Big Ideas Math Summer Solutions

As Alice Cooper sang, “Schools out for Summer…”, but as parents we worry about our child retaining all the mathematical knowledge they gained during the course of the school year.

Big Ideas Learning has provided a free online resource to assist your child in preparing for the upcoming school year. You and your child can access our Skills Review Handbook online. This handbook has full color pages that provide examples and practice of concepts from prior grades. Below we have identified those Topics that should be reviewed in preparation for the upcoming year.

[To access the Skills Review Handbook, use the link above or click here.]

For incoming 6th grade students, the following topics are necessary prerequisite concepts:

Topic 1.1                    Topic 1.3
Topic 1.4                    Topic 2.3
Topic 4.1                    Topic 4.2
Topic 6.1                    Topic 6.2
Topic 8.4                    Topic 9.2
Topic 11.2                  Topic 12.2
Topic 16.2                  Topic 17.3

For incoming 7th grade students, all of the above 6th grade topics plus the following:

Topic 3.1                    Topic 3.2
Topic 5.4                    Topic 6.3
Topic 6.4                    Topic 8.2
Topic 8.3                    Topic 9.3
Topic 9.4                    Topic 10.2
Topic 10.3                  Topic 11.1
Topic 11.3                  Topic 15.1
Topic 17.2                  Topic 18.2

For incoming 8th grade students, all of the 6th and 7th grade topics plus the following:

Topic 4.3                    Topic 4.4
Topic 5.2                    Topic 13.1
Topic 14.2                  Topic 16.1
Topic 18.3                  Topic 19.3
Topic 20.5

Note to teachers: Please feel free to share this resource with your students and parents for the upcoming summer break.

Preventing the “Summer Slide”

As summer quickly approaches, students and teachers are looking forward to some relaxation, rest, perhaps a vacation, and extra time outdoors. However, what effect do the months away from school have on students? It’s something commonly called the “summer slide.”

The “summer slide” refers to the loss of learning retention over the summer months when students’ minds may be idle or out of practice. Many students will spend more time on the computer, playing video games, or watching television, and much less time reading and maintaining skills that were acquired during the school year.

So, how can we prevent “summer slide?” There are many easy tips and activities to slip in to a regular summer day that will provide practice without seeming like “work.” (Who wants to do worksheets over the summer? No one.) As a teacher, maybe you write up a brief letter to parents about “summer slide” and include a few of the following ideas. If you’re a parent, then you’re already in the right place!

The internet is full of resources and ideas on the subject, but here are a few favorites for you to try:

1) Plan and cook meals together. Discuss measurements, ingredients, cooking styles, and see what yummy recipes you can whip up!

2) Take a hike outdoors and make note of the various trees, flowers, and other vegetation. Collect some leaves or flowers and research what each one is when you get back home.

3) Play a game that requires a new skill (any new learning is good learning!) or make up a new game.

4) Read aloud to each other, taking turns, at least once a week (more often if possible), whether from a favorite book, newspaper, or comics. All reading is beneficial.

5) Make a weekly estimation jar using beans, peanuts, elbow macaroni, pocket change, jellybeans, or whatever you have around the house. Have each member of your family write down their guess, then count up the items and see which guess was closest. The prize could be anything from an ice cream cone to extra TV time.

6) Visit a museum or library and explore the exhibits/books together.

7) Write a story together. Come up with an idea, decide on characters and a plot, and take turns writing parts of the story. The end result will be creative and more than likely entertaining.

8) This one is the easiest: Talk to your kids. It sounds simple, but in the fast-paced, busy world we live in, it’s something that gets forgotten. Your kids learn more from you and talking to adults than watching TV or playing video games. Tell them a story from your childhood, ask them questions about their interests, or come up with goofy “What if you had to choose between…” questions to spark some conversation.

Do you have any to add to the list? What is your favorite summer learning activity?