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May 22, 2024

XtraMath: Your Tool to Fight Against Summer Learning Loss


Nothing quite compares to the joy and satisfaction of wrapping up another school year. After months of dedication, crafting lessons, and nurturing skills, it's rewarding to watch students bask in the glow of accomplishment. But then, summer rolls around, and a familiar challenge looms—summer learning loss. It's upsetting to see students return in the fall less prepared than when they left, struggling to recall what they had previously mastered, particularly in math fact fluency.

An American Educational Research Association study revealed a harsh reality: students can lose up to 39% of their school year gains during summer, with math taking the hardest hit. Also, the Harvard Graduate School of Education team conducted a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of K–12 summer math programs in the U.S., motivated by the decline in math proficiency exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Highlighting programs specifically tailored to math learning shows the strongest outcomes and suggests a need for targeted academic interventions, indicating that these programs could bridge educational gaps widened by the pandemic. The research also highlights the potential of summer programs to improve both academic and non-academic outcomes, suggesting that a balanced approach to summer activities could support overall student wellness and learning recovery. However, enhancing summer learning involves more than just enrichment programs; it requires online tools that are both engaging and rewarding.

XtraMath shines a light on how to keep the fire of learning alive even when the school year ends! Requiring just 10 minutes a day! XtraMath is an excellent resource for educators and parents looking to maximize summer learning opportunities, ensuring students continue to make gains in math rather than backsliding during the off-school months. XtraMath stands out as an ideal complement to traditional summer programs, offering a practical solution to keep the educational flame burning bright all summer.

As an educator, you have the power to turn summer break into an opportunity for students to make learning gains in math instead of losing skills. Why not make this summer the best for your students and their families with XtraMath?

Step-by-Step Guide to Implementing XtraMath This Summer

1. Kickstart With Communication: Print and Send Home Parent Flyers

Before the school year ends, send flyers home or email their families so they can practice XtraMath at home during the summer. These flyers are available from your Teacher Dashboard or your Class Setup Checklist. Suggest parents a balanced approach to summer activities, including free play time and 10 minutes of daily XtraMath practice to support student wellness and learning recovery. Additionally, provide some ideas to parents to motivate their children to engage in the Xtramath daily practice.

2. Utilize Data: Review Your Class and Student Reports

Take advantage of XtraMath's Class Reports to analyze your students' performance. Utilize these insights to customize summer math activities tailored to address each student's needs effectively. For a closer look at individual performance, refer to the Student Report, which includes comprehensive data on progress in each arithmetic operation the student has worked on during the school year. These tools will assist you in creating effective summer math plans that reinforce and enhance students' math fact skills.

3. Personalize Learning: Assign Program Based on Identified Gaps

Armed with data from the previous step, design an individual pathway for each student to follow during the summer at home. Then, choose and assign XtraMath “Custom Programs” specifically targeting the identified gaps.  For example, you can select “Expanded Multiplication Program,”  with facts up to 12’s and a six-second threshold, for students going to fourth grade next school year.  Personalizing these assignments ensures that students spend time reinforcing the practice and recalling math facts they need the most help with, making their practice sessions productive and focused.

4. Build Excitement: Get Students Enthusiastic About Summer Learning

Encouraging a positive mindset toward summer math practice can be challenging, but creating excitement around it can make a big difference. One effective way to do this is by outlining to students how just 10 minutes of daily practice on Xtramath can benefit them. You can discuss how XtraMath can be like a game where they can beat their scores, set personal records, and enter the new school year as XtraMath Champions! 

It's also a good idea to suggest to parents to create a fun challenge for their kids to keep them engaged while using XtraMath. One of our long-time users, Alyssa, a 5th-grade Teacher from California, came up with a fun way to motivate her students to beat their own records with a 6-second club and a 3-second club. Parents can use a challenge like this to encourage their kids throughout the summer to try to be part of the 3-second club before school starts again. They can use small rewards like candy, extra playtime, or your kid's favorite snack to incentivize them. This will make them more motivated and eager to practice math during the summer.


Summer doesn't have to be a time when students lose their math skills. By following our four-step approach, you can transform the summer season into a fun and progressive opportunity for your students. This will prevent the summer slide, boost their confidence, and reduce their math anxiety. So, are you ready to make summer learning enjoyable and effective? Start with XtraMath today!

Jackeline Paz Orcutt

Product Marketing Manager