This summer, middle and high school students are seizing the opportunity to gain school credit and enhance their overall educational experience by attending classes at Harker’s Summer Institute, which runs through Aug. 12. Classes at this year’s program are being offered in three categories: for-credit, upper school enrichment and middle school enrichment.
For-credit courses provide students an opportunity to earn academic credit through a variety of rigorous courses in math, arts and technology. The small class sizes ensure that students will receive the right amount of individual attention. Students enrolled in middle and upper school enrichment classes are taking advantage of programs that foster their interests. Classes in these programs include everything from pre-calculus to robotics to musical improvisation, all taught by dedicated, skillful and experience instructors.
J Gaston, who teaches graphic arts and photography, thinks students benefit both from the small class sizes and the longer class sessions. “The four-hour classes give the opportunity to get in-depth with projects and take the time that the process of art and design really requires,” he said. “We do end up getting more done, simply because the students can complete the projects without having to start and stop.”
Joshua Beavin, a Harker student who will start grade 12 in the fall, is enrolled in Gaston’s photography class and enjoys the time he is allowed to focus on the subject matter. “I think the summer’s a really good time to take these classes, especially because most of them require several hours to really focus on your work,” he said.
Another Harker student, Anisha Padwekar, who will be in grade 10 in the fall, is enrolled in Graphic Arts and AP Chemistry. She enjoys the small class sizes, and Summer Institute also allows her to experiment with other academic areas that she may be interested in exploring further in her later high school career. “I was planning on taking AP Studio Art in my senior year,” she said, “but I wasn’t sure what type of art I wanted to do.”
In addition to the academic courses, this year the Summer Institute also offers an after-class activity program, wherein students can remain on campus for a wide variety activities, including studying, swimming, crafts, games and more. Students can choose which weeks to sign up for the program to make sure that it meets their class schedules.