Summer Enrichment Activities for Kids with Learning Challenges
Summer is almost here! We often get questions from parents about the types of activities children with learning disabilities should participate in during the summer. On the one hand, after 10 months of schooling…the idea of doing more academic work sounds like the worst, especially for kids who struggle with acquiring academic material. On the other hand, children with learning disabilities are at increased risk for regression of skills over the summer months. So, what to do?
It’s important to find a good balance between academic work and fun that will work for your child/adolescent. Summer should be a time where kids are able to get out and spend time doing things that they otherwise do not have the time/opportunity to do whether that be exploring their community, engaging in sports camps, creating art/music, spending time with friends/family, or learning a new skill that they are interested in learning. At the same time, it is also important to make sure that efforts are made to maintain skills gained over the last school year, and maybe even make some in-roads on the material that will be covered over the next school year. The degree to which time is divided between these two sets of activities will depend on the needs of the individual child.
The Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity has an article outlining some summer options and ideas. Harvard University’s Center on the Developing Child also has a series of guides describing various home-based activities that you can do to help your child develop skills around problem solving, organization, planning, and self-regulation.