I send home this Summer Packet at the end of the year for my parents and students to work on during the summer, if they choose. Many parents aren’t sure what to do with young children to promote learning in the summer, and tend to resort to worksheets and flashcards. Hopefully this packet provides them with fun, hands-on learning activities.
I send home a parent note explaining the purpose of a summer packet, and a list of the materials enclosed.
I send home a booklet with several activities parents can do at home with their children. I also include a book list and website list.
A set of rhyming cards are included in the packet for children to practice matching rhyming words. At different times during the year, I have the kids make a few sets of matching cards by gluing the pictures onto construction paper die-cuts. This year, my kids have a set of 10 rhyming cards glued to dinosaur cutouts and a set of 10 cards glued to frogs. We keep the sets at school so that the children can practice matching rhyming words. These sets are sent home in the summer packet.
I print out the grid game for each child, and add stickers for decoration. I use stickers of popular characters to spark their interest in the game (Barbie, Star Wars, Harry Potter, etc). Last year, when a child mentioned gifts in class, I had another child thank me for the Scooby Doo game, even though that wasn’t the end-of-year gift I had given them. You can either include dice (the Dollar Tree sells packs of them) or a home-made spinner. To make the spinners, attach a large colored paper clip to a CD with a paper fastener (also called a brad). Use a Sharpie to write the numbers on the rainbow side of the CD. You can spray paint the other side of the CD to cover up any words, if desired. To play a Grid Game, children roll the die or spin the spinner and count out the correct amount of pieces to place in each grid. Play continues until the grid is full. Children practice one-to-one correspondence, numeral identification, and counting.
Ocean Animal Race (Counting Game)
This is a printable dice game children can play for counting and numeral recognition practice. To play, children roll a dotted game die. The child counts the dots on the die, and circles the number they rolled. They continue rolling and circling the number until one of the ocean animals wins. Directions are printed on the game for parents.
Summer Book Bingo
Parents can randomly choose a book activity on this chart to do with their child during the summer. After they have read the book/completed the activity, the child can either color that square or stick a sticker over the square. They get bingo when the whole bingo chart is full.
Extra Weekly Readers
We usually have a few leftover Weekly Readers, so I add these to the packet.
The pipe cleaners are included for letter and numeral formation. This is also explained in the parent letter.
Easy Reader Books
I include two easy reader books that I printed from Reading A-Z. You can find many free printable books on Jessica Meacham’s Emergent Reader page.
Spray-paint lima beans so that they have a different color on each side. Children use them for counting, patterning, grid games, etc. They can use them in a toss game by tossing the beans on the table and counting how many of each color. They can also be used for comparing more/less/same.