Fay Academic Camp - China

Fay Academic Camp in China - Program Overview

Fay Academic Camp (FAC) is open to students who live in China ages 11 - 14 regardless of their level of English proficiency. It’s the perfect summer program for Chinese students who are interested in developing their English skills in a traditional American preparatory school setting.

FAC is a two-week overnight program taught by full-time members of the faculty of Fay School in Southborough, Massachusetts, USA. In 2018 FAC was located on the campus of Keystone Academy in Beijing and United World College in Changshu, outside of Shanghai. Students live in dormitories supervised by Fay faculty and employees, and in the afternoons and evenings students put their English language skills to work while participating in activities similar to those found at American preparatory schools.

Boarding Life    Fay Academic Camp participants stay in shared rooms in a home-style dormitory setting with a common room and shared bathrooms. Teachers and counselors live in the dorms with the students, providing 24-hour supervision and care. All students enrolled in our overnight programs have access to state-of-the-art facilities, including outdoor space and a dining facility.  

Weekend Activities    Language immersion also takes place on the weekend with fun and educational activities. On Saturday and Sunday, students will head off campus for day trips that showcase the educational and cultural resources of the area.

Our Team    As the oldest junior boarding school in the United States and home to middle school students during the school year, we are experts in making the boarding experience a positive one for adolescents. Our team is composed of Fay School’s faculty and staff, professionals in their fields, and college students who have experience working with children. All are trained in their areas of expertise and well versed in helping young people make the transition to boarding life.

Please note that this program is only open to students who are current residents of China for whom English is a second language.

Academic Program

At the beginning of the session, teachers assess each student’s skill level and place him or her into an age and language appropriate course level. Each day, students participate in courses designed to improve their English writing, reading, and communication skills, with a focus on critical thinking and analytical reasoning. Past courses include Persuasive Writing, Exploring Identity, and Comics & Graphic Novels. In addition to daily coursework, students are expected to complete homework each night. This course of study and extracurricular activities models full immersion, both in terms of language experience and in American junior boarding school cultural expectations.

Throughout FAC,
teachers continually assess student progress and send home regular program updates. Teachers also provide an end-of-summer written report on student progress.

Daily Schedule

Week One

Sunday evening
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm - Meet faculty; English writing & speaking evaluation

Monday - Friday
9:00 am - 4:00 pm - Academic immersion
4:00 pm - 7:00 pm - Activity and dinner
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm - Study hall

8:00 am - 9:00 pm - All-day cultural excursion

8:00 am - 6:00 pm - All-day cultural excursion

Week Two

Monday - Thursday
9:00 am - 4:00 pm - Academic immersion
4:00 pm - 7:00 pm - Activity and dinner
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm - Study hall

9:00 am - 12:00 pm - Academic immersion
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm - Lunch
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm - Performance of Understanding
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm - Students picked up
2019 Dates
Two 2-week sessions

Sample Course Descriptions

List of 3 items.

  • Course 1: Literature and Composition

    Students will explore American themes of race, class, and culture through class discussion, critical reading, and argumentative writing. At the beginning of the course, students write short narrative or descriptive essays and focus on using stronger verbs, writing in an authentic voice, and establishing mood. Students read and discuss short stories and poetry by authors such as Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez, and John Steinbeck. The first few assignments emphasize formulating analysis, with a particular focus on selecting key passages, generating questions with more than one answer, and identifying symbols with multiple meanings. Students may be asked to revise and expand their essays and compose extended arguments.  
  • Course 2: Critical Reasoning and Current Social Issues

    The goal of this workshop is to expand students' ability to think critically, reason analytically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems through the examination of authentic problems and issues. Understanding that problems are not presented to us in "silos" (math, science, history, language arts, etc.), we will take an integrated approach to the coursework. Current issues may include the Zika virus, race relations in the United States, and gun control; students will explore these topics through many lenses, including historical, scientific, and ethical ones. Students will ultimately analyze a topic of their own choosing, take and defend a position, and present their cases both orally and visually to a larger audience.
  • Course 3: Short Story Analysis - Themes of Identity & Belonging

    In this course, students use a collection of short stories as source material as they explore the literary themes of identity, place, and belonging. Throughout the workshop, students read the stories, analyze each author's writing style, write their own vignettes, compare and contrast themes in short stories with their own lives, and design a final creative portfolio of their work. The goals of this course are for students to develop a deeper understanding of non-literal language in text, to practice critiquing the writing of others, and to use their creativity to communicate their own identities.
"What impressed me most was the teachers’ humor, caring, intelligence and rich teaching experience, that is why I loved this camp so much. All the campers were so talented that we learned many good habits from each other and shared thoughts just by studying and doing sports together."   ~ Fay Academic Camp student 2018


Day and Overnight Programs for ages 3-15
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