I keep getting PR pitches about the “summer slide”. You know, the idea that by our kids having a measly 9 weeks off of school is going to break their brains? That all that great knowledge they got last year — over the other 40-something weeks — will disappear if we don’t spend our lazy summer days engaging in educational tasks?
This theory? I guess it’s supposed to frighten the bathing suits right off our backs. But I refuse to buy in. This mom is riding the summer slide — no hands!
Sure, my kids will continue to write “stories”. When they’re inspired to. (Or when they get in trouble and have to be separated from each other. So, come to think of it, maybe we will get some good writing practice in.) And we’ll continue to read each night. Because that’s just what we do. (At least that’s what we will do now that UCLA finally sealed their place in history with a College World Series sweep.)
But you know what we’re going to spend our days doing? Playing baseball. And soccer. And football. (Believe it or not, sports have taught my kids way more about math than I ever could.) Seeing how far we can swim before taking a breath. (Building confidence doesn’t require a pencil.) Road tripping. (So far we’ve discussed the California Missions, witnessed the wonders of farming, and used math to answer the age old question of “Are we there yet?”) Exploring. (Beaches, museums, our outrageously messy closets…)
Yes, we’re going to embrace the way-too-short summer and focus on fun. There’s no way my kids won’t learn along the way. That’s simply the nature of being a kid.
And, if you ask me, they don’t get enough time to just be kids. School is intense. The pressure to get ahead — and stay there — is intense. Too intense for my sensitive little souls. And their sensitive mama.
So this summer, my kids will be studying life. By getting out there and living it. And if I seem to be missing from the blog now and then, you’ll know where to find me. Right there beside them.
What do you think? Are you fending off the summer slide or riding it?