Summer learning activities to eliminate the summer slide

Summer learning activities to eliminate the summer slide

April 25, 2022Carol Chinea

As school is winding down, teachers are preparing summer learning activities and lessons for students to avoid the summer slide. We have compiled a list of helpful tips and premade lessons you can use with your students during summer school.

Whether you’re teaching in-person, online, or hybrid, these resources can be used in your classroom to support reducing summer learning loss. Nearpod offers a range of engaging activities and content that will keep your students focused, learning, and having fun during the break.

Interested in learning summer school strategies from a Nearpod team member? Check out a recording of our webinar, “5 Tips for Making Summer School Successful This Year” as we discuss simple ways to boost one’s summer school program through attracting teacher support, inspiring students, meeting extended learning requirements, and more! 

Why is summer learning important?

Summer learning provides students an opportunity to review academic content and ensure that previously learned material is not forgotten. 

Learning loss, or unfinished learning, continues to be a focus for teachers and administrators as we’re two years out from the pandemic and still assessing the impact it had on students and learning. We know educators are coming off another incredibly challenging year where they’ve had to face burnout and tech fatigue. Summer learning helps prevent the summer slide, and we have the resources and tools to make the process for you and your students as seamless as possible.

How can I keep students learning in the summer?

It’s crucial to meet students where they’re at during summer learning. After the challenging past few years, now more than ever, we should be prioritizing student and teacher wellness, so summer break should be a time to unwind and relax. This can be accomplished by using appealing lessons for both you and your students. Set realistic expectations for yourself and your class by creating a mix of lesson plans that are relevant, engaging, and meaningful. It’s crucial to find a balance between creating a learning environment where students can focus on what they’re being taught while also giving them opportunities to enjoy their time off. Implement student-driven engagement activities and instruction to create a space where students are looking forward to attending.

Nearpod has quality premade lessons and resources to combat the summer slide in targeted subject areas. There’s also a guide to assist with navigating and launching activities with your students for any learning environment. Keep reading to explore these reliable lessons and engaging features you and your students can enjoy during summer break! Sift through this lesson folder, which includes a collection of premade resources applicable to meet your classroom needs.

Use premade lessons for summer school programs or to send home

We handpicked Nearpod lessons that students can use to practice core topics and strengthen their learning for the following school year. You can easily add to your summer learning plans. These lessons and activities are perfect for independent work or  live front-of-class teaching. Click to add the Nearpod lesson to your library, then share out with students using the lesson code or through your learning management system (LMS), such as Google Classroom.

This ready-to-use guide provides a 6-week schedule you can use for your summer learning plans. Click through to preview and download lessons, videos, and activities fit for your classroom. 

Explore the lesson folder or apply filters in the Lesson Library to find lessons and activities for your classroom. You can search by grade, standards, content type, topic, and subjects. 

Subject areas where students tend to struggle the most during the summer are social and emotional learning (SEL), math, and English language arts (ELA). Here are a few examples of some lessons you can use to address those topics:

Nearpod SEL: Warm Up: Mood Thermometer (K-12)
Nearpod Drag and Drop ELA: Nouns & Verbs (K-3)
  • ELA: Nouns & Verbs (K-3): Students will identify whether a word is a noun or a verb by completing a Drag & Drop activity to assess their mood.
Nearpod Matching Pairs Math: Converting Decimals to Fractions (5-6)

Create a flexible learning environment to meet students’ needs

Summer learning nearpod student choice boards code virtual reality

You can launch a Nearpod lesson by selecting one of three delivery modes and sharing the Nearpod through a code, link, or LMS. Leverage Nearpod codes to promote student choice and support differentiated learning. Take, for example, our Virtual Reality Student Paced Code Template! Add student-paced codes, set the expiration date to the end of summer, and share with students.

Additionally, there are multiple ways you can launch a Nearpod lesson – all to fit your classroom needs:

  • Live Participation: This mode allows you to control the pace of the lesson while students participate and follow on their devices. You can view real-time progress and results as you teach.
  • Student-Paced: Share asynchronous lessons with students so they can move through lessons at their own pace, any time, from anywhere. You can view progress in real-time to monitor student understanding.
  • Front of Class: Project a video when students aren’t joining from their devices. The premade questions in the Interactive Video can be used as discussion prompts, or you can have students record their answers.

Select the launch mode that suits your instruction and share the code or link with students so they can follow along on their devices or complete it at home as individual work.

How can I make summer learning engaging?

Nearpod helps you keep students engaged with interactive activities and slides. Couple that with real-time insight into student learning with our various formative assessment tools, and it’s a perfect match. 

Furthermore, Nearpod’s ability to flex between different classroom settings removes obstacles to student attendance. You can deliver lessons in a flexible format, whether in-person, remote, or somewhere between.

