Summer Science, Reading, Writing, and Debate Camp for Rising 5th – 7th Graders

Summer Science/Writing/History/Debate Camp (8:30 – 5 pm)

Week 1 Jun 26- Jun 30

Week 2 Jul 5 – Jul 7

Week 3 Jul 10 – Jul 14

Week 4 Jul 17 – Jul 21 

Every day, our teachers will conduct science experiments with students, using the simplest materials, such as using pickle as battery, dish wash liquid to make clouds, DNA extraction, using celery for plant biology, and many other interesting science experiments. Every day, our teachers work on critical reading, creative writing, essay crafting, and public speaking. We aim to train our students to become avid readers, advanced writers, curious scientists, and confident public speakers.

Week One

  • Experimental design
  • Cell biology: making “plastic” milk to learn about protein
  • Genetics
  • DNA extraction experiment: how to extract DNA from any living
  • Microbiology- create your own bacterium out of recyclable items

Week Two:

  • Anatomy
  • Plant biology- learning how transpiration works with celery
  • Evolutionary/population biology
  • Ecology

Week Three: 

  • Earth science – building a volcano
  • Gravitational Force I: experiments on coke, diet coke; study mass, volume, density
  • Gravitational Force II: Electrical force, Magnetic force
  • Introduction to Chemistry: electrolysis of water experiment
  • Chemistry experiment using pickle as a battery

Week Four: 

  • Learn graphing a data interpretation in science experiment
  • Expose modern techniques of science to increase students’ academic achievement
  • Genetics unit, including classical and Mendelian genetics, molecular genetics, protein synthesis, and an introduction to molecular research techniques, including DNA sequencing, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), and cloning


英文写作老师 Ms. Ivy 获得J.D. degree,在GMU英文系任教,为英文系的主力. 她教授大学二年级学生的英文写作. 曾在DC私立学校(Cornerstone Schools of DC)教英文写作。IVY已发表二十余篇诗歌文和章,侧重于创意和诗歌写作(creative writing and poetry), 钟爱教学和写作. Ms. IVY 曾任美国大学诗歌协会的副编辑,荣获2008 Academy of American Poets 诗歌作品大奖. 此届比赛由著名诗人Srikanth Reddy为裁判 (其毕业于哈佛大学英文系).

Teachers’s Bio (English Version):

Teacher Ms. Ivy graduated with greatest honor of summa cum laude from the English and Political Science Department. She also received Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Creative Writing. Ms. Ivy further receives a J.D. degree from the law school. Ms. Ivy taught “Creative Writing” and “English Composition” courses at English Department, George Mason University.

Ms. Ivy brings her impressive writing talents and publication accomplishments to Oakton Academy. Ms. Ivy published many poems and articles, and won Academy of American University & College Poetry Prize in 2008, awarded and judged by the poet Scrikanth Reedy, who was a graduate from Harvard English Literature department.

Ms. Ivy worked as an Associate Editor of the Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Law Review. She was also an honored “Truman Capote Fellowship” recipient. Last summer Ms. Ivy led the two groups’ reading and writing classes (5-7th grader, and 7-8th grade). Some of her students passed the TJ admission test and other private high school test. Ms. Ivy is currently leading an “Intensive Writing” class for 7th and 8th graders, and all her students enjoy her writing approach, and like her as a teacher as well. She has received overwhelming praise from both parents and students. It is our privilege to have Ms. Ivy lead and teach our students this summer.

Teacher Ms. Lindsay currently teaches Biology and Chemistry at FCPS.  She is certified in Biology, Chemistry, and Mathematics.  Ms. Lindsay has taught Biology, Genetics, and Microbiology to college students at Illinois Wesleyan University, where she graduated with cum laude.  

Ms. Lindsay holds a Master of Science degree from College of Agricultural and Life Science, Department of Plant Pathology, University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her thesis was on “Aminoglycoside Antibiotics Resistance in Wisconsin Apple Orchard Soil.” (2009)

Her chemistry and biology teaching includes bubble lab (looking at properties of a membrane), an enzyme lab (using yeast and hydrogen peroxide). She adds a focus on graphing a data interpretation to strengthen many students’ science skills and to perform well in the science test.

Ms. Lindsay’s teaching philosophy and goals are to provide a positive and safe learning environment for all enrolled in the class; to utilize her broad biology training in the natural science teaching; to expose modern techniques of science to increase students’ academic achievement.

She has worked with students on genetics unit, including classical and Mendelian genetics, molecular genetics, protein synthesis, and an introduction to molecular research techniques, including DNA sequencing, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), and cloning. We are very excited to have Ms. Lindsay lead the summer science, reading, writing, and debate program for 5/6/7th graders.  

