Summer Camp Courses - Grade 7-8

The summer camp for rising 7th and 8th graders will focus on Thomas Jefferson High School (TJ) test preparation. The class size is limited to 16 students. It is very important to prepare TJ test early. Students don't have to wait for reaching 8th grade to start preparation. The small-group class instruction over a period of time is much more effective than crash courses.

Students will be introduced to the concepts needed to do well on this test, and they will learn ways to effectively approach difficult aspects of the test, while reinforcing their skills in math, logic, and verbal reasoning. TJ Prep program consists of 4.5 hours class daily, and is divided into three sections: 1.5-hours Verbal, 1.5-hours Writing and 1.5-hours Math. Materials include the official T.J. Exam study guide, two SHSAT preparation guides, and other test review handouts.

Math:

This course will cover topics: Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II. Students will learn problem solving techniques and critical reasoning skills necessary for the math problems on the TJ test. We will administer a 20-25 questions test that will take between 25 to 30 minutes and is similar in content to the TJ math test twice a week. After grading and reviewing the missed test questions, we will discuss speed math strategies, and answer students' questions. Some questions are easy at the beginning. Then they get progressively harder toward the end. Class will emphasize speed, accuracy, and math remediation.

Verbal:

The verbal review includes scrambled paragraph problems, logical reasoning questions, and reading comprehension exercises. Students will progress their levels of vocabulary while learning important reading comprehension skills. Students will read several passages and answer the associated questions. The instructor will discuss errors and give strategies for improving speed, comprehension, and accuracy. Students at this age need repetition. We repeat concepts frequently, as needed, to help emphasize efficient reading and effective comprehension.

Writing:

The essay review includes strategies for writing effective essays under time pressure. The instructor starts off with some discussion of what TJ is looking for in the essays. If necessary, the instructor can give some background information about a topic, have the student write a 20-30 minutes essay on a prompt, and discuss the essays with students together. During these drills the instructor will discuss some topics for the TJ admissions test essay, give pointers for writing cogently, and introduce the prompt.

These courses consist of two portions: first covering the major concepts for the exam in detail, second supplemented with numerous practice problems as well as homework assignments.

Students will be given short quizzes every session to keep track of their progress. The questions on the quiz cover the topics taught in the previous class. Parents are advised to monitor these quiz scores since this is an effective way of making sure that students are absorbing the information presented in class and benefiting from it.