Summer 2021 Senior Forum
9th – 12th
Santa Clara University, San Jose, CA
University of San Diego, San Diego, CA
University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
SuperCamp’s Senior Forum is a summer program for students entering grades 9 to 12. Senior Forum is a transformational experience for high school students, most of whom are feeling the stresses of needing to achieve good grades, but who are doing so as much for their parents as for themselves. This “have to” feeling changes at SuperCamp, as students get inspired and self-motivated to want to learn and to set and achieve goals.
One of the great things about attending SuperCamp is that we provide each student with an established path for personal growth and learning. Students who attend Senior Forum have the opportunity to return the next year on the Senior Forum Leadership Team. “L-Team” takes students deeper into the learning and life skills curriculum, while incorporating leadership skills that help them develop their personal leadership style.
Our key areas of focus are the following:
Students gain specialized academic strategies applicable in any learning situation. Topics covered include effective reading and writing strategies, study skills, creative thinking, meaningful and memorable note-taking, and memorization tools. Our goal is to empower students to excel in all subjects.
Students experience many personal insights during their time at SuperCamp. We help them build self-confidence and motivation and teach them the value of strong relationships. Topics covered include positive communication, self-reflection, habit formation, self-expression, and FIMAGE (fear of image). We inspire students to value themselves and to believe in their ability to excel in all areas of their lives.
Leadership development is a priority throughout SuperCamp. It begins with first-year campers and, in Senior Forum, it continues with returning students who can join our Leadership Team, which supports further leadership skills development. SuperCamp grads that are at least rising 10th-grade students also have the option of attending Leadership Forum.
Breaking through self-imposed personal fears and limitations is a vital learning and growth experience for students. Topics include risk-taking, trust, comfort zone vs. learning zone, and setting goals that reflect personal values and beliefs. Students participate in an outdoor challenge course and a barrier breaking activity, both of which produce strong feelings that they are capable of doing anything they set their mind to.
The 8 Keys of Excellence are integrated into all aspects of the Senior Forum program. These Keys teach students to match their behavior with their values, learn from their mistakes, speak honestly and kindly, make the most of every moment, make their dreams happen, take responsibility for their actions, be flexible, and live their best life. When students embrace these principles, they are inspired to strive for personal excellence.
We believe that to be effective learning must be fun. At SuperCamp we utilize research-based educational practices to create a joyful and engaging learning environment. We include music, fun activities, entertaining skits, and energetic games, and students participate in their learning at SuperCamp, they don’t just observe! We know that when learning is meaningful, memorable, and joyful, students excel.
10 DAY PROGRAM - OVERVIEW
As you read these overviews of each day at SuperCamp, note that our academic lessons and other learning activities are designed to engage students, build their curiosity, and gain their active participation. Music and movement help make learning a joyful and memorable experience.
On opening day, students are either met at the airport by our staff or are brought to registration by their parents. After registration students and parents say goodbye as the students begin activities that get them interacting with other campers and staff. Music soon fills the room as team leaders facilitate “get to know you” activities. Students get an overview of the week ahead, participate in a team-building activity, and learn their first memory strategy. After dinner students are introduced to the 8 Keys of Excellence, the guiding principles at the core of SuperCamp, and focus on the Key of Balance—about making choices that enable us to live our best life. During team time each student has an opportunity to tell others a little about themselves, and then they experience their first closing session that includes journal time, shares, announcements, and a Let-It-Go song.
Teams are a critical part of the SuperCamp culture. On day two students begin to build their team spirit and camaraderie increases. During the morning we explore the Key of This Is It—making the most of every moment and keeping a positive attitude. We also look at “Big Brain Basics” this morning and students begin to learn about how their brain works in the learning process and how to utilize this knowledge in the classroom. They learn brain-friendly strategies for focusing their attention while learning (alpha brainwave state), and two note-taking strategies. In the afternoon students learn about the growth (and fun!) they can experience when they move out of their comfort zones and let go of their FIMAGE (fear of image). We also look at the formation of positive habits. After dinner students learn about the importance of listening skills in communication, and also consider “I messages.”
This morning we look at the Key of Speak with Good Purpose—about the power of words and speaking with honest and kind intentions—as well as the importance of maintaining positive relationships. In academic break-out sessions that begin today, students are coached in clear communication, brain basics, and creative thinking. After lunch students learn specific communication strategies to maintain positive relationships. In the evening session students participate in a team-building activity where they learn more about each other as they each share something about themselves that will help others to know them better. Finally, in our closing session students learn about using a “theta scan’ to help their brain move information from short-term to long-term memory while they sleep!
