I really envy these kids—Greylock is an absolutely beautiful camp in the woods of Lenox, Massachusetts.
Bordered by the lake, the water at Greylock is calm and clear. Some of the kids have fishing poles, others are off playing one sport or another, and some are swimming in the shallow part of the water nearest the shore. Since I live in Manhattan, the silence of the country is unusual for me—I hear nothing but the wind, the birds, and some kids laughing or cheering at a game of ring toss played in the distance.
Last summer in the Iroquois cabin, two other tutors and I had the gift of working with Greylock campers. Subjects ranged from SAT prep to reading to math to history. The camp directors were kind enough to set up a table for us out on the porch of our cabin so we could tutor outside, in full view of the water.
Although I was worried that our students wouldn’t want tutoring with so much else out there to do, every student came in happy to be tutored and eager to learn. Each week I’d get stories about basketball games won, hockey games played, golf tournaments entered and the like from my students. They were positively glowing about their experiences and welcomed the change of pace camp tutoring offered them during a full day.
Maybe it was that they had all week to play, or maybe it was how calm the camp was, or maybe it was Greylock itself—but all our time was well spent and the students learned a great deal. Most of the time the kids came in fresh from one activity or another and they ended up hyper-focusing on academics; because of this heightened focus, all of the sessions I taught were especially effective. It was like the experience of camp revitalized them and made the students more ready for tutoring. In Manhattan sometimes there are good sessions and not so good ones– all of my sessions at Greylock were excellent.
I couldn’t get over how much fun these kids were having doing woodworking or sailing or playing ring toss outside our cabin or just taking naps on picnic benches in the afternoon and coming in to learn when it was their time to see us. Everyone was eager to learn and gave their best. I was amazed at how much my students improved in such a short time, and how much they gave me their undivided attention. I knew they were going to have a great year when they started school back up again—they were well-rested and academically prepared to tackle whatever came their way. Summer tutoring matters more than parents think, and I am looking forward to another great summer of tutoring at Camp Greylock!
By Grant Bergland, Private Tutor