Maintaining literacy skills over the school holidays

Guest article from our Corporate Social Responsibility Partner, the National Literacy Trust

With the summer holidays now here, children and parents alike are looking forward to a well-earned break from school, as well as time with friends and family.

Though everyone may be looking forward to some leisure time, teachers often notice a dip in their pupils' literacy skills when they return in the autumn. This holiday, we are hoping to encourage parents and carers to keep their children's reading, writing, speaking and listening skills maintained. The following ideas are simple things that you can do to support you children.

Whether you are spending time at home or going on holiday, there are plenty of easy and fun ways to stimulate your children's literacy improvement, while also allowing them a break from classroom-style work.

School holidays provide a unique opportunity for children to explore leisurely literary activities, and allow them the freedom to discover the styles of reading and writing they enjoy most.

If you're going away on holiday, there are plenty of ways to encourage your children's literacy development. First, have your children write letters or postcards to friends and family at home, as a way of strengthening their writing skills while still enjoying the excitements of travelling.

Additionally, holidays allow for time to read as a family�potentially reading aloud to your children, or simply alongside them. Parents are the most influential role models for their children, so this is a great opportunity for them to see you enjoying reading as well.

If you're planning to enjoy your holiday at home, don't forget that reading doesn't all have to be about books. Reading is everywhere�from cookbooks to game instructions�so when you sit down to play a new board game or try a new recipe, encourage your child to read them aloud with you.

A lot of fun and interactive ideas for both indoor and outdoor literacy activities can be found at www.wordsforlife.org.uk/come-rain-or-shine - these can also be used to ensure your child enters the coming school term prepared to grow and succeed.

And don't forget, though school stops for the summer, daily learning doesn't have to. Many Kumon study centres are open throughout the summer to keep your children on track with their learning, so they can hit the ground running in the new school term!

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