Sunday, February 05, 2023 | Rajab 13, 1444 H
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EDITOR IN CHIEF- ABDULLAH BIN SALIM AL SHUEILI

Summer Learning loss and Narrowing Achievement Gap

Interesting, exciting results published in 'American Research' Journal, followed “students in grades 1 through 6 over five summers, show 52% of students lost an average of 39% of their total school year gains during the summer months.


The study used data from Northwest Evaluation Association that included 200 million test scores for 18 million students in 7,500 school districts” (Atteberry& McEachin, 2020).


Nevertheless, some students might continue to gain knowledge over the summer, whereas others tend to lose it. In comparison with formal schooling times, as students show great commitment to learn, students spend a significant portion of their time outside the school setting. That out of school time is concentrated in the summer months, a time when the school plays a little role in students’ lives (Atteberry& McEachin, 2020).


Moreover, research suggests that summer learning loss is cumulative. Thus, it contributes to a substantial portion of students’ achievement gap. For instance, some researchers estimated that “approximately two-thirds of the reading achievement gap by ninth grade could be attributed to summer learning loss in the five years of schooling”.


Moreover, there is a strong correlation between time and academic learning time, and due to the absence of skills practice in the school, acquired skills degrade over time outside the school throughout the formal summer break What’s more, finding show that summer loss differs by students’ personality, grads level and subject. Overall, loss in literacy skills is more likely to be less than mathematics ability over the summer (Mccombs et al., 2011).


However, summer activities such as reading books, and summers camp tend to be more useful. According to Dewar (2019), there are some suggestions to prevent summer learning loss, such as: starting a summer interesting and challenging reading program, setting aside little pieces of time to review mathematics concepts using educational games and apps that make practice more fun, playing “unplugged” number games to help children sharpen their math skills, taking a summer trip to museums or natural sites which is helping children enjoy hands on experiences, and allowing the student to explore a different side out of schooling curriculum as memorising parts of the Holy Quran, palaeontology, astronomy, rock collection, ancient history. Research indicates that such practices may help improve summer learning loss and enrichment opportunities. Simultaneously, integrating with and out of school learning.


In conclusion sum up, the previous research findings should be of interest to policymakers and parents in improving learning loss through summer breaking. Additionally, funders of summer learning programmes play a substantial role to enhance the quality of the learning summer programmes which involve the knowledge, skills based on creativity and imagination that satisfies the students' curiosity about materials and tools that are never made into the school curriculum.


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