At 6 Points Sci-Tech Academy, our staff use professionally-developed curricula and lesson plans to guide campers in bringing to life the dreams that capture their imaginations. Using a hands-on, project-based approach, campers learn and create in a collaborative environment. Campers choose one primary track, or “workshop,” where they spend 2½ hours each day working on projects they design. Workshops are taught by our lead instructors, who are professional educators (such as science teachers) who bring both a passion for the subject and experience working with children. They are supported by college-age counselors majoring in fields of science and technology and actively engaged in learning and research. Sci-Tech is open to campers entering grades 5-10.

In the Robotics Workshop, our campers become engineers, bringing their ideas to life through hands-on building and computer programming. Learning from experienced instructors, campers use a wide variety of tools to explore the mechanics of robots and the programming necessary to make them work. Campers are divided by grades and/or skill level into groups to create an age-appropriate program that is both intellectually stimulating and challenging!

Beginning campers will learn the basics of robot construction and programming. Working with gears, sensors, and motors, they teach their robots to accomplish a series of smaller challenges. Once they’ve mastered moving, turning, and sensing colors and distance, the campers collaborate to work on larger projects. Examples include Robot Soccer, Robot Tic-Tac-Toe, or a Rube Goldberg machine – a whimsical device using their robots to complete a basic task in the most convoluted way possible.

Campers attending for multiple years in robotics or more experienced campers have an opportunity to develop their learning further, where they will use similar tools with more complex modeling and programming with new projects and challenges. As campers move beyond the basic functions of robotics, they will begin to learn more about gear ratios, as well as more in-depth programming that combines visual programming with coding in Robot C, a common programming language used for Robotics programming. With a greater understanding of robot mechanics, campers can customize their electrical circuitry and designs to create even more intricate robots.

Our program uses the VEX Robotics platform, a popular and advanced platform for robotics competitions.

Video games are the entertainment medium of the 21st century, with a global audience of almost 3 billion, made up of a wide variety of ages and genders, and an industry revenue that surpasses even Hollywood’s! But video games are more than just entertaining! They also help players hone problem-solving skills, hand-eye coordination, and creative thinking through interactive storytelling and complex virtual worlds. Living at the intersection of technology and art, video game design is one of the most exciting, expanding, and far-reaching skills to learn in the modern age.

Our Video Game Design Workshop teaches the craft of game design, giving the skills you need to creatively bring your story or adventure to life. A camper spends the first half of the workshop digging deep into the principles of game design through the creation of an on-paper game concept with their team. The second half of the workshop is dedicated to bringing that vision to life with a variety of different game design tools and software.

This design workshop begins with an examination of the fundamental elements of game design before diving into prototyping, playtesting, and redesigning games with activities that teach essential design skills. In small teams that simulate the collaborative spirit of the video game industry, campers will design their very own games using a variety of programming tools. Our professional instructors carefully place campers in pairs or trios with similar goals, interests, and skill levels to ensure that campers learn in the best possible environment. Campers will also think about how games reflect the values of the game developers who made them, and how Sci-Tech values come into play when we seriously consider the meaning of our games.

There are a wide array of tools to work with, so even returning campers or experienced developers will be challenged to discover and grow here at camp. Tools and platforms used in past workshops include: Scratch (perfect for beginners), Stencyl (great for 2D platformers and top-down games), Kodu (for campers interested in 3D game design), GameBlox (good for learning/practicing object-oriented programming), TaleBlazer (to make location-based augmented-reality games like Pokémon Go), and Unity3D (a professional-grade advanced game engine).

In addition to design and production skills, campers will also learn the entrepreneurial art of pitching a game idea. Being able to describe a game idea quickly, clearly, and in a way that gets an audience interested and excited about your game is a crucial part of game development. It’s also a lot of fun, and a great way to work on your communication skills while getting valuable feedback to help guide your next great game idea! Working together, all campers will develop the story, game mechanics, characters, backgrounds and other elements of their video games. After the session, campers will be able to access their games from home to play and continue development work if desired.

Join us this summer and use your passion for play to create the games you’ve always wanted to see in the world!

