The time between the end of school and the start of school is a long time. And while these months should be full of fun and excitement, they can also be full of learning. In fact, whoever said learning can’t be fun? Chances are you already providing loads of learning opportunities with your kids, without even being aware of it. If you’re not sure, here are five tips for summer learning for kids.

Keep it natural

If all of a sudden you stop your kids when they are in the middle of fun, creative play, to do worksheets, then chances are they won’t be too happy about it. The best learning happens when it is a natural part of play. And play is what kids do best. Start the day with an idea or two to guide your kids towards. For younger kids, make a game of finding letters on signs as you run errands. For older kids, talk to them about possible inventions for routine tasks. Keep learning tasks age-appropriate and based on creativity. The point is to have kids want to learn, not resent it.

Keep reading

Reading is one of the best ways for summer learning for kids. Start the summer by making a visit to your local library. Sign up for the summer reading club, which may include activities and prizes. Also, check if there is an adult’s reading club. Leading by example is so important.

Find the science in everything

Depending on your child’s age, start looking for science in things. At your local play center, check out the shapes and angles needed to build climbing structures. Use physics equations for velocity and distance to figure out the best way to play. Science is all around us. The deeper we look into it, the more fun it becomes.

Set goals

One of the best ways to promote summer learning for kids is to get your kids involved. Ask them what they want to learn about. Maybe they really want to discover more about dinosaurs. Perhaps they want to learn about space. Set up fun activities like digging for fossils or set up a telescope to look at the stars. Kids want to learn. It’s up to parents to foster this need.

Check out a museum

There are many local museums that are free or very low cost. Chances are you’ve walked by your town’s local museum without thinking twice. This summer, go into it. Check out the exhibits and learn about local history and the culture around you. Museums will often have special events, especially summer ones geared towards kids. Find out what is happening and plan your day around these events. There’s a lot to discover in museums.