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Vacation Workbooks: the Pros and Cons

BEIRUT | - September 11, 2014, 14h17
 Vacation Workbooks
Chronicler Nada Chaoul brilliantly describes this issue in her short story entitled "Intelligent Vacations", an excerpt of which is presented here: " The most important thing about vacation homework was to begin it early, as in the first week of July […] Otherwise, a terrifying prospect is likely to threaten children: Having forgotten EVERYTHING when going back to school".

That said, is vacation homework really so effective? Pedagogy professionals, or educationalists, have different points of view as to the ways of taking advantage of vacations in order to learn new things or to enhance the knowledge acquired in class.
Pros of Vacation Workbooks: A good opportunity to work differently

According to some educationalists, a two-month vacation is a very long time! So in order to prevent children from forgetting what they have learnt during the year, we can help them improve their knowledge in a different way from the methods used in class. This could be done by introducing humor and imagination for instance, and especially by making studying a time of complicity between parents and children. Thus, parents can really evaluate their children’s school level. It is also the right time for adults to enhance children’s self-confidence, by stressing the good job they are doing, and all other matters teachers didn’t necessarily have the time to concentrate on during the year.

Advice: work regularly with your child on vacation workbooks, for fifteen or twenty minutes a day, after lunch for instance, or when it is too hot to go to the beach. The most important thing is to take part in his or her vacation homework.

Cons of Vacation Workbooks: Learning through new activities

According to some psycho educationalists, holidays are necessary for the child to assimilate what he learnt during the year. As for children who have some difficulties at school, vacations are the right time for them to regain their self-esteem. Practicing new activities can do them good: sailing, roller-skating, playing tennis… all activities that help the child feel better about himself and capable of achieving, which is crucial for his success at school. Furthermore, these activities are opportunities to learn new things: we can learn what a point of inflection means, speeding on rollers down a slope, for example.

We can refine our sense of rotation, riding on the merry-go-round. We can also find the solution to a practical problem, through mathematics. All this can be done in a state of calm, good mood with vacational energy, which the child is likely to experience later on, in class.
#Family, #Education, #Vacation
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