Earthquakes. Volcanoes. Tornados. Hurricanes. Awesome in their destructive power, these natural events remind us of the incredible power of nature on our dynamic and living planet. This summer in Earth & Sky, campers going into grades 8-10 will learn the science behind different types of natural disasters and our ability, or inability, to control and predict these events.

Natural disasters are extreme, sudden events caused by environmental factors that injure people and damage property and are something of an occupational hazard when you're living on Earth. While many natural disasters are completely out of our control, over the years scientists have been able to develop methods of attempting to predict them while engineers have been developing ways of surviving natural disasters with our buildings intact!

This summer, campers in Earth & Sky will explore the four different types of natural disasters: Geological Disasters (e.g. earthquakes, volcanos), Hydrological disasters (e.g. floods, tsunamis), Meteorological Disasters (e.g. blizzards, tornados), and Cosmic Disasters (e.g. asteroid impacts, solar flares). Through hands-on and interactive projects and experiments, campers will discover the scientific principles behind the occurrence of natural disasters and what we can do to mitigate the damage.

Campers will answer questions like: When does a natural event become a natural disaster? How do scientific instruments, like seismographs, work and how do they predict natural disasters? What is a hazard map and how do scientists make them? Why has there been an increase in the number of hurricanes, tornados, wildfires, and nor'easters in recent years? What is the relationship between natural disasters and climate change? How do engineers and infrastructure affect the outcome of natural disasters? What is the purpose of natural disasters, and what benefits can be derived from them? How have humans viewed natural disasters throughout history?

This summer don't miss the chance to be blown away by the earth-shattering science behind natural disasters, pun intended! This workshop is perfect for campers who are new to camp or as a great continuation for those who have experienced our Earth and Sky program in previous summers. Come and enjoy Earth & Sky this summer and discover what makes living our lives on Earth so special (and sometimes a little scary too)! This workshop is Upper Camp only. There will be Earth Science chugim (electives) available for our Lower Camp campers who are interested in learning more about planet Earth!

In the Digital Film Production workshop, campers take ownership of the entire movie creation process. From character development and scriptwriting to directing, shooting, and editing, campers will have the opportunity to engage in all aspects of film production and creatively explore a whole new world of storytelling. Younger campers and those new to film production form production teams and write, film, and edit their production together with our professional-level equipment and specialist instructors.

More experienced campers in our upper camp will have the opportunity to develop more advanced skills and camera techniques, focusing more on technical skills and the editing process. Campers have the option to create a portfolio of work while learning skills in areas such as cinematography, green-screening, sound FX, lighting, using filters, color grading, motion graphics, and more. These campers will leave with a video-folio of techniques learned throughout the session.

Digital Film Production provides a unique combination of technology and art. Our campers learn to effectively use technology – from our video cameras and microphones to diverse computer software options – to realize their artistic visions. Our instructors work with campers to set up scenes, create their sight lines, adjust for lighting, and film multiple angles.

Once the footage is filmed, campers use professional tools in the Adobe professional suite to get hands-on experience in editing and special effects, music scoring, and sound effects. Through the project-based creation process, campers grow their skill set and explore the fascinating world of digital film production.

Discover how a pinch of curiosity and a dash of science are the key ingredients in our food science workshop! There are so many different types of learning all rolled into this one-of-a-kind Sci-Tech experience! Food science is the applied science devoted to the study of food that draws from biology, chemistry, nutrition, engineering, and biochemistry, just to name a few!

In this workshop, you will learn about the chemical building blocks of food, such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats and water, and the reactions they undergo during processing, cooking, and storage. There are so many things to discover when it comes to food! Why is Himalayan salt pink? When you put things in the freezer, what happens to the molecules in different kinds of food? What makes bread rise in the oven? How is rock candy made? And these questions are just the appetizers!

Of course, no Sci-Tech meal is complete without a healthy portion of tikkun olam! As our burgeoning food scientists at Sci-Tech study the physical, microbiological, and chemical makeup of food to learn how to create safe, nutritious, and delicious meals, they’ll also learn about the ethics of food. What is hunger? Why do some people have access to nutritious food while others don’t? Where does the Reform Jewish community stand on GMOs? Food is a central part of Judaism and learning more about the scientific and ethical aspects of your food is sure to expand your Jewish knowledge (and your stomach!).

