ARE SUM­MER SCHOOLS USE­FUL?

Friday - - Beauty -

Q My daugh­ter is keen to go to sum­mer school. Is it re­ally use­ful? And which one should she go to?

A Sum­mer is al­ready here and for stu­dents it comes with images of re­lax­ing and hav­ing fun. How­ever, for high school stu­dents, it might be use­ful to look at an ef­fec­tive sum­mer pro­gramme that will help you spend time con­struc­tively, teach you new things and bol­ster your CV for your col­lege ap­pli­ca­tions.

Be­hind ev­ery mag­i­cal sum­mer pro­gramme lies the fun­da­men­tals of build­ing up ex­pe­ri­en­tial learn­ing, so­cial de­vel­op­ment, char­ac­ter, civic en­gage­ment and soft skills, which will be ex­tremely ben­e­fi­cial in your pro­file.

While the tra­di­tional idea of a sum­mer camp would be fun ac­tiv­i­ties, camp­ing, back­pack­ing and the pool, to­day’s sum­mer pro­grammes are con­structed to meet the im­me­di­ate needs of col­lege­bound stu­dents.

There are a va­ri­ety of sum­mer pro­grammes to en­hance young adults’ cog­ni­tive skills and bol­ster their crit­i­cal think­ing, com­mu­ni­ca­tion, prob­lem­solv­ing abil­i­ties and self­con­fi­dence. All such sum­mer pro­grammes are in­ter­twined with fun ac­tiv­i­ties, sports and team-build­ing ses­sions to help you make new friends.

Taster pro­grammes of­fer stu­dents an in­sight into the course they want to pur­sue in col­lege. The pro­grammes are spe­cific to those sub­jects (for in­stance, physics or eco­nom­ics) and help stu­dents make in­formed de­ci­sions about the field of study they want to take up. Since they are fo­cused on aca­demics, many of these pro­grammes can help stu­dents gain cred­its for univer­sity, giv­ing them an early head start.

STEM pro­grammes – sci­ence, tech­nol­ogy, en­gi­neer­ing and math­e­mat­ics – pro­vide both prac­ti­cal and the­o­ret­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ence in this do­main.

For lan­guage pro­fi­ciency cour­ses, fo­cused on im­prov­ing a stu­dent’s sec­ond or third lan­guage, it’s ad­vised to travel to the coun­try where the lan­guage is spo­ken. Most of­ten these pro­grammes are blended with ex­tracur­ric­u­lar ac­tiv­i­ties such as sight­see­ing trips.

Then there are the Oxbridge sum­mer pro­grammes (or Ivy Leagues), for high-achiev­ing stu­dents who wish to study at Cam­bridge, Ox­ford or any of the Ivy Leagues. This pro­gramme would in­clude lead­er­ship, per­son­al­ity de­vel­op­ment, and other traits that top uni­ver­si­ties look for in ap­pli­cants. These pro­grammes also teach stu­dents strong es­say writ­ing skills that dra­mat­i­cally help their ap­pli­ca­tions. Many of these pro­grammes in­clude test prep cour­ses (such as for SAT) to truly hone a stu­dent’s chances of get­ting in.

SAN­JEEV VERMA is an in­ter­na­tional ed­u­ca­tion coun­sel­lor

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