In a fun maze activity on the morning of day four, students learn first-hand about the Key of Failure Leads to Success and the concept that failure = feedback. This is followed by academic break-out sessions where students are coached in the subjects noted above for day three. Later students participate in a series of trust and confidence-building activities and consider what they can learn about themselves and about life during tomorrow’s Outdoor Adventure Day.
Today’s Outdoor Adventure Day is a metaphor for life. Students challenge themselves to move out of their comfort zones in a safe physical environment where teammates/friends cheer each other on to success. As participants find the inner courage to step out onto a high wire and climb to the top of a pole, they start to experience a new level of confidence in their ability to take risks and succeed. In the evening, students share their “I can do it” breakthroughs and celebrate their achievements.
Today students build on the feeling of exhilaration from Outdoor Adventure Day and learn how to translate their physical accomplishments into the mental arena of the academic world. Day six is a big day as students realize the classroom is no different from the high ropes and requires the same combination of risk and fear to be successful. This morning we explore the Key of Ownership and the concept of “living above the line,” helping students learn the importance of taking responsibility for their words and actions. In our morning and afternoon sessions today we focus on academics including reading (to increase speed and comprehension), the Creative Discovery Process (a technique that helps students generate and refine ideas), and brain-friendly strategies for review, focus, and note-taking. After dinner students build self-awareness as we look at the masks we all wear and labels—self-labels, labels we give others, and the labels others give us—and how to handle them.
This morning we learn about the Key of Integrity and how to make sure that the way we live our life is a true reflection of what we value. And then we learn, learn, learn! Today students dive deeper into academics and experience success moments that build their competence as well as their confidence. Their reading speed and comprehension increases, they acquire invaluable new learning strategies, and they learn to effectively handle a variety of writing assignments. After dinner we consider one of the most important relationships we have, that of the child and their parent/guardian.
In our exploration of the Key of Flexibility this morning, students learn about the value of being willing to consider a different approach when something isn’t working! In our morning and afternoon sessions today we’re still focused on academics and considerable learning takes place! In the evening students are given an opportunity to explore their inner self, find their voice, and express themselves through poetry.
This morning we explore the Key of Commitment and then learn about the importance of commitment in goal-setting with a focus on how to set achievable goals. Students also prepare for the “Trade Show” to be held during the Parent Workshop tomorrow, where they will teach parents the skills they learned at SuperCamp. After lunch, we return to goals and with one goal in mind, students participate in a barrier-breaking activity to break through whatever obstacles they perceive may be stopping them from achieving their goal.
We start today with a look at tips for creating a smooth transition from SuperCamp to home and effective utilization of new SuperCamp skills. This is followed by the Parent Workshop and the “Trade Show,” and then during the emotional closing ceremony, students share SuperCamp moments that stand out for them. Students have learned a lot about themselves, about learning, and about life, and today their transformative SuperCamp experience comes to a close. The closing ceremony ends with great joy and a few tears shared with new friends, parents, and staff members as students celebrate their experience and their growth.
A Typical Day at Senior Forum
7:00 Wake up
7:30 – 8:30 Breakfast
8:30 – 12:30 Morning session*
- “Daily Download” review of previous day’s learning with teams
- Lively music to get students’ bodies and brains awake and attentive
- Learning skills and/or life skills instruction (through fun activities and academic rotation sessions)
- Team time
12:30 – 1:30 Lunch
1:30 – 3:30 Activity time
Activities chosen by students such as:
- outdoor sports
- campus book store visit
- main room games
- conversation, reading, quiet time
3:30 – 5:30 Afternoon session*
- Learning skills and/or life skills instruction
- Team time
5:30 – 6:30 Dinner
6:30 – 8:30 Evening session*
- More learning skills and/or life skills instruction
- Paired shares
- Team time
8:30 – 9:30 Closing session including some or all of the following:
- Journal time
- Social Time
- Nightly review
10:00 Lights out
* Music and fun learning activities permeate all sessions and breaks are regularly provided. Times and activities may vary.
LIFE AT SUPERCAMP
Dorm Life. Students share rooms in the university dormitories. Breakfast is at 7:30 AM and the day ends shortly after a closing gathering. Lights out is at 10:00 PM. The student to staff ratio is at least four to one. Team leaders and senior staff live in the same residence halls as participants to provide supervision and ensure safety. Males and females, including staff, are roomed on separate floors or wings. During the participants’ stay on campus, SuperCamp provides bedding and towels.