Come join us and dig into the smorgasbord of science behind the food we eat every day!

If you have concerns about food allergies, please contact the office before registering for this workshop.

Computer programming code is part of our everyday lives. In our Programming and Coding workshop, you’ll not only learn the most sought-after skill in the 21st century, you’ll also have fun in an environment that’s all about curiosity, playfulness, and logic. In our Programming and Coding workshop, campers at all levels will be able to learn, grow, and develop their coding skills in a hands-on, project-based environment with expert instructors.

This summer we will be learning the Swift programming language to practice computer logic and develop iOS (Apple) applications. There’s never been a better time to learn Apple’s new programming language. Since its launch in 2014, Swift has become one of the most popular programming languages in the world, ranking 12th on the TIOBE Index, and has already supplanted Apple’s original development language, Objective-C!

Swift is designed with education and fun in mind. The engineers over at Apple designed Swift to be powerful enough for professional developers and expert campers, while still being easy for a novice to pick up! This makes it perfect for our multi-skill level workshop environment at Sci-Tech, where we design workshops with both returning and new campers in mind. Campers with little experience in programming will learn the ins and outs of different software to think like a programmer, and by the end of the session, they’ll have a working app they can share with friends and family. More advanced campers can build on their previous knowledge to develop increasingly more complex programs, and with the switch to Swift, campers returning to Programming and Coding will have the opportunity to learn a brand new development environment!

Whether you love the challenge of programming logic puzzles, or enjoy the thrill of creating apps that can improve the world, the Programming and Coding workshop is the right place for you this summer!

From the common cold to life-threatening illnesses, doctors are charged with solving the mysteries of the human body. When you go to the doctor, do you wonder what they are looking for when they listen to your lungs and your heart, examine your ears and look at your throat? What exactly is your physician thinking and what will they discover when they order a test, and how does that test work? What story will it tell?

Campers will use critical thinking skills in order to understand the mechanisms and the signs and symptoms of common (and some not so common) medical problems, as well as the critical tools and technology that are used to make a correct diagnosis.

Using both basic and advanced principles and practices of medicine, campers will explore different body systems and anatomy relevant to real medical scenarios, and understand how diseases work, how the body responds to illness, as well as ways in which eating/exercise habits may affect our health. Campers will be presented with patient cases that will lead them to discover the human body using modern technology and real-life samples.

Each summer, this workshop explores new ailments and symptoms and introduces campers to different medical studies, so even those campers who were in this workshop in previous years will have a great time being doctors once again. They will look at the body through many lenses – sometimes literally! With probing questions to obtain a medical history, a physical exam and tools like stethoscopes, electrocardiograms, sphygmomanometers, imaging, laboratory results, ultrasound, microscopes and more, campers will be able to diagnose and solve medical mysteries just like our doctors do every day.

Once upon a time, Sci-Tech had a chug (elective) called LARP (Live-Action Role-Play). This chug was so popular that the powers that be decreed it would be its own workshop. Now for the first time, campers will have the opportunity to participate in a story of epic proportions. Using their imagination, problem-solving and storytelling skills daily, campers will participate in interactive role-play that encourages them to be physically, socially and mentally active. This year not only will campers live the story, but they will also learn the science behind it!

LARP is a type of role-playing game where the participants physically act out their characters’ actions, often in costume and with props. The players pursue goals within a fictional setting represented by the real world while interacting with each other in character. This summer, our workshop will place an emphasis on physics while incorporating various elements from astronomy and geology. Campers will discover the science behind world compositions, planetary orbits, and several methodologies related to terraforming. They will then use these case studies to build their own fictional world and setting. Campers will also practice skills in engineering and design while foam-smithing their own gear and Boffer weapons!

After they finish crafting their world and their gear, there will be daily quests around camp. Campers will use their characters and newfound knowledge to interact with each other, mythical creatures (including some from Jewish folklore), and characters. During our adventures, campers will work as a team, learn creative problem solving, and will actively practice our Sci-Tech values like respect, patience, and curiosity. There will be a combination of parlor LARPs (no physical contact) and of “light-touch” LARPs, where there is some contact from foam weapons (like “tag” but with foam gear). Our quests will often be outside so campers will strengthen both their minds and bodies!

