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Dakota News Now: Preventing Summer Learning Loss with Sylvan Learning

Michelle McGuckin, Center Director for Sylvan Learning in Sioux Falls, shared tips to help prevent school-aged children from falling behind in the summer.

As summer approaches, parents often worry about their children experiencing summer learning loss. In an interview with Dakota News NowMichelle McGuckin, center director for Sylvan Learning in Sioux Falls, provided advice to help school-aged children maintain — and even enhance — their academic skills during the summer break.

One thing McGuckin emphasizes is the importance of allowing children to experience boredom. 

“I think as a parent … [you need] to recognize that it’s okay for your kid to be bored sometimes,” she said. “It might be really annoying and they might ask you ‘What am I supposed to do?’ but you know having a little boredom is okay because kids can use that to find out ways to express themselves and what they’re interested in.” 

McGuckin suggests reducing screen time and encouraging activities like puzzles or outdoor play instead of defaulting to television or video games. Additionally, she strongly recommends incorporating daily reading into children’s summer routines. 

“After working hard all school year, it’s crucial to help children retain their knowledge over the summer,” said McGuckin. “Daily reading is a simple yet effective way to prevent summer learning loss.” 

Sylvan Learning is a supplemental and enrichment education brand that offers structured summer tutoring programs designed to keep children engaged and improve their academic skills. At McGuckin’s center, these sessions are held twice a week, totaling four hours, and focus on maintaining and enhancing reading skills. With a low student-to-teacher ratio of three-to-one, each child receives personalized attention, ensuring he or she stays focused and motivated without becoming frustrated.

For parents looking for additional support, Sylvan Learning’s summer tutoring programs offer a structured and engaging way to help children continue learning. By fostering a balance of structured learning and creative exploration, parents can ensure their children return to school in the fall ready to succeed.

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