Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.
A couple of months ago we brought home our third child…Miss Adalyn Faith. Her big brother and big sister were very excited to see her and all of us could not wait to bring her home and join our already established little circus. She has fit in quite nicely.
For the nine months I carried her, I was hoping I hadn’t forgotten how to take care of a little one again. Her big sister is seven and her big brother is nine so needless to say, I was worried we would be a little rusty in changing diapers, figuring out the different cries, and doing the late night feedings.
But, you know what? We weren’t and I was pleasantly surprised! Although, the late night feedings are a little rough, but when are they not? We like our sleep around here!
For the most part, it all came rolling back to us and so far we have kept her alive and well. She seems pretty pleased with her situation here.
I think she’s decided she will stick around. Lucky for us! She’s a pretty good baby so we have decided to stop at her. We finally got a baby who understands the importance of sleep…to her and to her parents.
Those other two were killers!
My husband and I will look at her little face while she’s sleeping and wonder if she’s just really good or is it because she is our third and she knows she has to do her part around here to stay alive.
Probably a combination of both, right?
Okay, what does this have to do with literacy, right? Bear with me because during a late night feeding this analogy popped into my mind and it was brilliant at the time!
So, we all have heard the words Summertime Slump, right? It’s the dreaded brain-clearing of all of our school aged kids during the monthe of June, July, and August, right? They forget anything and everything they have ever learned prior to these months! It’s the time when we see all the Summer Bridge workbooks crack open and pages are frantically done daily in hopes that not all prior learning will seep out of his ears and our kid doesn’t return to school a completely blank slate!
Yeah, that dramatic Summertime Slump.
Well, we’re here to tell you, don’t buy into the hype.
Please don’t. Here’s why.
Do you know why it wasn’t a huge adjustment to bring a baby home even after seven years?
Because, like most homes, we were already in parent mode. We had already succumbed to the fact that our lives were not our own anymore. Ten years ago, we made the decision that for the next twenty some years we would be feeding kids, cleaning up after them, and wiping their behinds.
What was one more mouth to feed and one more behind to wipe?
Our home was already positioned for parenting and raising kids. Little Addie was able to fold into our daily life easily and we have loved every second of our newest addition!
Now here is where these two concepts hopefully come together. Just like baby Adalyn was able to easily join our already established circus, the dreaded Summertime Slump will not happen if your home is already formed around learning.
Learning that lifetime learners do…not workbook learning.
Summer is the perfect time for more books, more trips to the ball park and museums, vacations to experience new things, writing letters to friends and family, cooking meals together…the list of authentic learning can go on and on.
That type of learning is so much better than workbook learning!
Did you know that giving kids twelve books to read over the summer is as effective as summer school in raising reading scores? (Richard Allington)
Just plain reading books, y’all!
So parents unite and let’s throw away the summer workbooks and let’s do some authentic learning this summer! Our kids will not show up a blank slate to school come August or September!
Next week we will talk about setting up your house for raising lifelong learners to avoid the Summertime Slump. I bet you will see your house is already established to do just that!
And have another kid!
Or am I?