5 Benefits of Summer Academic Programs

5 Benefits of Summer Academic Programs

By Susan V. Schaefer, M.Ed., M.A.T.


Unless you live in Antarctica in a snow cave, you have probably heard the expression “summer slide” to describe setbacks in academic skills which students experience over the summer.  Honestly, even if you haven’t heard of this, it is just common sense that, like an athlete could not take three months off from practices and still expect to perform at the same level, students who do not practice academic skills for three months are going to lose ground. There is overwhelming research proving the benefits of keeping up with, and developing academic skills over the summer really pays off.  Here are 5 reasons why:


  • Increased School Performance – Study skills, note taking, organization, and time management are no longer in middle or high school curriculums. But, students need these skills for optimal academic performance especially underachieving students and students with attention issues.  Summer is the perfect time to learn and practice strategies to increase school performance.


  • Fill in the Gaps – It is an opportunity to catch up and fill in learning gaps. Many students need extra help in a subject or two. Maybe there are cracks in math foundation skills, reading comprehension, or essay writing.  Statistically, tutoring in math, reading, and writing over the summer helps prevent summer slide. Really, it just does.


  • Increased Confidence – Summer academic coaching does wonders for increasing student confidence. Can you imagine that football player taking three months off from practice and having to immediately play in a big game? Pretty stressful.  Summer academic coaching and tutoring really helps reduce anxiety that can build over the summer so students can begin their new school year feeling prepared, positive and ready to learn.


  • Build Academic Skills – Without the constant pressure and stress students experience during the school year, it is a perfect time to introduce new academic skills. In the summer, students are more relaxed and less exhausted, making it a great time to process and practice new techniques and strategies.


  • School Transitions – This is a big one. The bar is set higher with every new school year and summer academic coaching and tutoring prepares students for those increased expectations. This is especially important for students transitioning to middle school when students suddenly have different teachers for different subjects. Students entering high school are expected to be more independent and self-reliant.  Teachers will no longer make sure they turn in homework or complete projects on time.  If a high school student needs help they will need to be good self advocates.  And, don’t forget planning for midterms and finals for the first time.


As you can see, there is quite a case to be made for summer academic coaching and tutoring. Working specifically on areas your child needs, reinforcing and keeping important concepts and skills fresh through practice, and engaging activities catering to your child’s learning style and preferences will help ensure they do not experience “summer slide” and stay on the road to success.


— Susan V. Schaefer, M.Ed., M.A.T.


expert biography

Susan Schaefer is the owner of Academic Coaching Associates, LLC, the first company on the East Coast to combine academic and life coaching, creating an extraordinarily effective holistic approach to student achievement. With a proven record of improving academic success for students, both nationally and internationally, Sue is committed to helping students realize their academic potential and achieve their goals.

Sue is also a sought-after speaker on many educational subjects, and has published numerous articles on education and parenting. She wrote a weekly education column for Patch.com, appeared on Huffington Post Live, and the WXLM radio show to name just a few. Prior to opening Academic Coaching Associates, Sue was a classroom teacher and holds teaching certificates in both Connecticut and Illinois.


2446 Albany Avenue, Suite 301
West Hartford, CT 06117

(860) 297-1591

Susan Schaefer


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