Summer Resources

2021 PK-12 Summer Activity/Learning Suggestions for Parents/Students

Learning happens all the time, not just during school. The intention of summer practice is to integrate school learning into home life. This can be done through playful activities that also reinforce academic skills, in a relaxed family environment. Given the COVID situation, we have added more online opportunities for learning over the summer. Wishing you a restful and restorative summer!

Early Childhood

Resources for Gecko, Iguana, & Kindergarten Parents

  • Enjoy Time in Nature
    Explore the wonderful wild spaces in our valley, enjoy nature walks, bike rides, morning hikes, trips to the beach, and time in your yard or neighborhood.
  • Real Work
    Children delight in real work. Include your child in cooking projects, sorting things, helping to set the table, washing dishes with warm soapy water, caring for a pet, working in your garden, washing windows, fixing something.
  • Open-Ended Play
    Help create a space in your house for your child to explore materials that offer many possibilities. Allow time for your child to engage in deep imaginative play, drawing, painting, and creating.
  • Read
    Enjoy reading books with your child on a daily basis. Audible books are a great option too!
    5 Tips for Introducing Audio Books to Your Toddler or Preschooler
  • Cultivate Independence – If you know that your child is capable of something, give them the space to do it for themselves. Let them manage their own shoes or change clothes when possible. Create spaces in your house where your child can successfully access and put away their own belongings.
    Readiness for PK/K/1st grade
  • Read
    Enjoy reading books with your child on a daily basis. Audible books are a great option too!
    5 Tips for Introducing Audio Books to Your Toddler or Preschooler
  • Cultivate Independence
    Support your child with independence, allowing them to manage their own shoes or change clothes when possible. Create spaces in your house where your child can successfully access and put away their own belongings.
  • Play Simple Games Together
    Play cards, connect four, puzzles, pattern work, memory, guess who, i-spy, 20 questions, car bingo, and cooperative games.
    familypastimes.com
    coopboardgames.com
  • Enjoy Time in Nature
    Explore the wonderful wild spaces in our valley, enjoy nature walks, bike rides, morning hikes, trips to the beach, and time in your yard or neighborhood.
  • Real Work
    Children delight in real work. Include your child in cooking projects, sorting things, helping to set the table, washing dishes with warm soapy water, caring for a pet, working in your garden, washing windows, fixing something.
    Readiness for PK/K/1st grade

Elementary

Resources for Elementary Students, Grades 1-5

  • Read, Read, Read!
    Read to your child before bedtime, have books out and available, including early readers if they are ready. Repeat the same book that they love over and over until you and your child can recite it by heart. Then read it backwards, word by word! Listening to audio books can also be an enjoyable exposure to literature.
  • Play Letter & Number Games
    For example, ask your child to guess a letter that you draw on their back. Play Go-Fish with number cards and alphabet cards. Form letters with your bodies. Look for letters and numbers on signs or license plates, or search for shapes in nature, in the clouds, or anywhere you go!
  • Play with Sounds (Phonemic Awareness)
    Auditory games help children understand how language is made up of sounds and is an important pre-reading skill. You can play word games, “I’m thinking of a word that rhymes with ____.” Have your child guess a word that you sound out slowly (“ssssssuuuuuunnnnnn”). Have a “Sound” scavenger hunt. Give children a bag and ask them to find as many things around the house that begin with a certain sound.
    Click here for more phonemic awareness games
  • Invite Your Child to Write
    Have blank journals and books available. Support them to sound out stories, grocery lists, recipes, and more. It’s important for children to be able to sound out words independently without worrying about “correct” spelling.
  • Math Is Everywhere if You Look For It!
    Patterning, counting, adding, subtracting, measuring, and sorting are all important concepts in math and can be practiced in daily activities such as setting the table, baking, cooking, building, and woodworking. Counting games, card games, and board games also allow your child to learn and practice these important math skills.
  • Cultivate Self-regulation & Self-care
    Help your children to help themselves. If you know that they are capable of something, give them the space to do it for themselves. Let them manage their own shoes and backpacks when possible. Create spaces in your house where your child can successfully access and put away their own belongings.
  • Foster the Ability to Be in a Group
    Being at school means that children are obliged to balance group needs with their own needs. At times they need to be able to move at someone else’s timetable, stay together with a group, listen to and follow instructions. You could practice moving through transitions such as leaving a store or a playdate at a certain time, or cleaning up all together after dinner.
  • Encourage Your Child to Make Mistakes & Take Risks
    Emphasize that not knowing is the first step to learning. Let them see you make mistakes.
  • Family & Nature Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
    Readiness for PK/K/1st grade

