Monday, September 14, 2015

Summer at SMART

This summer, our Scholars maximized their learning time by participating in rigorous academic programming four days a week and science-based field trips every Friday. Here's a recap of everything we've accomplished!

Scholars excited to be at Summer Program
This June and July, our Academic Summer Enrichment Program for rising 5th and 6th graders continued to expand to include 74 students at Mission Dolores Academy. We served 43 rising 5th graders: all of them applicants to SMART, allowing us to assess their fit for our programming while providing academic support. There were also 31 students in the rising 6th grade class, most of whom will begin their middle school experience at one of our partner schools in the fall. Students participated in math, English Language Arts, science, and history curriculum Mondays to Thursdays. On Fridays, they looked forward to exploring the Bay Area on science and environmentally-focused field trips (including excursions to the California Academy of Sciences and even to a laboratory at the University of Berkeley).

Students were divided into five classrooms, each with a credentialed teacher and a SMART staff member. Teachers joined us from Marin County Day School, The Hamlin School, Katherine Delmar Burke School, and various Bay Area public school classrooms. We were lucky to have such a stellar teaching staff - thank you for sharing your teachers with us! Some of our own SMART high school students also served as interns and elective teachers.

Tiffany on her first day of Barnard
SMART also provides services to help high school Scholars locate summer internships or learning experiences to further accelerate academic development and foster career skills necessary to make the transition to college. Tiffany, a rising senior, received a scholarship through Wishbone to participate in Entrepreneurs-in-Training. This was a 11-day program at Barnard College that focuses on developing business skills in high school girls. Tiffany worked on developing her own venture, building public speaking skills, and learned other facets of becoming a successful entrepreneur. Another scholar, Linda, participated in a pre-college course at Brown University focused on "Evil: The History of an Idea". This once-in-a-lifetime experience provided her with a deeper understanding of ethics, social class, and persecution in history, and developed skills necessary for analytical college humanities courses. 

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