# Summer 2024: Weeks 1 & 2 Class Highlights

## Summer 2024: Weeks 1 & 2 Class Highlights

Welcome to our Summer 2024: Weeks 1 & 2 Highlights!

Throughout the summer, we want to keep parents and students up-to-date on what’s happening in our summer courses. Read on to learn a few MEK fast facts, highlights, and the topics covered in your child’s MEK Summer courses the first two weeks of class!

**Fast Facts**

- Over
**7:**the # of points many students will improve on the ACT - Over
**35**: the # of MLC classes open this Summer - Over
**545:**the # of students participating in MEK courses this summer

**Week 1 & 2 Highlights**

#1. Most test prep students completed anywhere from 2-6 tests.

#2. Students settled down into in-person classes, virtual classes, and homework procedures

#3. Teachers started tracking students’ progress and discussing milestones, overall goals, and study techniques with students.

**Test Prep: Milestones & Achievements**

**SAT 1500 Advanced: **

By the end of week two, the students will have taken 4 practice tests and completed several homework assignments and in-class assignments; A big focus of 1500 Advanced is “practicing perfection.” We are well on our way with two students getting 100% on their most recent homework assignment.

**SAT 1500: **

Students have taken 5 practice tests and completed several homework assignments and in-class assignments; For English, during the first two weeks we specifically focus on mastering Craft and Structure Questions, which make up about 25% of the test. For Math, students learned the layout, scope, and testing strategies of the Math portion. Common question types and strategies were discussed through the test review, with a special emphasis on flexible approaches to higher difficulty problems. As the students grow more comfortable with the tests, we are beginning to challenge them more with DQ (difficult question) packets.

**SAT 1400:**

As in 1500, students have taken 5 practice tests and completed several homework assignments and in-class assignments. The simulation tests naturally include all question types, and students have been taught what test-taking strategies are necessary for each question type. For English, during the first two weeks we specifically focus on mastering Reading Questions, including Craft and Structure Questions and Information and Ideas Questions, which make up about 50% of the test. They have completed two skill sets each dealing with words in context, text structure and purpose questions.

For Math, there has been a sharp jump from the first test to the second and third ones. Students in this class focus on building their test taking skills and an intuitive sense for how to solve SAT level questions in the most efficient way possible. We are focusing on identifying patterns with questions and both the canonical and efficient ways to solve them (desmos). Students are still getting used to the DQ packets but we are focusing more on test review and test taking strategies. They are starting to get the hang of the flow of class and are consistently completing their work on time.

**SAT Foundation: **

The first week of Foundation Math, we discussed topics in linear functions and linear systems. Students should feel comfortable finding the x/y coordinates and various combinations of the variables when a linear function is in question. During the second week, we covered ratios, proportions and percentages, further widening our arsenal of useful math skills and tools to tackle seemingly overwhelming word problems.

Students in SAT Foundation English started learning the basic skills and test-taking strategies categorized by 4 domains of SAT English format. Starting with the Word in Context subcategory, related content from the course notebook has been given. Each subcategory of the first domain (Craft & Structure) has been analyzed in detail along with corresponding Skill Sets, namely homework assignments.The first week covered Text Structure and Purpose as well. Within each subcategory, different text types and necessary steps to be taken to approach those questions have also been covered. Assignments are accompanied by vocab quizzes that are designed based on the recommended vocabulary list. Our second week continued with Cross-Text connection questions and List 2 of vocab will be tested this week.

**Core English: **

Core English is designed to answer the needs of students preparing for PSAT, SAT, ACT and AP tests. The course includes 2 main skills, reading and writing but in the first 2 weeks we have also covered prose analysis essays and vocabulary acquisition methods. For reading, we’ve covered effective annotation skills and strategies for tackling narrative and science passages. For writing, we learn about subject/verb agreement and verb tense, and work on writing literary analysis essays on prose texts and poetry. The students have already submitted their first essay and the assessment cycle has been completed. The skills mentioned are tested through Reading skill sets and Writing skill sets accompanied by regular vocab quizzes.

**Exam Prep 8, Math: **

So far, we’ve covered efficient calculation, Number Theory and Applications of Ratios & Proportional Relationships. Students have an assessment each class and will have completed 5 math quizzes and 1 cumulative exam.

**Exam Prep 8, English: **

In the first 2 weeks, students have discussed how to identify and approach different types of analogies (namely synonym, antonym, degrees/extremes, and Actor/Action/Object) and learned how to tackle different types of questions typically associated with critical reading (Inference/Basic Fact and Detail questions and Main Idea questions). They’ve also discussed different ways to study vocabulary, including understanding and identifying root words, prefixes, and suffixes.

**SSAT/ISEE 8, Math: **

Our math students have had an opportunity to take both the ISEE and the SSAT by this point. We also covered the similarities and differences between the two tests and discussed a few different test taking strategies as well.

