Summer is a time to enjoy the beautiful weather, play outside, ride your bike, go swimming, and participate in any of the numerous activities so many enjoy.  But it’s also the time for students to make sure they maintain their level of proficiency in reading and math between now and next school year.

Highland Elementary Principal Chris Trostad says it’s important to read about 20 to 30 minutes a day to maintain the same reading ability before next school year.  “It’s really important to read 20 to 30 minutes each night still,” said Trostad.  “Rainy days are a great time to read and do those types of things.  If we can keep a focus on reading in the summertime, it really is nice when those kids come in where they left off.   Then next year they’re not so far behind.”

Trostad added that finding books your child is interested in can help them stay engaged in reading, while not reading throughout the summer can put students behind for up to half the school year. “I want to remind parents that it’s important that kids are reading all summer long,” said Trostad.  “The public library is open, so definitely want them to access the library.  If you can find books that they are really interested in that’s a big key to getting kids to read.  Maintaining over the summer is perfect.  Sometimes we have kids do what we call the summer slide where they don’t do anything, and it can end up taking us until Christmas time to get them back up where they were at the end of the last school year.”

The Crookston Public Library also wants to help Crookston’s kids keep up with their reading during the summer.  Library Chris Boike says the library has more prizes than ever before as part of their Explore! Summer Library Experience. “As always this summer we have our summer library experience program,” said Boike. “The theme is, explore again with an emphasis on outer space or space exploration.  The basic idea is getting kids to read every day by promoting a lot of great prizes were going to give away this summer.  We’ve probably got more prizes this summer than we ever have which is kind of fun because it provides an even greater incentive to read.  They can stop by and get their reading logs already.  The more they read, the better their chance of winning prizes, especially the bigger prizes.”

Students at Crookston Public Schools are also able to use an online subscription to IXL to remember their basic math facts throughout the summer. “We subscribe to the IXL math.  It has every stand from kindergarten all the way up through 12th grade.  Our kids all have a subscription for that so they can get onto IXL math,” said Trostad.  “If you have troubles, you can get ahold of us here at Highland School.  That’s a great thing also for rainy days and keeping up on those math skills.  Basic math facts, you can find things online for that, but that would be one where we tend to spend a lot of time reteaching basic math facts for multiplication, division, adding, and subtracting.  We want the kids to have a summer and have plenty of time to run around and play, but if we can continue that reading and work on those math facts, it only helps those kids.  When they come back, they aren’t so far behind, and it makes math and reading years.  That’s what we’re after.”