Teacher Ms. Sanda received M.S. in Educational Instruction and Curriculum. She focuses on curriculum design, writing and teaching for K – 8th graders. Ms. Sanda has taught Creative and Persuasive Writing Classes in Arlington county and Fairfax county public school. For the past years, she has taught classics reading and journal writing classes at Oakton Academy. She received overwhelming praise from parents and students. Her creative and innovative teaching style, her dedication and commitment to students, her passion for teaching, as well as her combination background of education, science, and writing adds to this vibrant and unique learning environment.

Ms. Sanda S.毕业于UVA, 从小喜欢科学实验和写作. 她本科为生物科学研究. 她获得GMU教育研究生院教育学硕士, 在大学时,她曾获优秀学生奖. Ms. Sanda 注重课程设计, 热爱在课堂第一线教学, 喜欢学生。Ms. Sanda 在Oakton已教第十期5-8 年级的阅读写作课. Ms. Sanda 教学过程中应用最新教学意向,有创意地激发学生兴趣爱好.  鼓励学生读和写的热情, 培养学生良好的写作习惯:记日记,采访家人,朋友和同学等;针对学生亲自做的科学实验要求学生用脑,用笔,用手进行记录,写报告,等等活动. 2015, 2016年夏季, Ms. Sanda 带动学生亲自动手做科学实验,完成了许多小实验,最后一天孩子们在众多家长面前表演, 呈现他们的实验成果。获得家长们的喜欢和极力称赞,说是:”The best camp we have ever had.” 

For details, please review link: Public Speaking/Debating

Summer Science/Writing Camp Daily Planning: 

We are excited to have your child (rising 5th – 6th grader) join us for the Summer Science/Reading/Writing/Debate Camp 

Science/Writing Camp


8:30 am – door opens

9:00 am – class starts

9:00 – 10:30 am – Science Experiments (daily)

10:30 am – 12 noon – Classics Reading/Writing/Discussing (daily)

12 noon – 1:00 pm – Lunch

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm – Social Science/History

2: 00 pm – 3:00 pm – Creative Writing (daily)

3:00 pm – 4:30 pm – Debate/Paper crafts/Arts

4: 30 pm – 5: 00 pm – Pick up time

Program Overview: Science (Camp Info)

  • Genetics- DNA extraction experiment
  • Microbiology- create your own bacterium out of recyclable items
  • Anatomy
  • Experimental design/cell biology: making “plastic” milk to learn about protein
  • Plant biology- learning how transpiration works with celery
  • Diet coke, regular coke, experiment
  • Sinking boat, weight, experiment
  • Evolutionary/population biology
  • Gravitation: experiment
  • Ecology
  • Earth science, introduction to chemistry (experiment with using a pickle as a battery)
  • Earth science- building a volcano

Program overview: Writing/Language arts (Camp Info)

For the language arts portion of the program students will be reading the classic books assigned to them weekly. Every day in class we will be using the assigned books to launch writing and discussions during class. It is very important for students to keep up with their daily reading assignments.

We will issue daily reading schedule and assignment. Students will receive specific chapter reading requirements every day. These books have been carefully chosen for their content and literary merit.

Books include: George Orwell’s Animal Farm; Paulo Coelho’s Alchemist; Sue Monk Kidd’s Secret Life of Bees; Jeanne Wakatsuki’s Farewell to Manzanar; Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Robert Louise Stevenson’s Treasure Island, and many other classic readings. Our reading programs also included some articles from Washington Post, Time Magazine. All of which are served the purpose to enrich students’ reading ability and writing skills, which are critical in their high school English learning and future SAT exams.

Program overview: Social Studies (history, and current affairs/issues from Time Magazine, Washington Post):  Camp Info  

Social studies week 1: a wide array of topics from the field of social studies

  • The impact of geography on different civilizations (interactive read aloud)
  • Examining President Lincoln’s motivations in issuing the Emancipation Proclamation
  • Art exploration through social studies
  • Current events issue (an article / an issue from Time Magazine)

Social studies week 2: a focus on the birth of the nation

  • The Articles of Confederation
  • The Constitutional Convention
  • The Constitution & the Bill of Rights
  • A modern day examination of the Bill of Rights & the Supreme Court

Social studies week 3: a wide array of topics from the field of social studies

  • WWII stories, use materials and books to investigate further
  • Students choose a topic in history that interests them the most and investigate and research further to develop discussion
  • Examining President Obama’s speech review and discussion
  • Review a historical article from Time Magazine
  • Current events issue (global issues, international affairs), pipeline drilling

Public Speaking/Debating Info Details:

CAMP Location: close to Vienna/Fairfax/Oakton/McLean (Route 123, I- 66, 495, convenient to all access) 

Registration:; for details, visit: Summer Science & Writing

Contacts: or (571) 354-7199. Thank you!