Ah, summer time! Arguably the second most favorite time of the year for kids. Parents, have you heard of what’s called “summer learning loss?” As we enter the month June, the vast majority of kids have already mentally checked out of school. Most of our kids are simply spending their remaining days of school, clock watching, counting down the final days, hours, minutes and even seconds until school is finished. Most of them are quite jubilant with the idea of not having to go through the whole school routine for the next several months. Thinking and using their brains from an academic stand point is probably the furthest thing from their minds.
Two Steps Back
On average, students lose 2 months of reading and math skills over the summer. As the old adage goes: “you either use it or loose it.” Losing 2 months of reading and math skills can have a enormous negative impact, which can result in your child struggling at the start of the new school year.
Summer Learning Loss, Focus & Martial Arts
As Americans, we cherish the notion of summer as a time of relaxation and fun. I too, view the summer months from the same lens. However, I don’t believe we should take our foot off the proverbial “pedal” entirely. Doing so as I mentioned earlier can come with a heavy cost to your child academically. Here are 3 tips that could help prevent summer learning loss.
- Develop a Summer Reading Plan- experts say that reading 4 to 5 books over the summer is a great way to prevent falling behind in reading skills.
- Visit Your Nearest Teacher Supply Store- At your nearest teacher supply store you can find reading comprehension workbooks as well as math workbooks. Have your child complete a couple worksheets a day, this will go along way toward helping them avoid falling behind in their reading and math skills.
- Take Trips To The Library- Visiting the library and reading there can provide a quite place of solace and can become a welcomed change of scenery which can foster an appetite for reading.
See Massive Improvements Through Martial Arts
Summer is the perfect time to help your child see massive improvements in their confidence and focus through martial arts training. Some parents find it difficult to fit martial arts training into their schedule during the school year due to homework and other activities that the kids are involved in. However, I think we all can agree on the value that improved focus and confidence will have academically in the school year to come. There is no better time, like summer to give them a huge jump start.
3 Ways Martial Arts Improves Focus
Here are 3 ways that martial arts improves focus.
- Techniques- as martial arts students begin to learn the vast array of martial arts techniques, the techniques themselves require lots of concentration. There is more than meets the eye when it comes to performing these techniques at a high level. At Quest Martial Arts, we emphasize the 4 Rules of Concentration to our students. The 4 rules are: focus your eyes, focus your ears, focus your body and focus your mind.
- Repetition- we all know that repetition is the “mother of all skill” and in martial arts, students spend lots of time practicing techniques over and over. Students quickly learn that repetition can be lots of fun and not boring.
- Mastery- one of the main benefits that students grain from martial arts training is mastery. The more you do something (correctly), the better and better you become at it. It’s like tying your shoe. As a 5 year, you weren’t very good at tying your shoes. But the more and more you did it, before long you became a master shoe tier. The same is true with practicing “focus”. Practice not only makes perfect, it also makes PERMANENT.
Simply put, when a child improves his or her ability to focus, they begin to do better at everything else in life. Quite naturally, the better you do at things, the more confident you become in your abilities. So improved confidence is a byproduct of improved focus.
One of my good friends, several years ago shared a quote with me that still rings loud in my memory today. He said: “life is a game of time and seasons, you have to maximize your time to fulfill your season.” The question I leave with you is this- how are you going to maximize your child’s time this summer, to help them fulfill the upcoming 2017-2018 school season?