The other half of our students traveled to the untouched rainforests of Sarapiqui to study the art of Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Daily classes were planned by our English teacher, Brooke, herself certified and experienced in TEFL.
Students applied their new knowledge and skills with practice teaching at a nearby elementary school, where they also participated in community service.
To celebrate, students and staff took to the whitewater of the world-famous Sarapiqui River for well-deserved fun after earning their TEFL certificates!
Professional-level certifications are a required component of the New Summit Academy program, ensuring that students experience real-world, challenging learning outside of their amazing classroom experiences.
This week, a part of our student body chose to earn their SCUBA Certifications to meet that requirement. The palm-lined beaches of Playa del Coco in northwestern Costa Rica provided the backdrop for the course. Students began the week learning the fundamentals of Open Water diving and practicing hands-on techniques in the safety of the hotel pool before putting their learning into practice in the beautiful Pacific waters.
Coral reefs teeming with schools of fish were the rewards of the students’ work and dedication, along with their Open Water certification cards!
by Dr. Danny Recio & Andy Myers (Oct 2016)
Check out this great presentation by Dr. Danny Recio and Andy Myers - given at the Young Adult Transition Association conference in October 2016 in Idaho, USA. You will learn a lot about the psychological and social benefits of an appropriate, supportive cross-cultural immersion experience on growth and complexity.
Teachers and all of our staff work very hard to help students develop real skills for success. Every once in a while, one of our graduates reaches out to say thanks and to help make our jobs even more fulfilling. The message is important for our families of current seniors, as well as an example of college application success.
From a 2016 High School Graduate:
“I just wanted to write to tell you how much I appreciate the time you devoted towards helping me and my family during my college process over a year ago. That was a stressful, exciting and crucial time in my life where you did an impeccable job of helping me stay organized, write concise essays, and choose a school where I can continue to be academically successful. Not only that, but I am truly grateful for the academic skills that I learned while in Costa Rica and the curiosity of mine which was utilized in and out of the classroom like never before while at New Summit. As time continues I only appreciate these things more and more. From the bottom of my heart, I want to write to say thank you to you and all of the other teachers who have impacted my life and academic career in such a positive manner. I am also proud to say that I finished with a 3.46 GPA freshman year. I am continuing to expand my mind and curiosity here at Fordham inside the classroom.
Anyways, I hope to visit NSA soon but for now, I say hi and send my regards to the academic staff!" - Robbie
This past week, the NSA community – faculty and staff, students and families – gathered to celebrate the high school and NSA program graduation of two beloved students. The day was bittersweet, as both students became important contributors to our campus throughout their stays, helping guide their peers, developing a healthy milieu, and achieving amazing academic and personal growth.
These young men are each setting out for very different, but equally exciting, paths after graduating with honors. One will return home to continue working on his college applications with the plan to enroll in the fall of 2018. The second embarked with NSA on an adventure to South Africa and plans on joining our Bridge program to investigate internships. We are very proud of both young men, and excited for their certain future successes.
An integral component of all facets of the New Summit Academy program is the development of student empowerment and a feeling of student ownership of their community and processes. NSA’s Student Council exemplifies one of the many opportunities that students have to advocate for themselves and develop their executive functioning skills, all while making their community a better place to live!
Students campaign for Student Council, and are voted by their peers into positions that include President, Vice President, Activities Coordinator, and Proposals Coordinator.
Once in position, the President guides his peers in choosing and scheduling weekend activities and club outings, including the very-popular Running and Climbing Clubs. Students are also involved in decisions on how to spend the quarterly student budget for community improvements, and in writing proposals for making changes or additions to the student handbook. Through these activities, students see real, positive changes in their day-to-day lives as the rewards for investment and action!
Blog authors may be students, staff, parents or colleagues. We're all-inclusive! Just enjoy!