Know Better, Do Better

Preventing the summer slide

As the school year comes to an end, many students look forward to a reprieve from studying. Summer is a much needed break for kids to relax, explore the outdoors, find new hobbies and spend time with friends and family. However, there’s a common unintended consequence of this break: the summer slide. By the time fall rolls around, many students’ reading comprehension and math levels decrease significantly. Studies estimate they lose about one month worth of learning. 

It’s important for students to continue some form of education to avoid a backslide and have an easier transition back to school in the fall. Researchers suggest students engage in some form of structured learning in the summer months to avoid learning loss. The best programs are ones with effective teachers, a hands-on curriculum and consistent attendance. 

Summer education can involve a wide variety of subjects and topics. The main goal is to learn something new and challenge yourself, which will help you stay mentally sharp. 

Here are just a few of the dozens of classes coming up this summer at Absolute Value Academy. Our exceptional teachers share their expertise in a variety of subjects. Each course helps combat the dreaded summer slide–and students have fun while doing it!

  1. Garage Band and Songwriting– Learn how to craft music from scratch using a fully-equipped digital music studio!
  2. Code Breakers – Master some of the world’s most famous codes and the math used to crack them. (You’ll even create your own secret codes and ciphers.)
  3. Computer Engineering – Build circuits, create complex computer programs and use a microcontroller with C++ code.
  4. Global Threat Simulation Game – In this simulation camp, you will use your analytical skills to foil a set of plots by a (fictional) global terrorist organization.
  5. Chess Club – Develop your chess skills and learn new strategies to become a chess pro. 
  6. Python Coding with Sphero – Study Python, one of the most in-demand coding languages in the world! Students even get to code their own Sphero BOLT robots.
  7. Creating Your Own Secret Language – Students ages 10-12 will master the skills of secret communication. They’ll create a new language, using cyphers and unique alphabets.
  8. Digital Art and Animation – Learn to bring your drawings to life with Procreate, using an iPad. A unique skill to learn for a young artist.
  9. Digital Moviemaking and Editing – For students interested in films, this camp provides a hands-on experience of filmmaking, from storyboarding to production. 
  10. Dungeons & Dragons – Master the popular fantasy role-playing game with new friends, while strengthening your problem-solving and teamwork skills. 
  11. Gaming and Programming with Fortnite – Want to learn more about your favorite video game? This is the place. Students learn about the computer science behind Fortnite and receive individualized instruction to improve their gameplay. 
  12. Math Mania – This class is just what it sounds like…a super-popular camp filled with challenges, critical thinking exercises and new math games!
  13. Spelling Bee – Strengthen your spelling and public speaking skills, while engaging in a fun competition.
  14. Spy Camp – The most popular camp of the summer is Spy Camp. Learn the ins and outs of espionage, the intelligence field and lab experiments. 


Head to our website to find out more about our summer programs! Our camps are a fantastic way to keep young minds active during the summer break, in between those trips to Kennywood and vacations to the beach. 

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Home News Untraditional tutoring You may have noticed we changed our name recently, from Absolute Value Tutoring, to Absolute Value Academy. We …

  Preventing the summer slide As the school year comes to an end, many students look forward to a reprieve from studying. …

Lifelong Learning

The importance of continuing to learn as you age cannot be overstated. Countless studies show the cognitive and social benefits for older adults who learn new skills and topics. During a recent study, researchers tested the memory and attention span of older adults before and after enrolling in weekly classes. The results were remarkable. After completing courses on language, art, technology and more, the students scored much higher in cognitive tests and continued to show long-term improvements. This is good news, especially in a country where 73% of adults consider themselves “lifelong learners.” People have plenty of reasons to continue their education in adulthood. Learning something new can help you land an exciting job or earn a promotion, find a new hobby, strengthen social connections and improve overall wellness. Many people believe classes are for full-time students in school pursuing a degree, whether that be a high school diploma or a PhD. The truth is, continuing education courses are for everyone, regardless of the end goal. At Absolute Value Academy, the courses go far beyond ‘traditional tutoring.’ Someone looking to learn about art can take a course on digital illustration or filmmaking. People who need help using technology — whether it’s how to use an iPhone or how to keep your private information secure online — can benefit from lessons. Even taking a class to become a master chess player is a way to engage your mind as a lifelong learner. No matter what you decide to study, scientists have made it clear: the best way to stay sharp as you age is to learn something new. Absolute Value Academy is here to help you do just that.

Home News Rachel is the senior editor for Mt. Lebanon Magazine and Assistant Public Information Officer for Mt. Lebanon Municipality. She is …