Overview: All grade 9 students and all new grade 10 students are enrolled in Study Hall/Study Skills for the first marking period (roughly 5 weeks). Study Hall/ Study Skills provides some structure to the academic day, reinforcing skills needed for students to organize papers and schoolwork, update a daily/weekly planner for work, start homework or study for assessments. Proctors are present to help students remain organized and to answer any questions they may have.
Overview: The program is designed to help freshmen understand themselves as individuals, understand their role in a global community, and make informed choices related to their health, interaction with others, and daily responsibilities. Students meet four times over the course of the fall trimester. These meetings are scheduled during their regular Study Hall/Study Skills classes. This is followed by a class taken in either the winter or spring trimester. In addition, there is one freshman class field trip.
Overview: This required series of courses has been developed by the College Counselor to aid our students in researching and selecting the colleges or universities that will best meet their needs and to assist them in the process of application.
Sophomore Seminar This course has been designed to help our students find educational opportunities – primarily programs of study in postsecondary institutions – that are consistent with the their occupational interests. All sophomores are administered the Self-Directed Search Assessment in the spring trimester.
Junior Seminar This course is designed to aid our juniors systematically and comprehensively in the college search process. This mandatory pass-fail course meets once a week during the winter trimester.
Senior Seminar This course is designed to assist our seniors with their college essays and their college applications. This mandatory pass-fail course meets once a week during the fall trimester.
The WMA Writing Center is a place where students receive help with any type of writing. After training, the tutors work with all Academy students to improve English and history essays, presentations, lab reports, college essays – anything involving writing. Students may ask for help at all stages of the writing process from brainstorming and organizing through polishing and publishing. Tutors are available for half-hour sessions and informal advising.
Students who have experienced academic difficulty in a subject area are assigned to the Directed Study program. These students are required to receive additional help from a teacher in the area where they are experiencing difficulty. The student and teacher engage in a written contract that specifically identifies the reasons the teacher assigned directed study and states the weekly expectations that students must accomplish in order to fulfill the contract. Although these contracts are not designed to be punitive, students who do not fulfill their contract on a weekly basis may receive a weekend detention for doing so.
The WMA Academic Services department has been in existence for close to 30 years. The Academic Services teachers are well-trained, experienced, learning specialists with lengthy tenure at WMA who know the needs of their students and the needs of the school well. Each is a highly committed and motivated professional, determined to help students maximize their academic strengths. An integral part of that mission is instilling a sense of self-confidence and self-efficacy, as well as self-advocacy skills in each student as they adjust to the demands of a competitive independent school and prepare them for the challenges of college.