Our Plan for Summer Learning

We won’t really be finished our regular school work (well, only math really) until the end of May.  Mainly due to my limitations, we needed to slow it down a few times this year for math instruction, so we’ll be going a little longer than originally planned.  While we wrap that up, I’ve been excitedly pulling together plans for our summer studies.  We definitely slow it down, but for the sake of all we’ve learned over the school year we don’t take a total brain break in the summer.  

Here’s our plan — 

Math – I’ve ordered the Life of Fred 4 Book Elementary Set to work through.  We have never used Life of Fred before.  I’m starting with the first elementary set.  I want to use each book one room schoolhouse style with my whole crew this summer, adapting as necessary to each of their abilities.  I realize my oldest, maybe my oldest two, might not learn anything new, but they will have the chance to review and have the joy of learning and sharing what they know with their younger siblings.  

Also, my two oldest guys who have already begun Saxon math work will continue to review 20 flashcards daily throughout the summer plus do math grammar copywork. For example, this year my oldest has learned dividend, quotient, fraction, division, obtuse, etc.  Using Brandy’s directions, I created math grammar packets for each of my guys.  If you’d like to do the same, you can download and print them here — Saxon Math 1 and Saxon Math 3.  When completed, they’ll add these to the math tab in their classical notebooks.  Since my guys are firmly in the grammar stage, this math vocabulary is part of the foundation they’re laying for future learning.  I’m quite sure that forgetting these math terms over the summer would only make math harder next year, which I definitely want to avoid! 

[If you’re looking to create some handwriting worksheets of your own, this handwriting website is great for creating and printing sheets quickly.  However, note that worksheets generated on this site cannot be saved.  Since I want to use these packets again and again as each of my littles approaches the various math levels, I needed to save them.]  

Reading – We’ll be reading our way through the Picture Book Classics: Ages 4-8 section of Honey for A Child’s Heart.  During the school year we follow a 36 week schedule of reading from Ambleside Online, which my littles have LOVED! We’re planning to continue that next year, but will be taking a summer break for classics of a different kind.  I’m pretty excited to jump into this one!  There are so many great books that I remember from my childhood, like The Tale of Peter Rabbit, Uncle Remus, and Corduroy, plus so many more that none of us have read yet like Whose Mouse are You? and The Little House.    

Bible – We’ve been picture, ponder, praying various Bible passages all school year.  My littles love it & I love getting the peak into how they’re processing scripture.  While our scheduled reading is complete, we’re now going to read and picture, ponder, pray verses or passages based on various character themes, like patience and love.  

Science/ Nature Studies – Getting outside lots is our only plan for nature study! We have so many great parks near us.  We’ll be exploring and bringing along our nature study bags to document, draw, and collect.  For days where we need to stay inside, we have nature guides and pictures from our travels that we can research and draw.  

Geography – We are still not doing map blobbing as much as I’d like us to and I know it’s super important for the educational path we’ve chosen and for our goals for our littles.  We’ll be using Brandy’s, from Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood, continental blob mapping resource.  I’m excited to see the progress of my littles over the summer as we focus more on this work.

Extras – We’ll keep up with our piano lessons and independent reading plus some fun soccer lessons.  

We’re keeping it classical and focusing a lot on memory work and reading.  Of course, we certainly won’t be doing all these things daily and it will all be dispersed among baseball games, summer swinging, picnics, bike riding, swimming, and more – perfect for my grammar age littles.  Oh yeah and we’re expecting the arrival of our new little baby this summer, so there’s that!  What are your summer plans? Or are your schooling year round perhaps? I’d love to hear!


  1. says

    Our summer will include lots of field trips as we travel, audio books, library books, read-alouds, science experiments, and just whatever we want to learn. We’ll go on hikes studying creation as well. We also really want to focus on teaching the youngest two how to swim and how to ride their bikes this year. Every week will probably have a different schedule, but we like to keep our math skills sharp. I love using http://www.math-drills.com to print out simple addition, subtraction, and multiplication sheets for timed practice since we want to sharpen those skills. I also hope to curl up and work on more reading lessons with my 3rd since he’s not progressing as fast as I thought he would. I think the more laid-back summer might be the perfect time for his reading to take off.

    • says

      I love your ideas! When I wrote mine out, it seemed like a lot, but the way we plan to approach it will be casually so I think it’ll all work out. I usually have a few life skills I try to focus on each summer too…I know tying shoe laces is one of those! Thanks for the reminder that loving on our baby will be our greatest focus this summer!!

  2. says

    If you do end up making handwriting sheets for the vocab of saxon math, I would LOVE it if you would share here! I often find that my kids know how to do the math, but they don’t always understand the grammar (what does parallel mean? which is oblique again?). Sounds like a great summer 🙂

  3. says

    Sounds like a great summer plan! We school year round, but it definitely looks different in the summer. I’m challenging myself to make sure the kids are outside at least 3 hours a day. This has been no problem so far, but I do have to remind my self to shoo them outside (once they are there they love it…I just have to remember to tell them to go play =)

    We will take a true week off per month and then the majority of August off. I’m planning on writing more about it in my Charlotte Mason Summer series.

    • says

      Amy, I love that goal! I should give myself an outside time goal. They love it, I love it, but I’m not so motivated being hot & pregnant these days. :/

      I’m excited to read your ideas!

  4. says

    I LOVE THIS! Thanks for posting Beth! I ditto the request for the saxon handwriting sheets. That is an excellent idea! I always have my boys continue with Math Drill over the summer so that their math facts stay cemented in their brains. Honey For A Child’s Heart is my FAVORITE, FAVORITE, FAVORITE resource for good books. That’s a great idea to use it in that manner over the summer. 🙂 Love it!

    • says

      Thanks, Suzanne! I’m starting work on those handwriting sheets right now! I’m hoping it won’t take me more than one night then I’ll update this post to share with everyone. 🙂

      Honey For A Child’s Heart is my favorite too! How’s it going with Honey For A Woman’s Heart?

  5. says

    This is great! I’m working on our summer to do list now. We do 4 hour outside minimum regardless of weather. It gets challenging in the 120 heat, but we manage by getting out early! I’m interested in doing map blogging which we haven’t begun yet, and I have a little one to potty train.

    Oh….and Last Child In The Woods was instrumental for us in keeping everyone outdoors daily. It’s been 3 years now and we’ve managed to do it 95% of the time. I send then out with water bottles, open the windows when I can or join them. Sometimes I really have to resist structuring their play. They are so much more imaginative than I ever was!

    • says

      Hailey, I need to add that to my to-read list. I’ve heard of it, but haven’t read it yet. It’s been pouring here all day & my guys said it’s the perfect day for grass soup 🙂 I love how their imaginations work!

      I hope to start (&finish) the math worksheets tonight! I’ll update this post asap when I’m done. Thanks for your interest!

  6. says

    And….I’d love those math copy work sheets too ;). Love your blog sweetie! Blessings to your family as you welcome another. So exciting!


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