Summer learning links and ideas

summer learning links
Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool, also blogs about motherhood at Steady Mom

Summer will officially knock on our doors later this week, and everything outdoors is bursting with life. Indoors we are bursting too–to get out and enjoy different activities–biking, swimming at the beach, eating ice cream, basking in the sun.

But we sometimes forget about the other side of summer. It varies depending on where you live, but may include: hot, sticky afternoons when you run for shade and a/c, bugs and mosquitoes, afternoon thunderstorms, and a lack of structure that sends many kids (and their parents) over the edge.

I wrote this post to help prevent the latter from happening. Whether you school year-round or not, you may find yourself in need of summer learning ideas to keep everyone happy at home.

Hopefully these links will help!



* A lighthearted summer reading list for kids (& moms, too!) @ Simple Homeschool

* Free summer bookmarks & reading charts @ Wise Owl Factory

* Summer library programs – Years ago I wrote about why I would not sign my children up for the library’s summer reading program. When I wrote that post I wanted my young kids to fall in love with reading–as opposed to falling in love with bribes and rewards from their reading.

Now that my kids’ love of reading is firmly established, I would sign them up if they were interested. Just goes to show how our seasons as mamas and families change and what we need changes as well.


* Cursive Writing Practice: Jokes & Riddles by Violet Findley – Tsh @ Simple Mom mentioned this in her summer post the other day, and it looks so fun! (There’s also a version in print instead of cursive.)

* Kids’ Travel Journal – I love this journal, which my kids took on our trip to England last year. It encouraged writing and created an incredible keepsake.

* Free Printables to go alongside the series Draw, Write, Now @ 1+1+1=1


* Math Game Time – This site has a ton of free online math games and videos–perfect for fun and refreshing those math skills all at the same time.

* Math Arcade @ Fun Brain


* Around the world – one picture book at a time @ Simple Homeschool

* Summer history project @ Celebrating Family



* A beach blanket education @ Simple Homeschool

* 50 summer science ideas @ Science Sparks

* Lessons learned while camping @ Simple Homeschool

And more…

* Summer Bridge Activities – These colorful workbooks come highly recommended. For those concerned about summer learning loss, and particularly if you have a child who enjoys workbooks, these contain 15 minute reviews for each weekday of the summer.

* Create a summer points chart @ Busy Kids = Happy Mom

Kids earn points for tackling various challenges over the summer and cash in their points for prizes set by the family.

* Pool school @ Teaching Stars

Ways to use the water for learning as well as fun!

freedom* Inspiration for the mama – Summer often gives a little extra breathing room for mamas to reevaluate our roles and any changes we hope to make within our family life in the future.

My new ebook, The Steady Mom’s Freedom Guide: Joyful Motherhood on Your Own Terms, is now available, and I hope it’s an encouragement to you!

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”
~ John Lubbock

Have any links to add? What resources do you plan to use as your family learns this summer?

About Jamie Martin

Jamie is a mama to three cute kids born on three different continents. She is the co-founder and editor of Simple Homeschool, where she writes about mindful parenting, intentional education, and the joy found in a pile of books. Jamie is also the author of a handful of titles, including her newest release, Give Your Child the World.


  1. Thanks for the links, always handy to have tricks up your sleeve. And I look forward to checking out your new book!

  2. Alex Hopkins says:

    Oh how I wish your ebook was already out. It sounds like what I need to read right about now! And I have a 14 hour car trip ahead of me this weekend and I’ve been looking for something lovely to read! Darn!

  3. This summer my boys (rising 3rd and 4th graders) will be reading and journaling every day. They will also be practicing math(double digit subtraction for one and simple multiplication/division for the other) using Funbrain’s Math Baseball, Math Game Time and whatever else I can find. My daughter will be reading, writing and helping her grandma and me on the family tree project. Also she will be working on her sewing and cooking skills. Plus lots of fun bike riding, swimming, hiking and playing baseball with friends.

  4. LOVE the “around the world one picture book at a time” link! Thanks!

  5. Thanks for the handwriting suggestion. That could be a fun summer activity that is usually seen as tedious. My daughter loves to call her grandparents and tell them a new joke.
    Katie @ I Stay Home For This’s latest post: The Not Quite Minimalist Life

  6. Wonderful links! Thank you so much!! It’s funny — I felt the same way about summer reading programs for a long time. But this year we joined up again — the kids were excited about keeping track of how much they read. I feel really confident now that we don’t “need” it to encourage reading, so my perspective shifted. It’s amazing how often that has happened already as a still relatively new homeschooling family!
    Kara’s latest post: Summer, a rediscovery.

  7. I am so excited for your book to come out! Sounds wonderful!

  8. Thumbs up on the points chart. Summer is the perfect time to get the bribe the kids into doing all the stuff you don’t have time to do during the school year! Like chores, etc. Did I hear someone say, “weed pulling”?

    We aren’t doing anything super academic during summer, but number fluency drills are time well spent for multiplication tables, etc. We use the Math Trainer on MathIsFun.

    Check out ZoomChess – which is always free for the beginning level “Learn the Rules” playing environment. Your littles can try the premium version when they are ready to start winning games, and humiliating their parents.

  9. Henriette Salem says:

    Great links, thanks so much! There’s a new one under math; Teaches children K thru 6, metrics via cartoons. With the push of STEM science, technolgy, engineering and medicine need to get the metric system down. The kids really do laugh & learn, cute stuff.

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