Should they be working in the holidays?

Should they be working in the holidays?
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Should they be working in the holidays?

Should they be working in the holidays?




Hmmm maybe a bit!!


What side of the fence do you fall on? 


It’s a hard one isn’t it. I’m a teacher and a mum of 3 primary school aged children. And even I find it a tricky one to find the right balance!! Surely they deserve a break? But 6 weeks is a long time. How long before the skills that they mastered at school start to regress with all this time off? And what about slightly older children? Apparently those aged eight to 13 are the worse affected - particularly with repetition-based learning such as times tables and spelling. 


Every family is different and many of us have many different balls to juggle. The summer holiday is no different. Some of us are working full time- booking a whole variety of clubs for our children to swim, catch, jump and run themselves into. Some of us may plan to be away for a long stretch- the sun, sand and sea teaching our children far more than any workbook. Or perhaps we hope to just enjoy doing nothing and not yelling “PUT YOUR SHOES ON” eleventy billion times before 9am. It isn’t ever a one size fits all so this is just a suggestion…


In the Miller household, we keep the reading ticking over during the summer. Mostly every week night (although some late nights slip through the net). In the first week of summer I don’t insist on ANY homeschooling. Everyone needs a break. A proper one.


Then, as we approach our second full week of the school holiday, we will begin. First of all, I take a look at their targets from their school reports. Usually it’s multiplying by 10,100 and 1000, times tables or telling the time. Whatever it is, I print a set of the same worksheets out with the same theme and then I give them one every other day or so to work on. Takes 5 mins and usually sorts that target out quickly before summer is over! Repetitive, quick learning like this is known as precision teaching and it works wonders. More on this soon!


I also like to use workbooks to save on printing. My fave are the daily CGP books or the ten minute CGP books. My children are approaching year 1, 3 and 7 but I always use the PREVIOUS year group books so the learning is reinforced. No-one needs to feel stretched or stressed over the holidays and parents should not be given the responsibility of teaching brand new topics to their children. This can cause problems later on.


Ideally our summer will look like this:


⏰ 20 minutes of work 

⏰ Every other day

⏰ Maths & English only 

⏰ Morning only (straight from breakfast)

⏰ Previous year group work books 

⏰ Marble reward for a page completed (this leads in to a treat towards the end of the holiday)

⏰ Reading every week night- weekends off


I lay the work out the night before next to their breakfast bowls. That is the expectation and mostly they get it done before breakfast. If they don’t, then we leave it on the table. They have to get it done before the end of the day.


Keeping it short & sweet keeps them happy.

Keeping to mornings keeps concentration and focus at an all time high.

Keeping to the previous year group keeps confidence levels up.

Keeping to Maths & English keeps core skills supported.

Keeping a reward system keeps everyone motivated.


REMEMBER A CHILD CAN SIT & FOCUS IN A TASK FOR 3x THEIR AGE (eg. 5yo should work for only 15mins; 10yo 30mins)


Every family is different. The above are just simply ideas for you to pick and choose from. If you wanted to do a whole day of school work amidst a full week off, it absolutely shouldn’t be a whole day of workbooks ???? (games count!!)


Your family. 

Your children. 

Your rules.

Your routine. 

You know what works best. ❤

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