I am not exactly sure when or how the reference to “summer learning loss” came into the education context and conversation, but I remain confused about it. I still have many questions in order to understand if this is something that exists, as well as to understand how much of a problem it really is.
Did summer learning loss always exist? Has it always mattered and how? What came first– learning loss, or increased learning expectations? What is the nature of this learning loss, and how is it measured to say or prove that it exists? Are there teaching methods that impact a reduction or increase in such learning loss? How much is this learning loss due to memory? How important is the learning that is considered to be the lost part? Who decides? Is a reveiw of learning still okay to do…..ok to spend time doing?
If it does exist and is a problem, how should it be addressed? What should be examined and supported?
I don’t recall it being a concern in my own schooling, unless I was unaware. Has it increased since my school days? As a parent of teens–one recently finished high school, and one in Gr. 10–I have not yet had a concern over summer learning loss. I haven’t done anything in a deliberate way to offset such. If I had been told that they did indeed have some, I am not sure I would have been concerned. Would I have worried about how they would make it up – at home, at school, extra tutoring? Would I have started to advocate for year round schooling as one solution?
But I think I have just as many questions about extending the school year, but hopefully my next post….! In the meantime, I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences with this!