Online Resources

Language Arts:

  • Download the Khan Academy Kids app. This is a free educational game that reviews PK-K language arts and math skills.
  • Readworks: Sign up for a free parent account so your child can access online digital passages to keep reading/listening over the summer:

Math (Khan Academy Math Review):

  • Read, Read, Read!
    Read to your child before bedtime, have books out and available, including early readers if they are ready. Repeat the same book that they love over and over until you and your child can recite it by heart. Then read it backwards, word by word! Listening to audio books can also be an enjoyable exposure to literature.
  • Play Letter & Number Games
    For example, ask your child to guess a letter that you draw on their back. Play Go-Fish with number cards and alphabet cards. Form letters with your bodies. Look for letters and numbers on signs or license plates, or search for shapes in nature, in the clouds, or anywhere you go!
  • Play with Sounds (Phonemic Awareness)
    Auditory games help children understand how language is made up of sounds and is an important pre-reading skill. You can play word games, “I’m thinking of a word that rhymes with ____.” Have your child guess a word that you sound out slowly (“ssssssuuuuuunnnnnn”). Have a “Sound” scavenger hunt. Give children a bag and ask them to find as many things around the house that begin with a certain sound.
    Click here for more phonemic awareness games
  • Invite Your Child to Write
    Have blank journals and books available. Support them to sound out stories, grocery lists, recipes, and more. It’s important for children to be able to sound out words independently without worrying about “correct” spelling.
  • Math Is Everywhere if You Look For It!
    Patterning, counting, adding, subtracting, measuring, and sorting are all important concepts in math and can be practiced in daily activities such as setting the table, baking, cooking, building, and woodworking. Counting games, card games, and board games also allow your child to learn and practice these important math skills.
  • Cultivate Self-regulation & Self-care
    Help your children to help themselves. If you know that they are capable of something, give them the space to do it for themselves. Let them manage their own shoes and backpacks when possible. Create spaces in your house where your child can successfully access and put away their own belongings.
  • Foster the Ability to Be in a Group
    Being at school means that children are obliged to balance group needs with their own needs. At times they need to be able to move at someone else’s timetable, stay together with a group, listen to and follow instructions. You could practice moving through transitions such as leaving a store or a playdate at a certain time, or cleaning up all together after dinner.
  • Encourage Your Child to Make Mistakes & Take Risks
    Emphasize that not knowing is the first step to learning. Let them see you make mistakes.
  • Family & Nature Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!

Online Resources

Access our Kindergarten Google Classroom to complete projects that your child did not have a chance to finish during the school year. (Class code: fgytbvj.)

Language Arts:

  • Download the Khan Academy Kids app. This is a free educational game that reviews PK-K language arts and math skills.
  • Readworks: Sign up for a free parent account so your child can access online digital passages to keep reading/listening over the summer:

Math (Khan Academy Math Review):

  • Read, Read, Read!
    Read by yourself, read to your teddy bear, read to your parents, read to your brothers and sisters.
  • Write, Write, Write!
    Write lists. Write letters to real people or to story characters. Write make- believe stories. Write secret messages. Write facts about your favorite animal and make a diagram with labels. Write descriptions of places or objects or even of your pet. Write about your hopes and dreams.
  • Portable Word Wall
    Have your child use the provided portable word wall whenever they write (letter, in a journal, making a list, etc.)
  • Sight Words
    Practice reading and writing your sight words.
  • Summer Writing Journal
    Keep a summer writing journal for trips, stories, poems, nature observations, your feelings, etc.
  • Talk about the books you are reading and share your writings with others. Remember that we writers and readers appreciate an audience!
  • Have regular family reading times.
  • Listen to audio books.
  • Look into student magazines like Ranger Rick, Cricket, Spiders, etc.
  • Take nature walks. Record the sketches you draw and observations you make in a nature journal.
  • Practice counting coins, making change, telling time to hour and half hour (with an analog clock).
  • Play number dice games (Snakes & Ladders, etc.)
  • Play number games with cards (Allowance, Monopoly, More (like War but flipping two cards to find the sum)
  • Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • Look at face clocks to continue learning time to the hour and half hour and in five-minute intervals.
  • Practice basic math facts (addition and subtraction to 20) in fun ways such as with playing cards and with dice.
  • Create opportunities to identify and count coins.
  • Play hangman (we call it, ‘put the baby to bed’ where you must guess the correct word or else the baby wakes up!) to sharpen your spelling skills. Have them think of a word while you guess and then switch roles.

