Forman Spotlight

Summer Camps for Students with Learning Differences: Forman Summer Program Offers Individualized Approach to Learning

June 6, 2023

A dynamic balance of academics and recreation, Forman School’s four-week boarding and day summer camp is designed as a boost: inspiring, challenging, and empowering bright students who learn differently.

Each July, The Forman Summer Program takes place on the school’s 125-acre campus in Litchfield, CT. The coed program is open to students with learning differences entering grades 7-11. Students with ADHD or language-based learning differences, such as dyslexia, and dysgraphia, dyscalculia, learn independence, self-advocacy, and academic strategies to apply in the upcoming school year and beyond.

In the Classroom

Students take three classes in the mornings, where they discover their learning styles and practice executive function skills in a small classroom environment. The small class sizes, which average six students, allow teachers to tailor their instruction to meet the needs of the students. Teachers create engaging lessons that build confidence and skills in reading, writing, math, and executive functioning. They also intentionally build positive classroom environments, so students feel comfortable taking risks and challenging themselves.

Students can create an individualized schedule that best suits their academic needs and build confidence and skills in various academic areas. For instance, our math classes allow students to build a solid foundation in the content they will take in the fall or get extra practice with the subject they took in the spring. In addition, students who lack confidence in math learn how well they can do and, ultimately, view math as fun and engaging.

Reading classes offer students several ways to continue to practice their skills over the summer. Students who need remedial reading can continue to build that skill set in our program. Other reading classes allow students who have previously struggled to enjoy reading the opportunity to engage in novels, short stories, and other texts and build skills in reading comprehension strategies. 

Many families are drawn to the program’s executive functioning classes as this is not typically offered in their child’s regular school. These classes give explicit instruction in a variety of executive functioning skills that help give students a solid foundation in skills such as task management, task initiation, study skills, and planning and managing long-term projects.

Writing provides students the opportunity to build foundational skills or challenge themselves to learn more about the process of research writing. Like math, many students have previously struggled to feel confident in this subject. Our teachers do a wonderful job helping students learn new skills, find their voice as writers, and view writing as something that can be fun and meaningful.


Students who enroll in the Summer Program and the upcoming academic year at Forman have four weeks over the summer to acclimate to the campus and the community. Students are able to build positive relationships with teachers, so when they arrive in the fall, they have familiar faces to look for on campus. By the end of the program, they know the campus like the back of their hand, which helps them seamlessly transition at the start of the school year. 

Furthermore, dual-enrolled students form close bonds with each other that often carry over naturally into the regular school year.

Learning from Alumni

Forman alumni serve as Summer Program Counselors and provide an invaluable perspective of what it means to be successful in the face of adversity and challenge. Students get to experience four weeks with alumni who are successful, confident role models. The counselors serve as mentors to the students as they have experienced similar challenges in life and in school. It helps students build confidence and feel like they can accomplish their dreams.

Time for Play

Each afternoon, students participate in two to four activities, such as fishing, rock climbing, ceramics, horseback riding, and digital photography. Weekends include on- and off-campus activities for students to enjoy the natural beauty of summer in northwest Connecticut and explore the local area. The program’s balance of academics and extracurricular activities provides students with a well-rounded experience. Our program promotes confidence, new friendships, and fun in the process.

To learn more about the Forman Summer Program, click here.

Blog contributors: Brittany Bloom, Dean of Academics for the Forman Summer Program, and John Strawson, Director of the Forman Summer Program. 

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