Research shows that students score lower on standardized tests at the end of the summer than at the end of the school year, and are more likely to gain weight while on break. Many exercise experts believe children today are too sedentary, which is contributing to the excess weight in one-third of children in the United States. This has created a groundswell of interest in implementing a whole body approach to education in general while specifically getting kids more active during the summer.
The SUMMER FIT workbook series aims to create fun learning experiences to help children retain and carry over knowledge from the previous school year. Additionally, by presenting a “whole body” approach with lessons and activities that focus on the body and the brain, Summer Fit helps parents and children capitalize on the mental and social benefits of physical exercise. “Summer should be a time for children to step away from their computers and televisions and exercise their brains and bodies naturally,” says series creator George Starks. “Kids should reconnect with themselves, their families and their friends on a personal level. They should be outside playing, but also brushing up on academic skills from the previous year, or those that they may find more challenging than others. They should also read and apply other classroom skills in enjoyable and entertaining ways.”
George Starks founded Summer Fit Learning in 2010 after leading the national bestselling Summer Bridge Activities workbook series for Rainbow Bridge Publishing for 10 years. After the company was sold to North Carolina-based publisher Carson-Dellosa, Starks continued to build and lead a new summer learning division for Carson-Dellosa for four years.
Starks believes that riding a bike and reading a book with a child this summer can make or break their school year. The espresso-making, bike-riding, educational publisher is the creator of the new Summer Fit™ workbook series. He would like nothing better than to inspire parents to put down their smartphones and computers long enough to ride bikes, play at the park and read with their children this summer – some traditions should not be left behind.
Even as a young child, Starks was aware that mental and physical activity are interwinded. The two orientations – which Starks feels represents a balanced approach to learning – are missing in many homes today. Fortunately, they are being adopted by parents and teachers around the country who are taking notice of what researchers are saying about this "whole-body" approach.
This is the 2nd year I have reviewed Summer Fit and the 2nd year I will use this wonderful resource for parents. This year I am reviewing the First to Second grade book. As a mother who liked to keep my children busy in the summer, and keep their minds remembering what they learned in school. My husband and I put together every year a summer school program for the kids, that includes reading, writing, piano, math and field trips. Last year we traveled and used three of the books to keep our children sharp and ready for school in the fall. On a very personal note, this wonderful resource helped my children in school, they remembered what they had learned, keep their minds thinking about math facts and yet, there was more involved.
What is more involved? Let me explain based on the book I am reviewing in the first to second grade manual, there is not only the reading, writing, and math which helps these little kiddo's stay sharp on their skills with just a few minutes a day, but there is also a fitness, nutrition and values piece to this book. My children love this all around well rounded book. They look forward to the activities and learn what they can do to be more nutritious each day.
Each page is colorfully illustrated with pictures that are appropriate for the age. The Values piece is wonderful, in the first week, they learn about Honesty for an example, and that is taught using Abraham Lincoln. Week 5 is about Kindness and the illustration is based on Princess Diana, my daughter will love the activities surrounding this value.
I highly suggest this resource to help parents keep their children's minds sharp and teachable all summer long. My three children love the books and I have never had one time that they fought me about learning. They were always anxious to see what the next day would bring them. I am very excited to start that up again tomorrow as our summer begins. I received a copy of this manual from Media Guests for my honest review, I was not paid to review this book. You can watch a video here: