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Keep Learning Skills Sharp This Summer

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(KYTX) -- It's called "the summer slide." Most of the year your child is in the classroom-- but on summer break-- academics slide down the priority list. CBS19's Jaime Gerik shares why parents should encourage educational opportunities. 

Natalie Allen's 3rd grader is enrolled in summer reading camp at Jack Elementary in Tyler.

"You don't always want to read over the summer. You want to go outside and play, but this is a fun way to incorporate reading," Allen, a Tyler parent, said.

Allen believes a camp like the one organized by the Junior League of Tyler is the way to go.  They get to socialize with friends.

 "Some of the kids this morning were recognizing kids they saw from school," Allen said.

More importantly, they keep up their reading skills.

"Sometimes it's easy to be in kind of a video game, TV mode, and we want to keep them interested in reading even though it's summer," Allison O'Neal, Co-Chairman of the Summer Reading Camp, said.

According to the National Summer Learning Association, slacking off during the break has consequences. Most students lose two months of grade-level math skills over the summer.

"They go back to school in late August, and they will have lost some ground," Nancy Crawford, Executive Director of the Literacy Council of Tyler, said.

It's the same principle with adults who are learning at the Literacy Council.

 "When we first started 23 years ago we took the summer off and we saw the mistake of that, we've never taken another summer off," Crawford said.

Educators recommend continuing to read with your child on a regular basis, going on educational outings, and limiting time in front of screens. Some exceptions- if they are using the Kindle or iPad to read.
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