Come join us in the Science of LARP, where adventure, learning, and friends await!

Sci-Tech is proud to announce the launch of our new workshop: Digital Art Lab! This summer campers will be diving into their imaginations by exploring and experimenting with the connections between art and technology. This summer, the theme of our Digital Art Lab will be "Experimentation”!

Technology is increasingly recognized as a useful and valued tool that aids in the creative process. It is also an emerging new medium ripe for exploration and experimentation, and there's nothing Sci-Tech loves more than a good experiment! We'll be discovering a wide variety of digital art tools, from learning how to use industry-standard software like Adobe Photoshop to playing with experimental digital techniques like data bending and glitch art, and even exploring what it's like to sculpt in a different reality... Virtual Reality that is! We'll explore digital illustration techniques, like how to manipulate layers and filters, and create our own original pieces, including animated gifs and pixel art. And did we mention yet that there will be MEMES?!

For the first half of the session, campers will briefly cover a variety of different digital art techniques, with the final days of the session dedicated to creating their own digital masterpiece. By the end of the session, campers will not only leave with the beginnings of a completed project for their portfolios but with a list of different software and internet tools they can use from home after camp ends. Campers will also gain a practical understanding of the ethics behind digital experimentation, especially as it relates to copyright and content ownership.

This workshop is all about curiosity, playfulness, and computer logic, so consider this your invitation to turn your imagination into a technical reality this summer! Drawing experience is beneficial, but not required to enjoy the newest addition to Sci-Tech's workshop offerings.

Who are you? Why are you considering this workshop? What are you thinking right now? And what exactly are thoughts anyways?! Just like the ancient rabbis, modern behavioral scientists ask questions about the human mind every day, and use “human subjects research” to answer all sorts of questions about how people think, learn, and make decisions! But what exactly is a human subjects research experiment? And how do we conduct research on the human mind without becoming mad evil scientists?

In this workshop, campers will learn about the different types of experiments scientists use to understand the mind and the brain! We’re going to design our own human behavior experiments and see what we can learn about our camp community and our friends! Campers will become authentic researchers by analyzing the data from their own experiments using the computer programming techniques professional scientists use every day. We’re even going to practice the ancient Jewish art of “peer review!”

This summer explore the world, wielding nothing but the scientific method, and become an adventurer of cognitively epic proportions. Bravely dive deep into the most mysterious depths of all… our minds! We’re so PSYCHED to see you in this special-edition workshop!

Campers also choose two chugim (pronounced hoo-GEEM, meaning electives) each week. This provides campers with the opportunity to explore new areas of interest. Our chugim are taught by the counselors and the lead instructors, who work with our directors to bring their passions to the campers. Examples of past chugim include:

  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • 3D Design & Printing
  • Rubik’s Cube Solving
  • Flight and RC Airplanes
  • Magic
  • Java Programming
  • Python Programming
  • Medical Biology
  • Cryptology
  • LARPing
  • Rocketry
  • Ukulele
  • Food Science
  • Virtual Worlds (using Minecraft)
  • Arduino Programming
  • Digital Music / Recording Studio

Chugim are selected by our campers once they arrive at camp. Chugim change from summer to summer and even from week to week. Allowing campers to choose these chugim gives them the freedom to explore interests they may not have even thought about before camp and allows our campers to select activities with others who share the same interests.

During our sports and athletics period, campers exercise their bodies, something just as important as exercising their minds. On one of our many fields or courts, campers can play tennis, soccer, Frisbee, kickball, capture the flag, and Gaga. Other options include Quidditch, nature hikes, dance, and Zumba.

Days at 6 Points Sci-Tech Academy are packed with activities to keep campers engaged! Our goal is to create a balanced, well-rounded experience in which campers can both dive into their areas of interest, and have the opportunity to try new things.

