Upper-School Scholarship Skills Workshop
Term: Summer 2021
Target Grades: 9–12
Schedule: 2x / week, 60–75 min.
Section 1, June 7–July 7 (10 sessions): M/W 10:00 a.m. ET with Peter Bradshaw
Section 2, June 8–July 8 (10 sessions): T/Th 10:00 a.m. ET with Peter Bradshaw
Section 3, June 7–July 7 (10 sessions): M/W 9:00 a.m. ET with Valerie Bredow
Section 4, June 8–July 8 (10 sessions): T/Th 9:00 a.m. ET with Valerie Bredow
The Upper-School Scholarship Skills summer course will have a dual focus on advanced reading and productivity skills.
Advanced Reading Skills
Formal reading instruction is often limited to basic literacy skills, which are frequently mastered by 6th grade. In addition to elementary reading (“decoding”) skills, students need to develop inspectional, analytical, and synoptical reading skills. In this summer course, we will practice together the skills presented in Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren’s work How to Read a Book, using selections from the Great Books of the Western World. In this manner, students will become better prepared to tackle the wide variety of texts that they will encounter in their courses: textbooks, nonfiction, novels, poems, plays, histories, essays, and more.
I have personally benefited from many books and productivity strategies, and I don’t think there is one perfect system that fits every person. Rather than requiring students to follow a specific system, I will offer basic principles and suggest ways that students can adapt them to their preferences and life situations. These will include strategies for how to:
- Budget time
- Maintain a calendar
- Keep a log or journal
- Manage complex projects
- Create and update task lists
- Plan days, weeks, months, years, and beyond
- Track habits
- Establish routines
Summer Reading Groups are less formal than the yearlong courses, but students are still expected to participate and come to our meetings prepared. While there will be some reading assignments from How to Read a Book, it is a long text and we won’t read it cover to cover. Much of the work in the course will be hands-on practice in productivity. Students will set up a planner, put together and maintain a personal calendar, practice planning long-term projects, track task completion, and budget time.
Sections 3 and 4
Course Materials Coming Soon!
Peter Bradshaw grew up on land in the warm chaparral of Southern California. He was introduced to the great works of the Western world through a Great Books program in high school. Peter studied English Literature at Covenant College and hopes to complete his Master’s through a distance program at New Saint Andrews College in the Summer of 2020. Since graduating from Covenant, Peter has taught a range of subjects over the past six years. He particularly enjoys teaching Literature, History, Formal Logic, and Rhetoric. When not in the classroom he enjoys painting, poetry, guitar, and watching the little unnoticed things of the world. He and his wife are expecting their first child at the end of March. He currently lives and teaches in Cairo, Egypt and is planning on enrolling in a Fluency of Ancient Greek program offered by the Polis Institute in Jerusalem in September, 2020. firstname.lastname@example.org
Valerie Bredow holds a BA in French and Spanish from Hillsdale College. For more than 15 years, she worked as a paralegal for law firms in the United States and in France, working in litigation and translating documents. After having children, she turned her attention toward teaching at a classical Christian school in Michigan. She loves watching students blossom into virtuous, persuasive writers and speakers. When she is not teaching, Mrs. Bredow can be found homeschooling her four children, cooking, reading, and playing games. email@example.com
High-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with a download/upload speed of 5/1 Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.
Webcam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer.
Headset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.
Zoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use. To download Zoom:
- Visit zoom.us/download.
- Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
- Open and run the installer on your computer.
- In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.
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This registration will be finalized when the student's placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.