Special Report: Keeping summer 'brain drain' away

Special Report: Keeping summer 'brain drain' away

TRI-STATE (WFIE) - Summer break is full of suntans, bug bites, and if you're lucky, a family vacation or two.

It's a three month free-for-all for the kids.

There's no time for homework, studying, or worrying about the grade you received on your final science project, right? - Wrong.

Some doctors say now is the right time to stay focused on school to keep "brain drain" away.

"It is a time usually used to describe the learning loss that happens during summer break. Researchers have also found there's a 30% loss and academic skills in math and science," said Deaconess Pediatrician, Dr. Kusum Pradhan.

Some kids are losing up to a third of what they learn during the school year over summer break.

Dr. Pradhan says this doesn't mean kids shouldn't enjoy their time off. Parents just need to show them how to balance fun and learning.

There's a lot to do at day to week-long camps, with activities for almost everyone.

Here in the Tri-State, you can find camps centered around music, art, science, technology, and math.

But how do you choose what's best for your camper and right for your wallet?

"It's expensive to go to different things all summer. I know that. I have four kids, and I see it with families a lot. Coming here, it's not something you're going to get nervous about or stressed about," said Snickerdoodle Art's Owner, Andrea Halbig.

Halbig hosts summer camps for kids up to 12 years -old at her shop on Franklin Street.

"We want to give them something they've never done before or give them an outlet or experience they might absolutely love and carry through," said Halbig. "I can't stress enough how important it is for kids to have it in their lives. It's using a different side of your brain."

Across town in Miss Julie's Kindermusik class, younger students have the chance to sharpen their skills this summer, through music.

"In everything we do, yes, they're enjoying it and having fun, but that brain is being fully enhanced throughout the whole class," said instructor and owner, Julie Wade.

Moms and their little Mozarts agree.

"Not only does this nurture my daughter, both of my daughters love for music, it nurtures their mind, body and spirits," said Kindermusik Parent, Kate Murray.

What if you don't have the time or money for summer camp?

"Just involve your children in day to day activities. They can learn math, science, nature is the best place to learn," said Dr. Pradhan.

If you're having trouble coming up with ideas, and your kids are still in school this week, just ask their teachers. They're eager to help.

"We really encourage the reading program through the public library. We make lists here and try to encourage every child to do what they enjoy," said a Scott Elementary teacher,

There are free breakfast and lunch programs hosted by the EVSC this summer, too.

Whatever your children dive into this summer, try to understand learning looks different when school is out.

"I think summer is the best time to take a break from regular activities. Children can learn and have fun at the same time," said Dr. Pradhan.

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