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Summer Oshkosh Mathematics Academy

The first “Summer Oshkosh Mathematics Academy” (SOMA), a four-day commuter camp for students entering grades 6-8, will be held at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh this summer on August 12-15, 2019.





2019 Academy Dates: August 12-15

Time: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm

For Students entering Grades 6-8

Registration Fee: $320, $240 or $120.


The Summer Oshkosh Mathematics Academy (SOMA) features student exploration and a creative problem-solving approach to mathematics. Participants will see aspects of mathematics and topics that are not typically part of the middle grades curriculum, and our activities will help middle schoolers develop mathematical habits of mind by actually doing mathematics, that is, investigating, experimenting, posing questions, modeling problems, conjecturing, justifying solutions and critiquing the reasoning of others.





This year's academy will be held on August 12-15, from 8:30 to 4:30 each day. Sessions are led by award-winning UW Oshkosh mathematics professors and math education students. Our aim is to challenge camp participants while exploring the beauty of mathematics, and to provide opportunities to for them to experience mathematics as a creative art. It is our hope that this will encourage them to further their mathematical studies in school, college, and beyond.


Click here to meet our 2019 SOMA faculty and staff.


Downloads for 2019 SOMA Participants:



Academy Description


A typical day at SOMA includes:

  • Mini-course sessions on mathematics featuring in-depth exploration and problem solving
  • Outdoor mathematical activities
  • Lunch at our student cafeteria
  • Math puzzles and games


Mini-courses are longer sessions (2 hours each day) that run the length of the four-day academy. For mini-courses, participants will be broken into two groups of 15-18 students each for greater personal attention. Courses 1 and 2 will be taught concurrently to different groups, and then the groups will switch. The Summer 2019 academy will feature the following two mini-courses for all participants:

Strange New Worlds. Come explore worlds where circles are squares, triangles can be made with three right angles, and the front and back of a piece of paper are the same side. Each day we will explore a different type of geometry and the weird consequences that result from this world. You will investigate, make conjectures, and make arguments about geometry on surfaces such as a Mobius band, a sphere, a torus or a saddle, and what happens when we change the way we measure distances or change the dimension of our space.

Mathematical Creativity. This mini-course will give students experience in posing their own questions, and then conduct mathematical inquiries to try to answer those questions. Campers will create their own formulas to describe physical patterns and structures, explore symmetry and create their own artistic tessellations and frieze patterns, and create and build their own 3d polyhedral shapes and explore, generalize and classify their properties.




Morning and Afternoon Activities are shorter self-contained sessions (1/2 hour or 1 hour) on varying topics such as demonstrations of mathematical card tricks, Informational sessions on careers in mathematics, and outdoor activities, such as a logic mazes and scavenger hunts.

Lunch at Blackhawk Commons. The UW Oshkosh student cafeteria has plenty of all you-care-to-eat choices, including classics, grill, noodles, pizza and deli, soup and salad, bread, beverage and dessert stations. Lunch is included in your registration fee.

Math Exploration Center. We will end each day with time to explore and play in our “Math Exploration Center” with a variety of interactive mathematical demonstrations, puzzles, and games. This will be unstructured time for participants to explore mathematics puzzles and games together with our undergraduate teaching assistants. You can play mathematical games such as Sprouts, Hex, and SET; solve wooden puzzles such as SOMA cubes, Pentaminos, and the Tower of Hanoi, and build logic circuits out of dominos, and investigate our marble computer.




Approximate Daily Schedule:

8:20-8:30        Arrival

8:30-9:00        Morning Activity

9:10-11:20       Mini-Course 1

11:30-12:00     Lunch

12:20-11:20     Afternoon Activity

1:30-3:40        Mini-Course 2

3:50-4:30       Math Exploration Center

4:30-4:40       Departure

Students are supervised by college student TAs through the duration of the academy. Academy participants are encouraged to sit together during meals in Blackhawk Commons. Instruction takes place in Swart Hall.

Program Fees:


Your registration fee covers all instruction and materials, SOMA T-shirt, and lunch each day.

Choose a registration fee that fits your budget

The UW Oshkosh Math Department wants the SOMA camp experience to be available to everyone. We have a voluntary three-tiered pricing system, allowing you to choose the price that works best for you. Naming your price requires no paperwork and in no way influences the experience your child will receive at camp. There are three tiers: Price A: $320, Price B: $240 and Price C: $120. Simply choose the fee that is appropriate for your family.

The true per-student cost for the camp, including the cost of providing instruction, lunch and camp activities, is about $450 per student.  Due to the generosity of our sponsors, this cost is reduced for all campers. Note: The registration fee is non-refundable at all price levels.

  • Price A ($320) reflects the full cost of the camp that is not already covered by UW Oshkosh. If you can afford this level, this would help us to make this math camp available to a family that otherwise wouldn't be able to afford this opportunity for their child.
  • Price B ($240) reflects the partially subsidized rate that we can offer thanks to our sponsors and donors.
  • Price C ($120) is for families needing a more heavily subsidized rate and does not reflect the true cost of operating.


We are able to offer subsidized rates thanks to a Dolciani Mathematics Enrichment Grant through the Mathematical Association of America.

A limited number of additional scholarships may be available thanks to a donation from the Oshkosh Community Fund. Participants who need a scholarship should fill out this separate scholarship application prior to registering online. Scholarship applications should be mailed to the address on the form, or scanned and emailed to Applicants will be notified by email of their scholarship, which would then be applied as a discount code on the online registration.


How to Register your Child for SOMA.


Online Registration is now open through the Mathematics Department's TouchNet store. Registration will remain open until the academy is full. Space will be limited to 36 participants.


Step 1. Register and Pay the registration fee online through TouchNet.


  1. Click here to go to the Mathematics Department store at TouchNet.
  2. The screen will look like the image above. At the bottom of the page there are three "products".  To begin, click on the "Summer Oshkosh Mathematics Academy"  product at the bottom right.  (Note: you do not need to buy "Lunch Ticket", which is for a different event. Lunch is included in the academy registration fee).
  3. On the next screen, select the price level that is appropriate for your family. (See description of the program fees in the previous section), then click "Add to Cart". (Leave the quantity as "1", even if you are going to be registering a second child. You will have the opportunity to register the second child later before you checkout.
  4. On the next screen, you will enter in your child's registration information. Then click "Continue".
  5. On the next screen, you will see a summary of the information you entered. If all the information is correct, and you aren't registering a second child, click "Checkout".  If you want to sign up and pay for a second child, click "Continue Shopping" instead, and then repeat steps 2-5 again). If there is any error in the information, you can click on the small trash can to remove your order, then start over).
  6. On the first checkout page, called "Delivery Address", enter your email. (The mobile phone and mobile carrier can be left blank).
  7. On the next screen, select "Credit Card" as your payment method, enter your credit card information, and then enter the Name and Billing Address for the credit card, then click "continue" to finish your online registration.
  8. You should then receive an "Order Confirmation" email from that will show your "purchase" of Summer Oshkosh Mathematics Academy, amount paid, and the registration information you have submitted.

Step 2: Submit you child's Waiver Form and Health Information Form.

In order for your child to participate in this on-campus event, UW Oshkosh policy requires that you submit a Waiver Form and a Health Information Form.

  1. Download, print out, fill out and sign the Waiver, Medical Authorization and Photo Release form.
  2. Download, print out, fill out and sign the Health Information Form.
  3. Bring these completed forms to the sign in desk on the first day of the camp.


Please contact Eric Kuennen at for questions about this program.

by Eric Kuennen last modified Aug 05, 2019 05:59 PM
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