Tips for creating summer lesson plans

If you’re looking to create your own Nearpod lesson, here are some tips you can use for in-class, virtual learning & hybrid learning to prevent summer learning loss:

  • Work with what you got: Use an existing resource, such as a worksheet, video, or Google Slides, and upload directly into  Nearpod.  Add activities to boost engagement. 💡 TIP: Upload a PDF image onto a Draw It to have students write, draw, and annotate.
  • Keep all links in one place: It can be challenging to organize links for your students if you’re teaching virtually. Using the Google Slides Add-On, you can hyperlink text on your Nearpod slides for students to click through.
  • Get real-time insight: Immediately see how students are responding and address misconceptions in the moment to prevent the summer slide by leveraging the power of the Teacher Dashboard and address misconceptions in the moment.
  • Transform your presentation: Summertime is the perfect opportunity for professional development and preparing student learning for the upcoming school year. Whether presenting to teachers or students, make the experience engaging.Here are 6 ways to transform your next presentation.
Nearpod Google Slides Add On

Interested in more tips to create and launch your own Nearpod lessons during the summer?

Nearpod’s engaging formative assessment activities

Students should feel inspired to show up and persist for effective summer learning. Since students are in a summer break mindset, it’s important to weave in exciting learning opportunities and make sure they’re enjoying themselves. Encourage students to review specific topics at home or check for understanding in real-time. 
When teachers bring gamification into the classroom, they provide students with the opportunity to practice these life skills and see them in action from their peers. Time to Climb is a gamification activity that is a teacher’s favorite! Here’s a breakdown explaining why:

  • How it works: Students compete to see who gets to the top of a mountain first by answering a series of questions both correctly and quickly to increase their own points to become one of the top three winners of the game. 
  • Building social skills: When playing in a live classroom environment, students of all ages can laugh and enjoy the integrated community-building elements of their summer learning experience. 
  • Get insight: View how students understand concepts in real-time and use between questions to reflect and address misconceptions quickly.
  • Students love it: Students can choose their own Time to Climb characters to play along with. There are also tons of themes to choose from, including a beach theme which is perfect to getting into the summer spirit!

There are even more engaging activities you can include in your lesson plans to avoid the summer slide. Here are a few:

  • Drag & Drop: This allows students to sort or order images and text sequentially or in groups. Add a background of a diagram or graphic organizer for students to fill in.
  • Collaborate Board: An interactive discussion board that allows students to post text and images to a shared class board. It’s a great way to spark class discussion and brainstorm.
  • Draw It: Allow students the opportunity to demonstrate what they’ve learned by having them respond to prompts by drawing and adding text or images on top of a background.
  • Formative assessment: In addition to the above activities, Nearpod has more traditional assessment tools you can utilize such as Open-Ended Questions, Quizzes, and Polls.

The power of hip-hop pedagogy through Flocabulary

If you’re looking to inspire students through vocabulary, music, and formative assessment activities, Flocabulary is for you. Hip-hop pedagogy gives students a chance to share their knowledge with their classmates and analyze experiences meaningfully. Teachers can enable students to explore their own creativity while aligning their  ideas to relevant coursework. When students express themselves creatively, they are learning and having fun all at once. Here are some additional Flocabulary ideas you can use:

Flocabulary Literature Lesson Library
  • Summer Reading: Flocabulary has a Literature lesson folder that includes rap video lessons about various pieces of literature. Have students watch a video that accompanies their book before or after reading. 
  • Write a summer rhyme: Lyric Lab is a guided rap-writing tool that provides vocabulary words, a rhyming word bank, and music beats students can use to create their masterpieces. Encourage students to practice their writing skills and construct raps with this rhyme-building tool.
  • Review favorite lessons: Students can watch their favorite videos over break. They can jam out with their family and friends while still learning and reviewing academic content!
  • Practice Vocabulary: In addition to following along with the lyrics from the video, students can practice their vocabulary by playing the Vocab Game or reviewing the Vocab Cards. Use Word Up lessons to assign words at each student’s level.

Summer School Made Simple with Nearpod

Implementing summer school programs that have a flexible format supports all learning needs while also freeing up planning time for teachers and administrators. Summer learning can be a daunting process to plan and execute, especially after the past challenging years. Using tech tools, such as Nearpod, will help reduce the stress of summer planning and give you more time to focus on teaching while impacting student growth. With Nearpod and Flocabulary, you can reach all learners by customizing their learning experience to fit their needs, no matter what classroom setting you’re in.

Are you interested in learning summer school strategies from a Nearpod team member? Watch our webinar, “5 Tips for Making Summer School Successful This Year,” for simple ways to boost your summer school program through attracting teacher support, inspiring students, meeting extended learning requirements, and more!

Interested in reading more about this topic? Check out this blog post: 5 Ideas for summer teacher professional development

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