Frequently Asked Questions

Summer Ink 2022

Is Summer Ink a program for strong writers or for students who struggle with writing?

Both! Summer Ink’s approach to writing instruction, the WEX method, develops core skills that strengthen writing at every level. Because the writing process can feel overwhelming, struggling writers benefit from the WEX approach of tackling one specific skill at a time. For example, a student might be guided through Revision Assignments to understand how to add incisive dialogue to a scene, rather than simply “make it more lively.” Revision assignments are targeted to a particular task that a student can do using his or her own sentences as the base. While doing these specific tasks, and considering the writing that emerges, struggling writers notice that they become better communicators.

 

Stronger writers appreciate this kind of specific direction, too. While they may have a polished style or an intuitive grasp of writing, they typically can’t pick out their strongest sentences—the ones that create vivid images in a reader’s mind. Summer Ink gives them a chance to develop their ability to recognize their strongest writing and to experiment on that writing by applying specific skills. The camp also poses the additional challenge of writing on demand within a set period of time. All campers benefit from camp counselors’ frequent feedback, and from the individual attention that helps them tune in to their developing ideas and skills. 

What does a typical day look like?

Students arrive at Simmons between 8:00-8:30am and are greeted by Summer Ink staff. We typically start the day with an opening circle to get students excited about the day’s schedule and work on how to integrate a specific writing technique into our journal writing. We have short daily classroom instruction to help students gain new skills. Then, we usually start an activity such as a glass blowing demonstration, yoga class, or scavenger hunt around Chinatown. Students immediately write a journal entry about a particular moments of from the activity. We then have a lunch break, then engage in another activity in the afternoon, and write a second journal entry. Finally, everyone participates in a closing circle, which gives students a chance to share their writing and receive appreciative feedback from peers and counselors. We end the day at 3pm, and additional care for students is available from 3:00-5:00pm.

What is the cost of the 2022 program? Is Financial Aid available?

The cost of the 2022 program is $1,750.00. We welcome all campers and financial aid is available. To apply for Financial Aid, please click the “APPLY” button at the bottom of the website, then answer all questions. You will be asked to submit 2021 Form 1040.

How are the activities connected to the writing?

The activities have been carefully selected to almost guarantee that student participate, engage, and make creative observations. Following each activity, campers write in response to a prompt that asks them to reflect on a particular moment; e.g., a moment they felt clumsy or a moment they felt proud. The activities are a key component of our program and they motivate our students to write vividly and powerfully, putting to work the academic skills and habits that we cultivate.

Who will be teaching my child? What are the class sizes like?

Summer Ink employs a range of experienced and engaging counselors, all of whom are trained in the WEX method. Many of our counselors are also English Language Arts (ELA) teachers in the Boston area, typically in 5th through 9th grades. Each group of 24 group students will have 4 Senior Counselors, 2 of whom are teachers, and 2 of whom are college students. Additionally, there will be 4 Junior Counselors who are high school students that attended Summer Ink as students. The 24 students will be split into 4 writing groups, and there will be one Senior Counselor and 1 Junior Counselor per writing group. Counselors will read student writing at night, comment on the writing, and share their comments with students in the morning. There are many times when students receive one-on-one support from counselors.

We need to miss a day-how does that work?

We strongly encourage attendance every day during your scheduled session. The skills we teach build with daily practice, and your child will not get the full benefit of our program if they miss a day. We suggest that you avoid scheduling other activities during camp time whenever possible. That being said, we understand that sometimes missing camp is unavoidable and we will do our best to accommodate these situations.

Summer Ink will not be holding its summer program in 2024. We will update our site when the program is back. Thank you for your interest; please email info@summerink.org with any questions.
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