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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Default Summer school anyone?

    DS1 is a young 8th grader (Aug birthday) and struggles with schoolwork (mostly study skills, organization, homework completing but also math). We are thinking of sending him to a 5-week summer program at a local-ish boarding school (1-2 hrs away from home). Has anyone done this or considered any type of summer course for their child? It's kind of combined summer camp + 1 academic class + study skills.

    FWIW, we are also considering having him apply to boarding schools within our geographical area (<3 hrs away from home) and have him start by repeating 9th grade there. Our options for local schooling beyond his current private school are limited because of travel time to/from school.
    Karen
    -----------
    Mom to 2 hockey-playing, Lego-loving boys DS1 2003 & DS2 2005

  2. #2
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    Default

    I taught Summer School at a prestigious prep school one summer. The kids actually had a lot of fun. It was 4-6 weeks long. They took 1 or 2 classes plus an elective and we did fun things with them. They stayed in the dorms. It was very nice. If you are thinking of having him attend boarding school, it would be a nice intro to what it is like.

    DS does math tutoring 2x a week for 6 weeks every summer because with his learning disability he needs to keep up on math or it is a disaster when school starts. So I am not opposed to summer work for kids. As long as it is fun too.
    Mom to:
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    DD '05
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    RIP Andy, the furry first child, 1996-2012

    "The task of any religion is not to tell us who we are entitled to hate but to teach us who we are required to love."

  3. #3
    rin is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    Based on personal experience, I think boarding school for high school can be an absolutely fantastic experience, provided the school is a good fit for the child. It's great that it would be semi-local, so he could presumably come home for weekends/holidays/special family events. I know you weren't asking about boarding school in general, but wanted to chime in!

    My kids are still little, so we don't have any experience with the kind of program you're talking about, but I honestly don't see any downside to it provided you like the sound of the program in general and feel it would be a good match for what he's needing. I think it sounds like it could be a lot of fun, a good social experience, and could provide some awesome targeted academic exposure. I would absolutely consider it for one of my kids in the circumstances you describe. What are his thoughts on the program? Does he feel like it would be a remedial type experience, or more of a value-added opportunity? Do you have any sense for what the other kids attending the camp might be like?

  4. #4
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    I went to boarding school myself and loved it!


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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
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    Default

    Thanks for the replies. I only know a few kids with boarding school experience and they were all recruited for sports. While our son does play hockey at the club level, he's not an elite player and we aren't expecting any recruitment. My dream for him would be to find a school where he will be able to play at the varsity level, but not have it be the sole reason for his attendance at the school, kwim?

    DS1 is so dependent on me for everything and I'm really pushing him to be more independent. He CAN do things (homework, laundry, meals) on his own, he just wants my attention. He's always been like this and it's a real struggle for us as a family. I want to use the 5 week program as sort of a test to see how he does away from home. He really needs to gain confidence in his own abilities. He's very intelligent but not yet a hard worker (unless it's something he really enjoys - like engineering/science). He could stand to have addition instruction in Algebra right now as he didn't have a good Pre-Algebra teacher and is struggling a bit in (honors) Algebra 1. He also needs help with study skills as he hasn't had to study much up until this point.

    The boarding schools we are looking at are all within 4 hrs - we are lucky in that there are tons of them to choose from - and we aren't talking Exeter either lol. Just somewhere that he can be comfortable being himself, yet be challenged and become independent and successful. His current school isn't doing that for him and we don't have options short of commuting an hour each way or taking the train into Boston. Some kids in our area do this, but it wouldn't be a good fit for our son.

    Not 100% sure how my son feels about the summer programs yet. He's opposed to summer "school" (unsurprisingly) but we are selling it as more of a camp with some school aspects. The ones we are looking at have plenty of fun time included We are looking specifically at Cushing Academy and Brewster Academy (which is on Lake Winnipesaukee in NH).

    If you don't mind sharing, could you tell me where you all went? Northeast schools or elsewhere?
    Karen
    -----------
    Mom to 2 hockey-playing, Lego-loving boys DS1 2003 & DS2 2005

  6. #6
    cuca_ is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    I did not go to boarding school, but spent a summer at Exeter. It was a very fun summer. I also know people who did the summer program at Cushing and loved it -- of course that was many years ago. I also went to summer camp on Lake Winnipesaukee, and that is such a beautiful area!


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