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Message from the SEE Project Director

What I Did on My Summer Vacation!

Many of you may remember an exercise that teachers use to engage students when they return from summer break. It is a writing activity designed to get students back into the school's learning process while focusing on the fond, fun memories they may have of their summer vacations. Teachers know that, over the summer, students lose some of the information they learned during their past school year, so they begin to re-engage the students by focusing on their recent summer activities.

Wouldn’t it be great if children around the country would write about the Science & Everyday Experiences (SEE) projects they were involved in during their summer vacation? As SEE stakeholders, how can we have that impact on the youth in our communities? What enrichment and child development activities can we sponsor through our churches and community organizations? Here is some food for thought as summer begins for the children in your community: SEE can make an enriching summer experience! It can help parents and caregivers plan activities to help children retain and obtain new information over the vacation.

The At Home With Math kit from TERC, Inc., is a wonderful resource for use at home and on vacation with younger students, aged 5 -11. It has a mathematics activity, "When Should We Leave?" that helps the student compute the time it will take to drive from home to a vacation location. Use this and other games in the kit to engage children in fun learning activities. Visit the TERC website and download the activities for your summer or year-round use.

Use your home or library computer and go to other child-friendly websites such as the Learning Enrichment section of Sites such as these provide ideas for engaging the mind, body, and soul of the children in your charge. They present ideas for improving writing skills, learning math at home, preparing for science fairs and using parent-child activities to help ward off boredom while making the summer fun.

Here are some other suggestions for summer activities and for reinforcing the classroom learning experience:

  • Vacation Bible School SEE activities,
  • Visits to an IMAX Theatre,
  • Visits to science museums,
  • Summer carnivals at churches and other venues,
  • Nature walks, and
  • SEE activities at your family reunion.

The list can go on and on. The message is to turn off the television and turn on the sense of adventure and learning for the young person in your charge. The fun learning activities you create for children in the summer may encourage the budding of a new scientist in the family.

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