You might have a vision of summers you gave up your swimming time during middle or high school to make up units (I made up civics one junior high summer – what a way to make politics boring!). Otherwise you went to camp, right? Imagine a summer school with one preschool student, two kindergarteners, two first graders, two second graders, two 3rd graders, a fourth grader, two fifth graders, and a seventh grader. This is meant to shore up skills for struggling students. What would you give them that’s appropriate across the board? What activity to engage them all?
I think the older kids are getting a kick out of some of the younger-aimed materials. It’s like going back in time. I make them do harder layers: more writing, underlining the parts of speech, etc… So far I’ve really only broken it up into two tables – younger and older – for one writing assignment. I think both is good – exposure to all ages and time with similar age. The “All About Me” packet helps the students get to know each other, and they’re keeping a summer journal with daily writing, a prompt a day.
They get snacks and lunch for this month. Lots of outside time (soccer and climbing and swinging). Music (an actual music teacher though she doesn’t sing on tune). I’ve been innovating, such as writing things we work on in both Spanish and English, with the help of my Spanish-speaking paras, since many students are bilingual.
Remembering how much my sister and I missed school by a few weeks into summer, I think I would have enjoyed it. The little ones are so excited to play with the olders. Some of my paras’ kids are attending, which makes for nice hang-out time for those in middle school with those just entering. And I’m gathering ideas for multi-age groups next year.