Five ways to help fight summer learning loss

June 17, 2024

Five ways to help fight summer learning loss

By Liz Holden Boatwright

For kids, summertime can be a welcome and long-awaited respite from school. But among summer’s beach days, ice cream cones, and backyard games, the long break can also have an unwelcome side effect: summer learning loss, in which kids lose some of the knowledge and skills they gained during the school year. Research shows that summer learning loss in childhood plays a major factor in later academic achievement. And the same researchers found that summer enrichment activities, including museum visits, can help to prevent that “summer slide.”

Here are five ways to help fight learning loss this summer:

  • Be creative. At home, your kid’s creativity can stay engaged through arts and crafts, musical activities, and make-believe play. And here at the North Shore Children’s Museum, your kids can let their inner artist shine in our Makerspace, put on performances in the Storytelling room, or play pretend at our Farm to Table, Doctor’s Office, and Banking exhibits. Our Rotating Room exhibit this summer is the NSCM Diner, which allows kids to play restaurant with costumes, a kitchen, international play food, order pads for waiters, and a table with menus for customers.


  • Get social. For some kids, it can be a tough to lose the regular socialization the school year provides. Throughout the summer, we’ll be offering programs for kids of all ages – from an ice cream social to yoga and inclusive sports programs. And every other Wednesday through August 21, Legopalooza will feature a wide variety of Lego bricks in our party room all day. Get creative and meet other Lego enthusiasts around the tables. View our event calendar to see what’s coming soon.


  • Don’t forget about math. Parents and caregivers can help their kids retain their math skills by engaging them in simple exercises, such as making change or counting exits on the highway. And at the North Shore Children’s Museum, we can help. Our piggy bank exhibit, sponsored by North Shore Bank, lets kids be bank customers or tellers, make deposits and withdrawals, use ATMs, work the drive through window, and more! And kids can learn about ecology and local wildlife in our Bugs and Bees exhibit or about topography and the ocean in the Go Fish! Room.


  • Make a day of it. There are so many things to do in Peabody. After spending some time curled up with a book in our sensory room, continue your summer reading at the Peabody Institute Library, just a short walk away. Or visit Brooksby Farm, where kids can be outdoors, learn about farm animals, and work on their fine and gross motor skills picking fruit.



Museums – and their learning benefits – are for everyone. We have deals with more than 28 local libraries on the North Shore of Massachusetts, which offer 50% off tickets for up to give guests. We offer discounts for adults and children with WIC or EBT cards, and on Thursday afternoons through August 15, we’re also offering half-price admission to all visitors. We recommend purchasing tickets in advance here.