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Summer Packet Helps Retain Learning

July 14, 2009

I teach a 4th grade math class with low achieving students, so summer work is critical. I give them a packet that contains all of the topics we covered throughout the year. Each section has specific directions and examples so the parents can also understand the concepts. Since the packet is large, I suggest to the students that they work on those areas in which they feel they needed the most support. I also assure them that if they did only one page per day over the summer, amounting to about 15 minutes each day, they would walk into 5th grade with confidence. Any student returning his/her packet to me in September earns a small prize.

I also strongly encourage students to practice their multiplication math facts, an area of weakness for most. From the beginning of the school year, I tell them to practice the ones that they have difficulty with, mainly the 6, 7, and 8's. One strategy that makes it fun is to use the "B's." This means...take a few flash cards with your facts and practice them in Bed, in the Back seat of the car, at Breakfast, with your Brother (or other sibling), and the the Bathroom. Keeping a few cards in those places and zipping through them for a few minutes each day can really make a difference.


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