Summer Learning Can Be Fun

Well, we made it. “School” is wrapping up and so ends our first collective experiment with what we call “distance learning”. Distance learning worked better for some families than others, but no matter how well each kid did (or didn’t) manage with “school” this year, these months have been tough for many of us. 

Now that summer is here, we can look forward to more outside time, more freedom and more play. But things are not the same, especially for kids. Seeing friends from six feet apart is a start but we still have a long, strange summer ahead of us. And for parents who feel their kids missed out on a boatload lot of learning, it’s not so easy to close the books and call it a day.

In other years, we have talked about the “summer slide”, those two months of summer vacation when everything kids learned at school falls out of their heads and has to be stuffed back in again in September. Like so many things, the summer slide seems kind of quaint now. We are looking at potentially six months of lost learning, with no guarantee that things will improve much in the fall.

In our household we are not teachers, nor have we proven to be very effective homeschoolers. A lot of our efforts go into propping up our kids’ mental health, while simultaneously freaking out about how little they are learning. It’s not lost on us that this panic undermines our attempts to make them feel better.

And so we grasp at every opportunity to keep the kids learning in a way they enjoy. If they want to learn how to cook, we help them learn how to cook. If they want to read a book, we get them a book. We let them watch science and nature videos. We sign them up for Outschool classes they are excited about, like Lego engineering or dragon drawing or wildlife research. 

This mix of engagement and learning is what we strive for at Mail Order Mystery. Our mysteries are always fun, but we are serious about the learning, too. Not only do our mysteries get kids reading and solving problems, each mystery is a mix of fiction and fact so if kids are interested in learning more about a subject they can dive right in.

We are thrilled when we get reviews like this one:

The Enchanted Summer was AWESOME!
My daughter received this as a gift and she loved every second of solving the mystery! It was a very well-rounded activity full of reading, writing, and math practice that she didn't even realize she was doing! She is eagerly anticipating her next adventure!
-Robert S.

Or this review of the Case of the Missing Bigfoot, from Olivia at This West Coast Mommy. Olivia and her kids “get us” in a way that makes us feel great about what we do:

"Mail Order Mystery has created a completely immersive experience that fosters creativity and imagination, and engages kids in reading, problem-solving, and exercising their critical thinking skills without them even realizing it. I can’t recommend them highly enough, and my girls both agree."