Ah… summer...(contented sigh…)

That glorious time of year which lulls even the most dedicated of scholars into blissful indifference. Now that June is almost over, and with it, our home-school year, our energetic young caterpillars have officially shut down their brains for the season.

Well…not really; but sort of.

At the close of every school year, I try to take stock of our educational journey and feebly attempt to learn from my mistakes, efforts, and the myriad distractions sprinkled throughout our studies. While the school year inevitably seems to fly by–no matter how hard I plan–I try to focus on the main subjects: you know–the three “R’s”: Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmetic, and maybe a little Science and History–and not stress too much over the uncompleted science project, or the art “thing” that was started months ago and never finished.

Our three boys have just completed the first, second, and fourth grades, and I still marvel at how much they have managed to absorb since kindergarten. Most importantly, I try to grasp the concept that education is essentially a day to day process: a life-long series of events and experiences culminating into–hopefully–a recipe for spiritual, emotional, and academic success.

For example: I turn my youngest’s interest in helping out in the kitchen into an impromptu science class.

Or my ten-year-old’s fascination with the great outdoors–into an opportunity for creativity and exploration.

And then there’s my eight-year-old: who would park himself with his tablet for days, if I let him–I encourage creative games that promote problem solving and reading skills…and then I have to limit his screen-time so he doesn’t fry his brain.

Basically any constructive summer activity can be transformed into a learning experience; not to mention quality moments with your children…moments that come once in a “blue moon”.

Summer may be–for the majority of students–the age-old annual retreat from the dreary academics of the school year. But who said school had to be “dreary”? And who said summer was officially “time off from learning”?

Don’t get me wrong. I love summer. And summer break. And as a teacher, I look forward to it every year–even more so than my boys do. Guaranteed.

Still, I love to see my kids just as excited to learn new things and sink into good books as much as they enjoy jumping into their swim trunks before a dip in the pool or playing video games.

Right. Like that ever happens. LOL.

Yet here we are: recovering from the whirlwind of standardized testing and getting through those last few pages, and I can hardly believe that summer is upon us! I recently meandered into the local drug store to pick up some sweet tea; and there it was.

One end of the seasonal aisle replenished with–not the latest sunscreen and beach toys–but “back to school” items!!

Already?? What’s the world coming to?? At least give us a week or two of recovery!

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