Online Resources

Language Arts:

  • Read Works
    Sign up for a free parent account so your child can access online digital passages to keep reading/listening over the summer.
  • VC Library Online
    Access the Ventura County Library eLibrary where you can download apps like Cloud Library to find free downloadable audiobooks and ebooks.The VC eLibrary page also provides links to numerous other free online reading resources.

Math (Khan Academy Math Review):

  • Read, Read, Read!
    Daily reading fiction and nonfiction/discuss what you read with a family member. You may want to practice reading on Raz-Kids, your account will be accessible all summer (contact Serra, if you want to level up!).
  • Write, Write, Write!
    Weekly writing such as a story, report, letter, poem, song, play, comic, journal entry, etc. Write a review of a restaurant, book, game, movie, etc. Practice typing on your school Typing Club account.
  • Math
    Practice with real life math problems such as measuring, money, time, addition, subtraction, etc. Do your Math Box card activities. Khan Academy math practice online such as Get Ready for 4th Grade.
  • Create
    Freebuild with Legos, create a Junk Trunk project, design something, do an art project, etc.
  • Connect
    Stay connected with peers by phone or video calls, writing letters, etc.
  • Family & Nature Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • Read, Read, Read!
    Daily, with a few visits to the bookstore or local library (online or in person) to retain reading skills and a love of reading. Join a kids’ book club (some of you already have one). Keep a log of your reading to show next year’s teacher. If you enjoyed When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr, you might want to try one of the two sequels – Bombs on Aunt Dainty and/or A Small Person Far Away. You may want to practice reading on Raz-Kids. Your account will be accessible all summer (email me, Louise, if you want to level up!)
  • Write, Write, Write!
    Keep a journal, write letters to friends and family, write stories, poems and songs. Become a pen pal with a cousin or friend who lives far away. Work in your cursive journal until it is complete. Collect delicious words that you can add to your mini-journal for next year. You will use this same book in fifth grade. Keep practicing your keyboarding skills on Typing Club.
  • Math
    Practice multiplication facts through the twelves. Practice telling time in context and as needed. Practice using money in real-life situations.


Go to Khan Academy for math review:

  • Subtraction with regrouping
  • Multiplying 2-digit numbers
  • Division algorithm
  • Introduction to Decimals
  • Rewriting fractions as decimals
  • Adding fractions with like denominators
  • Organization
    When you buy classroom materials for fifth grade, have your child involved in the process, and familiar with the materials he/she brings in on the first day of school. Now is the time to think about your best working environment at home and set that space up with all the tools you need. This can work for doing projects at home, doing home-school connections, and/or working in a remote situation if that becomes a necessity.
  • Social Studies & Science
    Museums are starting to open up again, and there are annual field trips that we were not able to get to this year because of closures. Some suggestions of field trips: Santa Barbara Mission to see where Karana (The Lone Woman of San Nicolas Island) is buried; Channel Islands National Park visitor center in Ventura Harbor; California Oil Museum in Santa Paula. Have your child try to identify primary and secondary sources during museum visits.
  • Social Skills
    Have play dates (actual or virtual) with different OGS students over the summer, especially next year’s fifth graders (kids your child doesn’t usually play with).
  • Joy
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!

