EL Education Summer Guidance and K-3 Summer Skills 2021 | EL Education Curriculum

EL Education Summer Guidance and K-3 Summer Skills 2021

Last Updated: June 15th, 2021

To address unfinished learning from the 2019-20 and 2020-21 academic years, and to prepare students for the 2021-22 academic year, many schools and districts are implementing summer programs with a specific focus on language arts.

This guidance has been designed to support schools and districts implementing the EL Education K-8 Language Arts curriculum so they can effectively utilize the curriculum resources in summer school programs or through tutoring.


K-8 Summer Guidance Overview

  • Students' experiences over the past year will be varied in terms of both learning and social and emotional experiences.
  • Ensure adequate time to set up routines and norms.
  • For Grades K-3: prioritize reading foundational skills. 
  • For Grades 4-8: focus on expanding opportunities for writing and for speaking and listening.

General Guidance

For those returning to in-person learning, it is important to remember that children's learning and social and emotional experiences will be varied since schools began to close due to COVID-19. Some students' experiences will be positive, and some quite the opposite, but all are real and an important part of their stories as they come back to a classroom environment. If students do wish to share their experiences with others, remind them of the habit of working to become ethical people, including empathy and compassion, as they listen to one another.

The following guidelines highlight where students may have challenges:

  • This may be the first time students are returning to a school environment since schools closed in March 2020. As a result, significant time and attention may need to be given to supporting their social and emotional needs and well-being. Younger learners in particular may not remember what it is like to be at school and might need support being away from family members and navigating the norms, routines, and social interactions that were so familiar before. Some students may also be experiencing trauma as a result of a lack of access to school supports and resources during school closures.  
  • Students may have spent a considerable amount of time without opportunities to interact or collaborate with peers, so just as with the beginning of a school year after summer break, allocate sufficient time at the beginning of the program to establish norms and expectations and to reintroduce the habits of character: working to become an effective learner, working to become an ethical person, and working to contribute to a better world.

  • Student routines during remote learning might have been very different from those at school. For example, they may have become accustomed to getting up and eating snacks and meals at different times. Changes to their schedule, or less flexibility and freedom, may induce anxiety in students. It may also mean that they have less or more energy at different times of the day. Consider asking parents about their children's routines during remote learning to anticipate where there may be challenges, and identify where there can be more flexibility and freedom in the structure of the summer program to support students in gradually adapting to the new routines. Walk students through the routines they can expect each day. Having a visible routine posted in the space, with agenda items that can be checked off, will support students in seeing a clear path to the end of each day when they can reconnect with family members.

  • While doing remote learning, students may have become accustomed to shorter bursts of synchronous learning, followed by asynchronous learning that they could schedule according to their own preferences. As a result, they may need to gradually build stamina to focus for longer durations of synchronous work time. Consider dividing learning into shorter, manageable chunks and building in frequent stretch and movement breaks. Use a timer and provide regular time reminders, starting with very short bursts and gradually increasing the time students are engaged in focused learning without a break.

K-3 Summer Skills - New!

To close learning opportunity gaps and to prepare students for the 2021-22 academic year, many schools and districts are implementing summer programs with a specific focus on language arts. In support of this need, EL Education has developed a K-3 Summer Skills program to accelerate reading foundational skills, offering students a chance to practice their literacy skills mixed in with purposeful play, storytelling, and creative expression. This program is designed for primary students and based on EL Education's comprehensive Language Arts Curriculum. The K-3 Summer Skills materials will be available for free on our Curriculum Website from June 11th through August 31st, 2021.

View a recording of the 90-minute WePD session held on June 11th to learn how to support K-3 students as they accelerate learning in foundational reading skills using the newly created EL Education K-3 Summer Skills program:

WePD K-3 Summer Skills Recording

Use the table and buttons below to access K-3 Skills Summer materials by grade and week.

PLEASE NOTE: All materials are view-only. You may make an editable copy or directly download for your use in classrooms. Please do not request edit access to use these public materials.

K-3 Summer Skills Overview     Grades K-3 Guidance Documents 

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