Start End Activity
7:15 7:55 Boker Tov (wakeup)! and Nikayon (cleaning)
8:00 8:15 Boker Big Bang all camp gathering
8:15 9:00 Breakfast
8:15 9:55 Chug (Elective) 1
10:00 10:45 Sababa! (Lawn Games, Gaga, Board Games, and more)
10:50 12:25 Workshop
10:00 1:15 Lunch
1:15 2:05 Menucha (rest hour)
2:10 3:00 Sports and Athletics
3:10 4:00 Workshop
4:00 4:15 Snack
4:15 5:05 Chug (Elective) 2
5:20 6:15 Shower Time
6:30 7:15 Dinner
7:15 7:30 Song Session
7:30 8:30 Evening Program
8:30 9:00 Getting ready for bed/ Night time Ritual
9:00 9:30 9:00 – 5th and 6th grade lights out 9:30 – 7th and 8th grade lights out 10:00 – 9th and 10th grade lights out

Good Morning – Boker Tov! and Cleaning – Nikayon Counselors wake their campers each morning so that the campers have enough time to get dressed, brush their teeth, and comb their hair. Additionally, campers will make their beds, organize their cubbies, and fill their laundry bags.  Campers will also be in charge of tidying the common rooms and lounges before they head to Boker Big Bang.

Morning Ritual – Boker Big Bang One of our campers’ favorite parts of the day! Before breakfast, the entire camp community will come together to sing a few songs, say a few blessings, and perform a cool science demonstration – making something explode! Our faculty of the week will tie in a Jewish text or story to relate to the experiment of the day.

Breakfast – Aruchat Boker As a camp community, we begin our meal by reciting Hamotzi, the blessing before the meal.  See our sample menu section for a selection of breakfasts.  We end our meal with the singing of Birkat Hamazon, the blessing after the meal.

Workshops Campers will work in small groups in one of the eight workshop areas they selected – Video Game Design, Robotics, Digital Film Production, Earth and Sky, Forensics, BioZone, or 3D Animation.  They’ll have 90 minutes every morning and 60 minutes every afternoon to work on their developing their skills and projects in their core areas.

Electives – Chugim Each week, campers select two chugim (electives) – one in the morning and one in the afternoon. This gives them an opportunity to experience lots of different activities throughout the session. The chugim are run by all of our staff members, who get an opportunity to share something they’re passionate about with the campers.  Some chugim include: food science, rocketry, chemistry, magic, and digital music production.

Sababa! In addition to teaching our campers about science and technology, we want to foster a strong Jewish community. Part of having a community means giving campers an opportunity to socialize and be with one another in a structured environment. During Sababa campers are together on the main lawn and have an opportunity to play a variety of lawn games, gaga, and participate in some counselor led games. Sababa gives campers the chance to socialize with one another in an informal setting and get to know kids from other halls. Once or twice during each session campers have the opportunity to hear from special guest speakers and plan Shabbat during this time.

Lunch – Aruchat Tzohorayim Lunch functions like breakfast, starting with Hamotzi and ending with Birkat Hamazon.  A sample of lunches can be found in the menu section, and the salad bar and fresh fruit are always available.

Rest Hour – Menucha After an activity-paced morning, campers need to take a break.  During Menucha, campers may sleep, write letters home to family and friends, read, or play quietly with their friends in the lounge or common areas.

Sports At 6 Points Sci-Tech, we believe in keeping both our minds and bodies actives.  Campers will be able to select from several sports or outdoor activities each day, like soccer, basketball, Quidditch, or Gaga. This activity is led by our professionally trained coaches who help campers stay active and to understand the importance of a health body.

Shower Time Campers get ready for dinner by showering and cleaning up after a long day.  This is also a time when they can hang out in the common areas.

Dinner – Aruchat Erev We start dinner with Hamotzi and end with Birkat Hamazon.  Like lunch, the salad bar and fresh fruit will always be available, along with a wide variety of dinner options.

Evening Program – Tochnit Erev Our evening programs are fun, active programs around camp that our counselors, instructors, and leadership team help to plan and run.  Evening programs may include scavenger hunts around camp, Israel-themed activities, special guest performances, etc.

Snack Campers will receive a snack in the afternoon to keep them going throughout the busy day!

Dorm Time Before campers go to sleep, counselors have the opportunity to plan a short activity just for their campers, which may be a debrief of the day, a game of cards, or other organized activity.  Campers say Shema together before heading to sleep!