Day 2

Today started with morning exercises and breakfast. The food at Silver Lake is fresh and well prepared and some of it comes from their garden right outside; the leftovers are composted. The cafeteria has a warm and woodsey feel. At mealtimes, the staff tell campers stories of inspiring incidents from the lives of scientists.
 
The lecture series at Sigma is after breakfast and today students had a choice of three lectures from Stony Brook professors. Fractals, fear, and pheromones was a favorite -- those in attendance learned about the neurophysiology of the stress response from professor Lilianne Mujica-Parodi. Other lectures available were on Pictures of Fractions by the world famous Dennis Sullivan and Symmetries in Math by Moira Chas, a hands-on demonstration of the 17 symmetries of the plane. All the lectures were well attended and got excellent reviews.  
 
Today was also the first day of semilabs where students get in depth hands on experience on some interesting subject. The science of cooking semilab learned about the Maillard reaction and prepared a white sauce which they then used to bake chicken and mushrooms and fish. In Codes and Ciphers, students learned about early ways of encrypting text -- even in cuniform. 
 
Ater lunch, the campers attended a second round of semilabs, including Beginner Robotics with NXT. Next up was the inaugural round of the Sigma Tournament. Teams competed on problems in math and physics. The Sigma Tournament was followed promptly by a hearty soccer game on the main field.
 
After dinner, campers had a chance to choose from a wide variety of workshops, run predominantly by counselors. One of the highlights was Alex's: Newton, Descartes, and Mango Ice Cream. The very popular workshops are run multiple times, so any campers who were on the waitlist have a chance to attend.
 
During evening club time, many of the younger campers watched animated shorts outside the Pines cabin. Other campers got a chance to learn West Coast Swing in the Dining Hall. All in all everyone had an amazing time!