Middle School

Resources for Middle School, Grades 6-8

  • Read, Read, Read! (Required Reading)
    Use this link to choose at least ONE chapter book to read and be ready to work on a Book Talk in class the first week of school (so the book needs to be read!)
  • Summer Bridge
    We would highly suggest a summer curriculum such as Summer Bridge to keep up with academic skills.
  • Summer Journal
    Keep a journal and record your summer experiences, write poetry, jot down life questions, reflect on what you are grateful for.
  • Listen to Audio Books
  • Go to Khan Academy for math review!
  • Read, Read, Read! (Required Reading)
    Please read AT LEAST one book by an American author, as our historical focus will be American History. Here is a Link to American Historical Novels with some suggestions but please use your own discretion when reviewing books! Please have completed your book and be ready to do a book talk on your novel when we return to school in the fall (the instructions for the talk will be given during our first week).
  • Summer Bridge
    In these unprecedented times, we would highly suggest a summer curriculum such as Summer Bridge 6-7th grade to keep up with academic skills.
  • Grammar Skills
    Students have a Quill.org account for grammar specific skills.
  • Math
    Khan Academy Math UNIT: Get Ready for 7th Grade or a review of 6th grade math concepts using a Summer Bridge Program.
  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • Read, Read, Read! (Required Reading)
    Please read AT LEAST one book by an American author, as our historical focus will be American History. Here is a Link to American Historical Novels with some suggestions but please use your own discretion when reviewing books! Please have completed your book and be ready to do a book talk on your novel when we return to school in the fall (the instructions for the talk will be given during our first week).
  • Summer Bridge
    In these unprecedented times, we would highly suggest a summer curriculum such as Summer Bridge 7th-8th grade to keep up with academic skills.
  • Grammar Skills
    Students have a Quill.org account for grammar specific skills.
  • Math
    Khan Academy Math UNIT: Get Ready for 8th Grade or a review of 7th grade math concepts using a Summer Bridge Program.
  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!

High School

Resources for High School, Grades 9-12

  • Read, Read, Read! (Required Reading)
    Your required summer reading and books of your own choice. Go on family trips to bookstores and libraries; talk about books; share your favorite books.
  • Math
    Khan academy for math review (8th grade math concepts) or a math Summer Bridge Program.
  • Grammar Skills
    Students have a Quill.org account for grammar specific skills.
  • Science
    Read about current events related to science and technology. Here are some suggested news sources, or download their associated apps!

  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • Current Events
    Keep up with current events by reading the newspaper (online or on paper), listening to NPR, or using the news source of your choice.
  • Read, Read, Read! (Required Reading)
    Your required summer reading and books of your own choice. Go on family trips to bookstores and libraries; talk about books; share your favorite books.
  • Spanish
    See and hear what you’ve learned come to life by watching movies and series in the original Spanish. Practice Quizlet sets from chapters 1 through 5.
  • Math
    Khan academy for math review (Algebra 1 concepts).
  • Science
    Read about current events related to science and technology. Here are some suggested news sources, or download their associated apps!

  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • Current Events
    Keep up with current events by reading the newspaper (online or on paper), listening to NPR, or using the news source of your choice.
  • Read, Read, Read!
    Your required summer reading and books of your own choice.) Go on family trips to bookstores and libraries; talk about books; share your favorite books.
  • Spanish
    See and hear what you’ve learned come to life by watching movies and series in the original Spanish. Practice Quizlet sets from chapters 1-10.
  • Math
    Khan academy for math review (Algebra 2 concepts).
  • Science
    Read about current events related to science and technology. Here are some suggested news sources, or download their associated apps!

  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!
  • History
    If any students are preparing for the SAT Subject tests in History, Khan Academy and Crash Course are both great free resources.
  • Current Events
    Keep up with current events by reading the newspaper (online or on paper), listening to NPR, or using the news source of your choice.
  • Read, Read, Read!
    Your required summer reading and books of your own choice. Go on family trips to bookstores and libraries; talk about books; share your favorite books.
  • Math
    Khan academy for math review (Precalculus concepts).
  • Life After High School
    Talk about life after high school. Visit colleges and workplaces.
  • College Application Essays!
    Review the Common App Prompts and UC Personal Insight Questions, and support your student in writing over the summer.
  • Spanish
    See and hear what you’ve learned come to life by watching movies and series in the original Spanish. Practice Quizlet sets from chapters 1-15.
  • Science
    Read about current events related to science and technology. Here are some suggested news sources, or download their associated apps!

  • History
    If any students are preparing for the SAT Subject tests in History, Khan Academy and Crash Course are both great free resources.
  • “Needs-Nothing” Time
    Schedule lots of “needs-nothing” time, with open space and no agenda. The summer is a time to connect as a family in a relaxed environment, enjoying being together!

Parents

Parent summer read

The Big DisconnectThe Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age
by Catherine Steiner-Adair

  • Please read the first couple of chapters and then the chapters that align with the age and stage of your child(ren).

Clinical psychologist Catherine Steiner-Adair takes an in-depth look at how the Internet and the digital revolution are profoundly changing childhood and family dynamics, and offers solutions parents can use to successfully shepherd their children through the technological wilderness.