Now that it is officially summer, Breakout Mentors is fielding a lot of questions from parents that are looking for summer activities for their kids. Our message remains the same: programming should be a year-round activity for your student if they enjoy it and continue learning. We are thrilled with students that want to begin during the summer, but hope they keep with it during the school year.
Let’s imagine for a second that science isn’t taught in late elementary or middle school. The high schools have a couple classes you can take as electives, but that’s it. Your son enjoys science – he spends a lot of time hunched over the microscope or telescope he received for his birthday. The few times he has been exposed to learning science at summer camps or talking with his uncle the scientist, he has been thrilled. Should you really wait until he reaches high school to start learning science with any consequential depth?
Here’s another thought to try out: math and the piano are only taught during the summer. Each summer kids go to all day camps to learn math and how to play the piano. How much do you think your daughter will retain from one summer to the next? How many times is she going to relearn the same skills? How effective is she going to be trying to learn from a book on her own the other 9 months of the year? Is that the best way to encourage these important subjects she enjoys?
These thought exercises seem absurd, yet they are eerily accurate for kids programming. Computer science is largely left out of schools and relegated to summer camps. Unless parents encourage it as a year-round activity, learning progress will be minimal. Now is a great time to start, but we encourage you to keep with it as long as your son or daughter is having fun and learning. Breakout Mentors can help.