day in the life

A Typical Weekday at BEAM 7



Today, we’re showing you what a typical day at BEAM looks like! With things happening from 8AM to 10PM, we’re pretty busy all day long. This guest post is written by Bobae, a counselor at BEAM, who just finished her first year at Harvard. 

8-9am: We begin with breakfast—what better way to get energized for the jam-packed day? The students can leave for breakfast with the counselors between 8:00 and 8:30. We head out to the cafeteria, where the kids get buffet-style options.

9-11am: The kids put their cell phones away until 7pm. (Don’t worry, if there’s an emergency, we will always make an exception!) From 9-11, the kids are in math class with a teacher and a teaching assistant. The classes are designed to let the students figure things out for themselves, and, frequently, the teaching assistants are not told the material ahead of time—so that they learn alongside the students! We like a collaborative and interactive learning environment.

Number Theory

11am-12:15pm: The students and counselors participate in fun activities, ranging from sports to arts and crafts to any other fun activities the kids can come up with. There are eight activities offered every day, but students only have time to participate in two! They can request whichever activities they prefer, and are assigned to their choices each morning.

Learning Latin dance

12:15-1pm: Lunch. It’s a well-deserved and refreshing break from all of the learning!

1-3pm: We’re back in class. We all work together on cool math problems and ideas.

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3:05-4:05pm: We have a second activity. The kids take another well-deserved brain break, followed by a ten-minute snack break at 4:05.

4:15-6:15: We’re in our last two-hour chunk of classes: the home stretch! Even though this may seem like a lot of class, the kids still stay incredibly engaged and enthusiastic through the entire day.

6:15-7pm: We eat our last meal: dinner. The main part of the day is finished!

7-8:20pm: After dinner, the kids get free time to socialize, play sports, do laundry, shower, or take naps. One of the most popular evening free time activities is just relaxing in the dorm lounge:


8:25-9:25: We have our last academic activity of the day: modules. Modules are a self-paced, self-motivated way of learning: We study topics that are more relevant to school math classes. Our past students say that modules were incredibly helpful in future math classes.


9:30-10:00: Hall meeting! Each floor meets with its two counselors to discuss the day: how it went, and any announcements for the next day. As a counselor, this is definitely one of my favorite parts of the day; I love getting to see the kids at the end of their day as they reflect on how camp is going.

10:30: Room check. Students must be in their rooms and ready for bed.

10:45: Lights out! We want to make sure the campers get a good night’s sleep before the next day begins.

And now…time to do it all over again!

A Day in the Life of BEAM 6

It's Friday which means we are nearly 20% of the way finished with BEAM 6 Los Angeles 2018. Where did the time go??

So, what is a week like at BEAM 6? Each day features:

  • Breakfast
  • Morning class
  • Open Math Time
  • Activities
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon class
  • Open Math Time
  • Activities

Let's dig deep on each of those blocks! 

The day begins with a balanced breakfast, served a la carte in the cafeteria. 

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Then, it's off to class!  Students at BEAM take four classes, one each in the following tracks: Logical Reasoning, Math Fundamentals, Math Team Strategies, and Applied Math. At the beginning of the summer, students selected which version of each class they wanted to take. Their options were:

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  • Logical Reasoning:
    • KenKen Puzzles and More
    • Ultimate Brain Puzzles!
    • Elementary, My Dear!
    • Liars, Truthtellers, and More
  • Math Fundamentals:
    • Fractions and Food
    • Exponents: the Super-Powers of Numbers
    • Patterns, Lines, and Number Rules
  • Applied Math:
    • Introduction to Cryptography
    • Voting: How to Run a Country
    • Computer Programming
  • Math Team Strategies:
    • Using Patterns to Solve Problems
    • Counting Without Counting and Fantastic (Number) Beasts
    • Words, Meet Numbers: An Algebra Story

    Don't those sound fun? How did students choose?? Each instructor gave a course description and a sample problem! Here's one set to consider!

    Elementary, My Dear!


    Course Description:

    Ever wonder how detectives like Sherlock Holmes solve complicated mysteries? It's all in the details. In this class we'll explore the different techniques used to solve complicated riddles and how to apply them in tough mathematical problems.

    Sample problem:

    Mr. Red, Mr. Blue, and Mr. White meet at a restaurant for lunch. Under their coats they are wearing either a red, blue, or white shirt. Mr. Blue says, “Hey, did you notice we are all wearing different colored shirts from our names?” The man wearing the white shirt says, “Wow, Mr. Blue, that’s right.” Can you tell who is wearing what color shirt?

    Open Math Time

    One of the big goals of BEAM is that students spend time doing math they enjoy! So, during Open Math Time, students get a menu of options they can pursue. We encourage students to keep going back to this menu of options during 7th grade, whenever they're looking for a challenge!  During Open Math Time, students might:

    • Reinforce learning from their classes with Problem Sets  
    • Try out the weekly challenge problem
    • Work on the 100 Problem Challenge (more on that later!)
    • Explore the Art of Problem Solving, probably by checking out Alcumus

    Students can work independently, or in groups!  It's really up to what makes each student the most productive. 

    Students Learn Blokus


    Morning activities last for the whole week! They're a time to learn new skills or spend a whole week on a passion. This week's options are:

    • Board Games: Old classics and new! 
    • Decorate Your Binder 
    • Watch the World Cup: Watch live and old soccer games!  
    • Learn to Solve A Rubik’s Cube
    • Rooftop FUN: Steal The Bacon and Sharky Sharky 
    • Learn to Play Settlers: A trading and building board game set in the mythical world of Catan!
    • Learn Dominion: A strategy card game where each time you play it’s different! 


    Then, it's on to lunch (buffet catering from local restaurants), the next class, the next block of Open Math Time, and afternoon activities, which change every day. 

    All in all, it's a busy, exciting day, and we'll have much more to share over the upcoming weeks!

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