Minor Courses

In addition to learning English, you can choose a minor course such as computer programming, public speaking, SAT preparation, or music appreciation. 

Minor courses meet from 1:30 to 3 pm, four days per week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday). All work is conducted in class, and there is no assigned homework.

Some minor courses may fill quickly, so please list three choices on your online application.

NMH summer student working with clay
NMH summer students collaborating on a project
Student works on a painting at an easel
NMH Summer Session drama students, having a class meeting on stage

ESOL–American Culture

If you are taking English for Speakers of Other Languages–CP as your morning major course, this minor course rounds out your immersion experience with an exploration of American customs, personalities, music, film, sports, and geography. Develop your writing and speaking skills, and head off campus every week with your class to broaden your knowledge of American communities.


Work with your hands and get creative! You’ll explore a variety of clay-building techniques: pinching, slipping and scoring, coiling, slab-building, and throwing on the wheel. Through a variety of projects, you’ll learn about texture, form, and structure. Materials fee: $50.

Community Service

Get involved with the community! This course is all about building awareness of local and global needs and working with various organizations to offer support. Our discussions and action will focus on issues such as homelessness and housing, health care, education, and children. We’ll visit a homeless shelter and a nursing home, volunteer with a children’s reading program at a local library, and raise money for the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts and other similar nonprofit groups. 

Computer Programming

Build skills that will come in handy throughout the rest of high school and in college. Learn to write graphical programs that explore fundamental computer science topics. In doing so, you’ll apply logic and critical-thinking skills in ways that are applicable to a broad range of disciplines. You’ll cover conditionals, loops, arrays, and basic object orientation, as well as the creation of simple games.

Digital Photography

Capture the world around you! Brush up on camera basics; master shutter speed, apertures, depth-of-field, and flash. You’ll work to take high-quality photographs under varying conditions, and you’ll experiment with landscape photography, close-ups, portraits, and athletic events. You must have your own digital SLR camera.


Are you theatrical? Do you love to perform? In this course, you’ll explore acting, improvisation, and mime. You’ll practice monologues and prepare a production to be presented to the campus community at the end of Summer Session.

Drawing and Painting

Express your creativity and capture the world around you in bright colors — or black and white. This course will be tailored to you and your individual interests and abilities, and is an opportunity for students of all levels to develop skills in drawing and painting. Materials fee: $50.

Music Appreciation

Study the music and music history of Western and Eastern Europe, Russia, and the U.S.; classical traditions in South America; and modern concert and film music. You’ll explore the Medieval, Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras before diving into the 20th century, a time of great experimentation, when composers began to spread their own traditions throughout the world.

Public Speaking

Get rid of stage fright forever and prepare yourself for all those presentations facing you in high school and college. Learn the principles of effective public speaking and practice, practice, practice! You’ll try various forms of public address, from brief improvisational talks to formal speeches.

Renewable Energy

Our changing climate has created a great need to change our policies about how we generate electricity. Build your knowledge and awareness of renewable energy sources and how they can make our world more sustainable. In addition to classroom time, you’ll head out on field trips to local solar, wind, and hydroelectric power facilities.

SAT Preparation

Get strategic! This course, taught by Summit Educational Group instructors, focuses on the academic skills and test-taking techniques you need to succeed on the SAT. You’ll get support and guidance based on your individual needs that will maximize your scoring potential. There are several options:

  1. SAT Math and Verbal: 1:30–3 pm, four days per week (you’ll do a sport 3:30–5 pm, four days per week)
  2. SAT Math and Verbal: 3:30–5 pm, four days per week (if you choose this option, you won’t do a sport)
  3. SAT Math only: 3:30–5 pm, two days a week (you’ll do a sport the other two days)
  4. SAT Verbal only: 3:30–5 pm, two days a week (you’ll do a sport the other two days)

Summit course fees: options 1 or 2, $850; options 3 or 4, $500. (Summit will reduce these fees for students who receive NMH Summer Session financial aid.)

Summer Session Singers

Bring your love of music to like-minded peers and collaborate with your voices. You’ll learn songs and practice together, with music selections based on your collective interests. No experience is necessary, and the ability to read music is not required.

The New York Times visited NMH Summer Session


Summer Session Viewbook