Are you and your students ready for that final bell to ring? The countdown to summer is officially on! While this is an exciting time of year, it’s natural as a teacher to feel concerned about keeping your students on task in the final days of school. These 8 summer activities for kindergarten will help you engage your learners and beat that pesky summer slide.
#1: Sidewalk Chalk Word Family Ladders
The first summer activity for kindergarten takes you and your students outside for some colorful word family practice. To begin, draw a simple 5-rung ladder on the sidewalk using sidewalk chalk. Next, write a CVC word on the bottom rung of the ladder.
Taking turns, tell the student to change the beginning sound to make a new word and write it on the next rung of the ladder. The next student comes up, listens to the directions, and writes the next word. This continues until the ladder is full.
Once the ladder is complete, have all of your students recite the word family words on the ladder. You can also practice phoneme substitution with this activity by directing students to change the beginning or ending sound to make a new word.
Another option is to guide your students to help them draw their own individual ladders. Then, all students can complete the word ladder activity at the same time in a whole group setting.
To make this activity more challenging, you can include up to 10 rungs on your ladder and practice nonsense words as well.
#2: Ice Cream Cone Addition/Subtraction
To prepare the ice cream cones, cut out 10 medium triangles of tan or brown construction paper. Then write 1 addition or subtraction sentence within 10 on each triangle. For mixed practice, you can write a combination of addition and subtraction sentences within 10 on the triangles.
When all of the cones are prepped, mix them up face down in a stack. To play, students will draw a cone, read the addition or subtraction sentence, and model it with colored pom poms.
As they model the number sentence, they’ll place the pom poms to build an ice cream cone. For addition sentences, use 2 colors of pom poms to represent each addend.
For extra fine motor practice, students can use jumbo tweezers to place the poms poms on the cone. This activity can easily be stored in a zip top baggie and reused as a small group activity or summer math center game.
#3: Summer Review
At the end of the school year, it’s important to give students ample opportunities for spiral review. The summer activities for kindergarten found in this Kindergarten Summer Review are the perfect way to engage your students in the last weeks of school and all summer long.
Feel confident knowing that your students are getting in meaningful skill practice with over 120 pages of math and literacy review that you don’t have to a) prep or b) search high and low for to put together yourself!
This summer review resource is comprehensive and can be used at school or sent home with your students to practice over the summer.
#4: Summer Sounds
Practice key reading skills all summer long with this fun Summer Sounds game. Students will roll a dot cube and find a space that matches the code on the side of the game board. They’ll read the CVCe word family word and cover a picture that belongs in that word family.
They’ll gain a lot of CVCe word practice as they play independently. To make it a game, partner your students up and they can play a Summer Sounds Bump game! The goal is to cover the most spaces while trying not to get bumped off the game board by their opponent.
#5: Sand Pail Sight Words
Line up sand pails or plastic buckets in a pyramid shape. Write sight words on notecards and fold them, placing a few sight words inside each pail.
Students will take turns tossing a small ball, aiming to land in one of the pails. They’ll draw a sight word notecard from the pail they landed in, read the sight word, and spell it aloud. To extend the learning, they can even say a sentence using that word.
If they say it and spell it correctly, they get a point and get to keep the sight word card. If they don’t, it goes back in the pail. Students can keep track of their score by counting the sight word cards in their hand or by using tally marks with sidewalk chalk.
You can play this game with teen numbers, comparing numbers with <, >, =, CVC words, word families, etc. Simply write whichever words or skills you’d like to practice on the notecards. You can even use this as a review game by putting notecards with a different skill in each sand pail.
#6: Summer Boom Cards
One of the best summer activities for kindergarten is one that students can do at school or at home over the summer…Digital Summer Boom Cards! These Boom Cards give students 8 different decks of math and literacy skill practice, all in exciting summer themes.
Your students will be successful as they practice with audio directions, audio picture names, and immediate feedback. This is the perfect independent activity for students to do, especially on those stormy summer days.
- CVC or CVCe Words
- CCVC Sentences
- CVCe Word Match
- Beginning Blends
- Comparing Numbers Using <, >, =
- Graphing and Data
- Counting by 5s and 10s
- Fluency within 5
#7: Silly Summer Stories
Writing is one of those skills that can easily fall victim to the summer slide if not practiced. Kids love to tell stories of their summer adventures, so why not turn that into a fun writing prompt activity?
To begin, brainstorm a list of summer-themed words and write them on the whiteboard. You can even go on a walk outside or through the classroom to find summer-themed objects to record. Ask students to pick 3 words to write at the top of their writing paper.
Then, they’ll write a silly story using the 3 words they chose. Encourage your students to add details to their silly summer stories and focus on proper writing conventions.
When they’ve finished writing, they can illustrate their story. To work on speaking and listening skills, they can take turns reading their stories to the class.
#8: Pool Noodle Base 10
To prepare this activity, you’ll need 6 foam pool noodles. Take 5 of the pool noodles and cut them in half, making 10 pieces in all. This will represent the 10s. Next, take the remaining pool noodle and cut it into 10 smaller pieces, about 2 inches each. This will represent the 1s.
Write different numbers between 0-100 on notecards. Students will take turns drawing a notecard and representing the number using the pool noodle base 10 pieces.
Another way to play is to write numbers on notecards in base 10 form, such as 2 tens and 3 ones. Students will then build the number using the pool noodles and write the number in standard form using sidewalk chalk, such as 23.
Whether you do these summer activities for kindergarten before school gets out, during summer school, or pass them along to your students’ families for ideas to do together over the summer, you can feel good knowing your students are keeping their skills fresh and having fun.