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The Importance of Summer Learning and Tips for Building Skills for Back to School

Ensure your learner is ready for school with these tips from AIM Academy, PLUS get a discount for Summer at AIM 2023!

AIM Academy recently wrapped up its 2022 Summer Enrichment Camp with field trips, projects, and a parent showcase for our youngest campers. As you start thinking about back-to-school, it is important to reflect on the benefit of summer learning.  Three months is an awfully long time to go without practicing a sport, a musical instrument, or a foreign language. Why would academics be any different? 


All students, regardless of ability, experience some level of summer “learning loss” if they do not engage in academic instruction or practice over these critical months.  If adults stopped practicing a developing skill for three months, they would as well!


A summer program that focuses on academics with a fun, hands-on approach is an excellent way to engage students in summer learning.  This is especially true for students with learning differences or students who have been affected by the disruptions to their education over the last few years.  These students simply cannot afford to lose the knowledge they worked so hard to gain during the school year.


Tips for Building Oral Language & Fine Motor Skills for Back to School

In addition to summer programs, tutors and supplemental supports can be key elements in battling summer learning loss.  At AIM Academy, speech-language pathologists and occupational therapists have much to offer to students and families, both on campus and at home! Here are just a few of their favorite suggestions for building oral language and fine motor skills, so your student can hit the ground running in September.


boy and girl jumping in a sprinkler AIM Academy

Oral Language

Word/Guessing Games

  • Hedbanz, I Spy, Guess Who, Pictionary, Charades for younger students
  • Twenty Questions, Catchphrase, Taboo, Apples to Apples for older students


  • Build stories together by taking turns adding a detail
  • Play formal games like Tell Tales or Rory’s Story Cubes
  • Play improv games that focus on building off of what each person says

Read! Read! Read!

  • Read to them (even adolescents benefit from listening to stories read aloud!)
  • Read with them (take turns reading using books at their reading level)
  • Read without them (model an interest in reading, ask older students what they’re reading independently)

teenage boy at a desk reading a book

Fine Motor

Pencil Games

  • Trace letters/numbers or more detailed pictures
  • Complete mazes, stencils, or adult coloring books

Manipulating Objects

  • Use a turkey baster or eye dropper to transfer water or use chopsticks, clothes pins or tweezers to pick up small objects
  • Make it a race between family members or a challenge to move 100 objects as a team!

Molding and Modeling   

  • Use dough, putty or clay form shapes, letters, or sculptures
  • Create a scene where each family member contributes a character, object, or scenery

girl in a bucket of waterSave on Summer at AIM

Summer at AIM is a four-week program for Grades 1-12 that runs each July, with hands-on academics in the morning and optional camp activities in the afternoon.  AIM is currently offering a limited time discount to lock in the Summer 2022 rates for next July! Register today for Summer 2023 from Monday, July 3 to Friday, July 28 (Closed July 4).

AIM Academy is a coeducational, independent school in Conshohocken dedicated to providing extraordinary educational opportunities to children in grades 1-12 with language-based learning disabilities such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, and dyscalculia. Our rigorous, academic elementary, middle and high school programs, taught by experienced and creative faculty, incorporate evidence-based interventions in an arts-based learning environment that is college preparatory in scope and sequence. Our programs are designed to foster self-esteem and social responsibility both in the classroom and through our comprehensive athletics, extracurricular and summer camp programs.