Safety. Since its first program in 1982, SuperCamp has provided a safe, secure environment for participants. Students remain on campus at all times. On day one, we assign them to teams of 16 to 20 campers with two team leaders. The nature of our team-building exercises guarantees that your child will immediately feel supported by the team leaders and will quickly form close bonds with other campers. We have a trained wellness person (many are registered nurses) at every program who supports the emotional and physical well-being of all kids at camp.
Dining. Students eat breakfast, lunch and dinner in the university cafeteria. For every meal, teams sit together to promote relationship building and team bonding. Over the 10-days of camp, our teams start to feel like family! The meals are provided by the university’s cafeteria. Through this collaboration with the university, we are able to accommodate for many dietary restrictions. Once enrolled, be sure to notify the SuperCamp team of these dietary restrictions. We’ll get right to work on making the accommodations.
Program FAQs – Senior Forum
Students are unique individuals with different needs and abilities who benefit from SuperCamp in a variety of areas. Although most students say SuperCamp was one of the best experiences of their life, what’s important is the long-lasting results. After attending SuperCamp, 73% of the students increase their grades (this includes straight-A students), 84% report higher self-esteem, 68% increase their motivation levels, and 98% say they continue to use skills they learned at SuperCamp long after attending. Even parents who attended SuperCamp themselves tell us SuperCamp changed their lives for the better and they continue to use the skills decades later.
At SuperCamp, we use Quantum Learning methods to create a safe, supportive, fun, and inspiring environment aligned with what we know from brain research. We build curiosity and a sense of belonging, we get inside our students’ world and build rapport, and we use strategies that reach all students and enhance their learning.
In a joyful interactive learning atmosphere, we teach students HOW to learn—skills and strategies that can be applied to any subject—building confidence and motivation. We help students understand the science behind how the brain processes information and identify how they learn best. We also guide students in building a positive sense of self and teach them the value of strong relationships. As we artfully orchestrate all of these elements, students experience mini-success moments that build confidence, create a shift in their attitude, and inspire and empower them to excel.
SuperCamp is accredited by both AdvancED and WASC (Western Association for Schools and Colleges). These are the same agencies that give accreditation to our schools and colleges. Although there are exceptions, most high schools approve elective credit for students who participate in SuperCamp. After completion of SuperCamp we provide parents and students with documentation they can use to request elective credit from their school.
Students benefit in different ways at each age. Because of our focus on character development, all age groups learn more about themselves every year they attend SuperCamp. In addition, middle school students discover their preferred learning styles and develop skills for dealing with heavier academic schedules and increased social pressures. High school students learn strategies to enhance study skills, embrace leadership, and increase test scores. College-bound students learn how to responsibly manage their time and increased independence along with the academic and personal skills needed to thrive in a university setting. Each program builds on the program before, enabling students to continuously develop their personal and academic SuperCamp skills.
A broad range of students attend SuperCamp from straight-A students to those who are struggling academically, with the majority somewhere in between. Students with strong leadership and life skills attend, as well as those who are building their abilities in these areas.
SuperCamp is not a therapeutic program and is not appropriate for students who need this kind of support. Due to our unique approach to teaching, which involves a lot of music, high energy, and communication activities focused on team and personal interactions, we have found that children experiencing heightened sensitivity and difficulty with social interactions are not as successful in this environment. When there are questions about whether or not the program is appropriate for a particular student, we consult a third-party advisor to make recommendations based on the information provided by the parent. For more specific information please contact our consultants at 800-228-5327, ext. 2, or email us at [email protected]
SuperCamp has a 35-year track record of creating a safe, secure environment for participants. It is our #1 priority. Students remain on campus at all times, with the exception at some campuses that have a supervised off-site Outdoor Challenge Course. On the first day of SuperCamp, we assign them to teams of 16 to 20 students with two to three team leaders. The nature of our team-building exercises guarantees that your child will immediately feel supported by the team leaders and will quickly form close bonds with other campers. This cohesive unit allows your child to feel safe and supported by team members and staff as they participate in all program activities. In addition, we have a trained wellness person (many are registered nurses) and a site counselor at every program who support the emotional and physical wellbeing of all students.
The overall student-to-staff ratio is four-to-one. As mentioned, students are assigned to teams, headed by two to three team leaders. Among other responsibilities, team leaders supervise and support the students on their teams and live in the same residence halls. Male and female students and staff are housed on separate floors or wings.
Every afternoon, SuperCamp students have approximately two hours for supervised “free time” during which they can choose to participate in a variety of activities or sports, visit the campus bookstore, or simply enjoy some down time.
In addition, one of our core beliefs is that all students can excel when learning is fun. To achieve success for all our participants we focus on providing a joyful and engaging learning environment at SuperCamp. Participants often tell us that they never had so much fun while learning!