About a year ago, a Dutch study showed that, even in ideal circumstances, COVID closures meant learning loss. So this past week’s news of COVID-related learning loss among American students was no surprise. The drop was greatest among those who spent the most time in virtual school, which included a high proportion of disadvantaged students.
Meantime, we’re heading into the time of year when learning loss is also common: the summer slide. While summertime provides a welcome break and time to relax from the demands of formal learning, it often means a marked loss of educational opportunities that reinforce and keep building upon what was learned in the previous academic year.
But the summer slide isn’t inevitable.
Creating Opportunities for Kids to Learn through Fun
While doom-and-gloom headlines can make any of us feel helpless, the reality is that we have the power to change things. We can make it so, come August, kids are ready to pick up where they left off at school – and have fun doing it.
For instance, parents can make a conscious effort to provide educational opportunities for their kids in ways that can involve the whole family. From library, park, and museum outings to game nights and imaginative play at home, there’s no shortage of experiential activities that parents and kids can enjoy together. Tip sheets like this and this can help you start brainstorming ideas for your family.
Of course, time and budget can sometimes be issues. That’s where collaborating with other parents you know can really be helpful. Pooling and sharing resources also provides kids with a great model of cooperation and community!
Another tool parents have is our Empower program, which combines cognitive learning about brain science with physical movement and social/emotional learning. The yoga gets kids active, while the mindfulness activities nurture empathy, community, self-regulation/control, and more – skills that, notably, support academic achievement, as well.
Check out this sample Empower lesson, in which hosts Mandy B and her dog Junebug explore, embody, and educate about social bonding and how a natural brain hormone, oxytocin, helps us feel good and connect with one another:
This module is followed by a mindful yoga flow that includes a favorite Yoga Calm activity, Back Drawing:
You can learn much more about Empower here.
Expand Your Horizons by Getting Certified over the Summer
Teachers and counselors can also have fun learning this summer with our Online Certification Bundle. If you’re new to Yoga Calm, it will give you in-depth training and a set of skills and practices you can take back into the classroom come August.
And if you’re already familiar with Yoga Calm, certification can deepen your knowledge and enrich your teaching by adding to your mindful movement toolkit.
Through certification, you can earn college credit or CEUs – even create new career opportunities for yourself. You also get a wealth of benefits: free access to hundreds of lesson plans, online courses and over 50 training videos; product discounts with Prana, Lululemon, Lucy, Gaiam, and many other companies; ongoing professional support; and much more!
Best of all, use the coupon code WELLNESS when you register, and you save $85, just like that!
Meantime, your own commitment to ongoing learning provides another great model for kids – a reminder that learning doesn’t only happen in the classroom. It’s something we can pursue anytime, anywhere, continually enriching our lives.