Hambright creates ‘PSSA Camp’ to help bolster academic skills

Hambright students brushed up on their academic skills this week from camp chairs, tents and sleeping bags as their school was transformed into “PSSA Camp.”

Set up by teachers in the fifth-grade academic commons, the camp included 12 stations, each with a camping theme, where students completed hands-on reading and writing exercises to prepare for PSSA language arts testing next week.

“We have a group of high-energy students this year and many of them learn best by doing,” said Melissa Borgoyn, one of the fifth-grade teachers who set up the camp. “We all love the outdoors and had many of the props to bring this theme to life.”

The idea for the camp came from Beth Martin. Other teachers involved in the project include Katie Lutz and Jason Ayer.

Among the stations were:

  • Fishing for Inferences”: Students used fishing poles to catch fish with inference paragraphs.
  • “Camp Main”: Students identified main ideas, with supporting details written and stacked on logs.
  • “Tasty Testing Tips”: Students read and sorted PSSA tips on hot dogs and buns.
  • “Fact and Opinion Clothesline”: Students located facts and opinions, wrote them on clothes and hung them on a line.
  • “Mosquito Swat”: Students used fly swatters to swat vocabulary terms and definitions.

Teachers joined in the fun by dressing like camp counselors or park rangers.

The students “were absolutely engaged and enthusiastic,” said Lutz. “Our hope is that they not only had a unique and memorable educational experience, but were able to work collaboratively on recalling and practicing PSSA-eligible content.”

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