Avoid Summer Brain Drain
by Staff | Jun 19, 2014 1:07 pm
The New Haven Boys & Girls Club sent in this information about a summer learning program for kids and teens, to keep their brains sharp over the summer months when they’re out of class.
The Boys and Girls of New Haven announces the launch of the Summer Brain Gain program, a summer learning loss prevention program developed specifically for Boys & Girls Clubs.
Each summer, an estimated 43 million children in the U.S. miss out on expanded learning opportunities that could prevent them from falling behind before the next school year begins. In Connecticut, only one in three schoolchildren (an estimated 205,407 kids) participates in summer learning programs. During summer, most youth lose about two months’ worth of math skills. Low-income youth also lose more than two months’ worth of reading skills, while their middle-class peers make slight gains.
“Summer learning losses can stack up from year to year, causing low-income children to fall further and further behind, ultimately endangering their chances of high school graduation,” said Carlos Collazo, Director of Program Services and Operations. “We are committed to ensuring that New Haven’s youth, especially those who need us most, graduate from high school on time with a plan for the future. That’s why we are offering the Summer Brain Gain program to fight the detrimental effect of summer learning loss.”
Summer Brain Gain is comprised of 17 one-week modules with fun, themed activities for elementary school, middle school and high school students. Supported by Disney, each module takes a project-based learning approach; youth engage in a process of learning through discovery, creative expression, group work and a final project or production. With modules topics such as “Green Team,” “Wacky Watch” and “Connect the Dots,” participants can make sculptures out of found objects, create weather in a bottle, or even learn how they are connected to the President of the United States of America.
Summer Brain Gain was pilot tested in more than 200 Clubs in 2013. While the average low-income U.S. student lost at least two months of learning last summer, the average Summer Brain Gain participant did not. Given this positive impact, Summer Brain Gain will be offered at 1,000 Boys & Girls Clubs across the country this summer, including New Haven.
The Boys & Girls Club of New Haven’s full-day summer program – which incorporates the Brain Gain model – will run for six weeks, from July 7 to Aug. 15. For more information about the programs and camp registration, go to http://bgcnewhaven.org/youth_programs/summer-camp. For specific information about Summer Brain Gain, please visit www.greatfutures.org/braingain.