**SSAT/ISEE 8, English: **

We are teaching an overall mix of skills necessary for SSAT and ISEE tests. This includes strategies for tackling “big picture” reading comprehension questions, such as Main Idea and Detail Question drills. The main focus on skill acquisition is on analogy questions from the SSAT, as well as evidence-based reading skills including inference and EXCEPT questions. Students have learned how and where to focus their attention while dealing with a long text to read. Moreover, they use their annotation skills for improved time-management. Another important piece of content has been the types of analogies that appear on the SSAT. Over the course of these first two weeks, students have taken two practice simulation tests, one vocabulary quiz, and completed twelve homework skill sets.

**High School Honors | Topics Covered**

**Honors Algebra II:**

- We started the Algebra 2 curriculum covering sequences and series with some more complex applications using Binomial Theorem and Pascal’s Triangle. We will have taken our first quiz by the end of the week as well!

**Honors Analysis I:**

- So far, students have learned the definition and properties of functions. Furthermore, they have been visualizing and sketching graphs of various functions. To do this, they must first understand transformations and identify parts of equations. We are focusing on understanding behaviors of different functions by looking at the equations, which is a key skill in Analysis courses.

**Honors Chemistry:**

- We’ve covered the basics about the atom, subatomic particles, quantum numbers, and electron configuration. Chemistry topics build on each other so keeping that focus throughout class has been key.

**Chemistry Special: **

- We started with the basics about the atom, subatomic particles, quantum numbers, and electron configuration. Chemistry topics build on each other, therefore keeping that focus throughout class has been key. Virtual class is 90 min instead of the standard 2 hr, making the pace a little faster. Nevertheless, the students have done well to meet that expectation.

**Honors Geometry:**

- Thus far, students have learned about the basic building blocks of Geometry. For example, we’re naming lines and angles, various angle and segment relationships, and we’ve worked through various proofs. Each student will become familiar with definitions of points, lines, and planes, which will build upon each other every week. Students have homework every class, and are administered quizzes and tests.

**Honors Pre-Calculus:**

- Pre-Calc students swept through some quick Algebra II Review, followed by transformations/domains of functions. Afterward, we introduced Right Triangle Trigonometry and the Unit Circle. We just finished graphing sin and cos curves and being able to rewrite a sin graph as a cos graph.

**Honors Physics:**

- We have covered crucial concepts and fundamental problem solving techniques required to tackle kinematics, or the study of motion. Students should be able to identify various kinematics quantities such as: displacement, velocity, time and acceleration. They will also be able to draw from equations discussed in class to compute any missing information.

**MEK Learning Circles & Labs: Milestones & Achievements**

**Writing Circles**

**MLC Writing 4: **Students were introduced to paragraph writing and detail development. They were also exposed to sentence structure, specifically avoiding run-ons and fragments.

**MLC Writing 6: **During these first 2 weeks, students have practiced grammar skills such as parts of speech and verb tenses. Additionally, they have written 3 different kinds of essays: expository, descriptive, and persuasive. Finally, students have discussed the different writing processes such as brainstorming, revising, and writing strong hooks for their essays.

**MLC Writing 7: **In this course, students learn to write and revise essays in four different styles (expository, persuasive, narrative, and descriptive). So far, we have done two essays of the expository type. Presently, we are starting our persuasive unit. During our sessions, we also cover grammatical topics and concepts. So far, we have been focusing on sentence structure and combining sentences through conjunctions.

**MLC Writing 5, 7, 8: **By the end of the first two weeks, students have written 4 essays. They have learned about expository, descriptive, and persuasive writing. Classes have completed 4 grammar exercises. These exercises range from parts of speech to sentence structure such as run-on sentences versus fragments. Students have learned the basic structure of an essay, with an intense focus on introduction paragraphs.

**MLC Enriched 8 Writing: **Students in Enriched 8 Writing have been learning to write and revise essays in four different styles (expository, persuasive research, narrative, and descriptive). So far, we have completed two expository assignments, and this week we will be starting our persuasive research unit. During our sessions, students also learn grammatical concepts. We have covered the parts of speech and subject-verb agreement.

**Critical Reading Circles**

**Critical Reading 5: **In this class, students have learned how to annotate fiction and non-fiction texts. We’ve gone over the structure of a 5 paragraph essay and worked on creating better hooks and thesis statements for our introductory paragraphs.

**Critical Reading 6: **By the end of two weeks, students will have read 2 informational texts and 2 fiction texts. They have completed 4 literary analysis essays. During the first week, they learned how to annotate both types of texts, and they learned literary analysis essay structure. We have also gone over introductions in depth.

**Critical Reading 7: **This class provides an amazing backdrop to insightful examination/discussion/and synthesis of demanding fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and political cartoons. Students examine these texts to decipher meaning, address critical literary elements, and respond with stellar literary response essays.

**Critical Reading 8: **Students started by learning basic annotation skills. They have written three essays and are reinforcing how to write effective literary analysis essays with a focus on introductory thesis statements.

**Verbal Reasoning Circles**

**MLC Advanced 7, Verbal Reasoning: **

Students taking the VR 7 course have learned how to annotate texts and how to answer basic fact questions. On the verbal side, students are learning root word prefix and suffix relationships as well as understanding word relationships through analogies and sentence completions.

