MILWAUKEE - Isolated during virtual learning, many parents are looking to see how to rebuild engagement for kids amid the pandemic. Heading outdoors this summer may be able to help.
After months of distance learning on a laptop, many students are just now getting back into the classroom with only weeks left of the school year.
"A lot of parents have talked to us about this idea that perhaps during the COVID cycle, their kids have not grown or developed as they would have anticipated," Dennis Maple said.
While that is a common concern, Maple, with Goddard Systems, Inc., believes young children are always learning, growing and developing, even in the midst of a pandemic. Looking ahead, he says the organization's new summer learning programs combine a structured environment with fun, academic and social development.
"Both of them are outdoor, curriculum-based programs that are designed to build on what the kids enjoy doing, allow them to have fun and at the same time, grow and develop and learn new things," said Maple.
According to Dr. Helen Hadani, an expert in creative thinking and child development, summer learning stimulates creativity as they can engage in nature.
"We know that outdoor play provides endless opportunities for children to engage in multi-sensory and exploratory play so children can touch, feel and experiment in nature. This is the best way for children, especially young children, to learn science," Dr. Hadani said.
In turn, driving their learning as they explore their world once again and work toward a confident return to the classroom for fall.
"Research tells us clearly that there’s a type of play that builds children's self-confidence, the resilience and executive function skills, like planning and flexible thinking," said Hadani.
To learn more about the summer learning programs and check out the parenting under five videos that talk about the anxiety of returning, what does it mean to have a lost year and more, visit their website.