91 percent)
Helps students get higher grades (89 percent).
Makes children more interested in school work (88 percent)
Makes it easier to communicate with teachers and the school (95 percent)
Sets children up for success (94 percent)
The survey also revealed most Connect2Compete customers are first-time internet users. Many first-time internet users lack the digital literacy skills necessary to make the most of their internet connection. To help bridge this gap, Cox offers free digital literacy training and resources through the Cox Digital Academy. The academy features content, tools and resources from Common Sense Media, EVERFI and the Public Library Association. Spanish-language resources are also available and range from computer and internet basics to educational games for students of all ages.
Getting homework done can be challenging ANY circumstance. But now ALL students can get a leg up in school by having fast, reliable internet connection at home.