**Non-fiction Reading: **

In NFR 6 & 7, students were introduced to the presentation format and constructed presentations independently. They have also analyzed several non-fiction articles about their first topic (immigration). They read and break down the facts, followed by brainstorming and developing their presentations for their second topic, the Mental Health Crisis.

**MATH**

**Math 5 ONS: **

In these first two weeks, students have learned core concepts covered in 5th Grade math classes like multiplication, division and factoring.

**Math 5 PSM: **

In MLC Math 5 PSM, students review their foundational skills and apply them in word problems. We teach them how to identify key words, extract the right information, set up their answers, and interpret the results. They will cover topics such as common denominators, multi-digit number divisions, decimal operations (addition, subtraction, division, multiplication), fractions, unit conversions, and much more. Additionally, they are learning how to manage their time during exercises. Understanding that if they know how to solve the problems, the only barrier is simple operations. A barrier which can be overcome with practice. Students have homework every session, followed by classwork, assessments, and tests.

**Math 6 PSM: **

Students in the MLC Math 6 PSM class have started to learn how to apply fraction and decimal operations to different word problem scenarios. They have been taught how to decode statements and identify key words that point us towards the correct math operation. Throughout our first week together, students completed over 100 different problems. Next week we’ll be learning about ratios and proportions and solving close to 225 problems.

**MAPC, Junior: **

Week 1 honed in on applications of ratios/percentage problems, with a focus on finding direct shortcuts for problems that would take far too long otherwise.

**MAPC Rookie:**

Students got an intro to their first few competition math exercises. Quick hits include prime factorization, slot method, and probability! Students have to think creatively and outside of the box to find solutions to these difficult questions.

**MLC Math, Pre-Algebra I ONS: **

In this class, students will study topics crucial to their understanding of Algebra. They will start in familiar territory, studying ratios and proportions, but will progress to solving missing variables, introduction to statistics and geometry. By the end of the class students should have a good understanding of the basic operations involved in higher level math.

**MLC Math, Pre-Algebra I PSM: **

In the first two weeks, we covered topics that are very important in the Pre-Algebra curriculum. We focused mainly on ratios and proportions, as well as word problems related to those topics

**MLC Math, Pre-Algebra II ONS: **

This is the second part of a student’s pre-algebra journey. Students will use the skills and abilities they learned in pre-algebra 1 and put them to use creating new concepts. Students in this class have learned about rational & irrational numbers. Additionally, they’ve learned how to apply integer exponent rules to variable distribution and polynomial expressions. In our first week, we completed about 100 different problems. After learning about how to apply those same exponent properties to numbers written in scientific notation, we will reach 200 problems solved.

**MLC Math, Pre-Algebra II PSM: **

Students in MLC Pre-Algebra II learned how to efficiently identify key words, how to initially set up their answers, and how to interpret their answers. They have learned how to use their foundation in more advanced word problems that involve rational and irrational numbers, laws of exponents, linear equations, functions, operations in scientific notation, and systems of equations by the end of week two, making them ready for their first unit test. Students in this class have completed 200 homework problems already, along with 3 in-class assessments, and 4 cumulative tests. They are learning how to manage their time during classwork and assessments.

**MLC Math, Algebra I: **

Students in the MLC Algebra I class reviewed domain and range properties in preparation for how it applies to linear equations. Solving over 100 problems across operative and word problem types. After learning about graphing linear functions and systems of linear equations, we will be hitting 225 problems solved.

**MEK Learning Circles & Labs: Milestones & Achievements**

**Critical Reading Circles: **In MLC Critical Reading (8) students learned how to be an active reader and engage with the text in meaningful ways. They learned the structure of a 5 paragraph Literary Analysis Essay and have written two essays on a non-fiction text.

**Writing Circles: **In MLC Writing (6&8) students have written one expository essay and one descriptive essay (2 essays total). Students learned the general structure of a 5 paragraph essay and some revision techniques to help them improve their writing skills. Students also completed one grammar lesson.

**Operations & Number-Sense Circles:** Students have completed 1 cumulative assessment covering 4+ CCSS domains and 10+ standards. ONS classes answered 125+ different math problems.

**Problem-Solving Math Circles: **Students have completed 1 cumulative assessment covering 4+ CCSS domains and 10+ standards. PSM classes answered 150+ different word problems.

**Non-fiction Reading: **Using our first topic, Immigration, students were introduced to non-fiction analysis skills and the presentation format. The information and handouts they received in our first class will help them construct their presentations independently, after which they’ll practice at home for their barrister debut. Coming up next week is the Teenage Mental Health Crisis, a topic that should spark much brainstorming and lively discussion.

### What’s Next?

We’re excited for what’s to come as Summer 2024 continues and look forward to sharing with you the highlights of Weeks 3 & 4 on Friday, August 2nd!

Sign up for our BCA/BT and/or our 40-Month Project Seminars today!

#### Meet our Students of the Week…

Week 1, Gevan Ha

Week 2, Ganeev Sachar