The Home of Midwood Science Research

Application for Advanced Science Research (a.k.a. 1.05)

Posted on Monday, November 23, 2015 by for Juniors, Seniors.

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All juniors and seniors with a currently active research placement who would like to apply for a 1.05 weighted research course (Advanced Science Research) for the fall semester of 2015 must fill out, print, sign, and present this form to their supervising teacher along with an up to date lab log. See your supervising teacher on Monday, November 30 unless you were told to do something different.

For seniors, an "active" placement in the fall is one with 16 hours (on average) of lab log entries per month for September, October, and November.

For juniors, an "active" placement in the fall is one that began any day before Thanksgiving. A placement is not official until your mentor has contacted me saying you have been accepted to work in their lab. It should also state the date you began working there. Some of you have done this and some of you have not. The official record of this is kept in the Google Docs spreadsheet called "mentors (shared)". You were all sent an invitation to this spreadsheet in October. View it and check your status. If you see a date next to your mentor’s name, you’re OK. If not, contact your mentor and ask them to email me as soon as possible.

Junior Teacher Assignments

Posted on Friday, November 13, 2015 by for Juniors.

Junior Teacher Assignments Updated Thursday, November 18, 2015
Mr. Elert Ms. Mosley Ms. Sullivan
Aruba Areej Ilham Ahmed Mahmoud Abouelkheir
Noor Asif Ruthbernick Bastien Amna Aslam
Angela Baraker Zenab Jamil Brianna Ku
Rachel Chen Jasleen Kaur Pauletta Lazarevskiy
Michelle Fogel Sophia Khoja Danielle LoPresti
Sabrina Gorodetsky Erica Levin Nomon Mohammad
Michael Grandel Lilin Liu Abeer Naeem
Reanna Hyatt Hui Yi Fiona Ng He Hufsa Tasnim
Danielle Itshaik Jennifer Phu Whitney Wong
Bitan Kar Marzana Rafa Wensi Wu
Vivian Luu Zainab Salahudin Minna Zeldin
Allan Nosov Elizabeth Skapley Yang Fan (Angel) Zou
Marco Ramirez    

I count 48

Posted on Tuesday, November 10, 2015 by for Lectures.

Midwood Science was well represented at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) for the 10th annual lectures on Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research. This year’s lectures were more about general biomedical research than specific research on cancer. Dr. Anna-Katerina Hadjantonakis (or "Anna-Kat" as the President of MSKCC Craig B. Thompson called her) talked about her amazing imaging technique that allowed her to make 3D movies of cells in developing mouse embryos. Dr. Cole Haynes taught us how mitochondria (the cell’s powerhouses) are affected by many different diseases from cancers to bacterial infections. Closing the show was Dr. Joao Xavier, a systems biologist who talked about everything from the growth of biofilms, to the spread of cancers, to the microbiome living inside our guts. "It’s about finding common principles in biology," he said.

Midwood was the best represented school at the event with what looks like 48 students in attendance. I know that it may seem like I am always writing about how some event is our "best" or "biggest" ever, but this honestly is our biggest year ever at MSKCC. The lectures were great, the students were great, and the pizza was pretty good too.

Public Lectures for the Fall Semester

Posted on Sunday, November 8, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Lectures.

Tue. Nov.
What: Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research
When: Tuesday, November 10, 2015, 5:30–7:30
Where: Rockefeller Labs
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
430 E 67th St (between First and York Avenues)
New Work NY 10065
Registration: Now!
Thu. Dec.
What: Brooklyn Frontiers in Science (Art & Chemistry)
When: Thursday, December 3, 2015, 5:30–7:00
Where: Pfizer Auditorium
NYU Tandon School of Engineering
5 Metrotech Center
Brooklyn NY 11201
Registration: Anytime before the end of November.
Sat. Jan.
What: Talking Science (Medicine)
When: Saturday, January 9, 2016,10:00–3:00
Where: Caspary Auditorium
The Rockefeller University
1230 York Avenue at East 66th Street
New York NY 10065
Registration: Opens on Tuesday, December 1. Limited to 10 students.

2015 Brooklyn Frontiers in Science Public Lecture

Posted on Friday, November 6, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Lectures.

The Brooklyn Subsection of the American Chemical Society and the NYU Tandon School of Engineering present a free lecture to the public. The Science of Art and Color: Four thousand years of experimentation and discovery through the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Dr. Marco Leona
The Science of Art and Color
Brooklyn Frontiers in Science Lecture
Thursday, December 3, 2015, 5:30–7:00 PM
Pfizer Auditorium
NYU Tandon School of Engineering
5 Metrotech Center
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Dr. Marco Leona is the David H. Koch Scientist in Charge in the Department of Scientific Research at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

If you are interested in attending, please register here. Midwood Science Research students will receive extra credit if they attend and submit the public lecture assignment to Mr. Elert the day after. An attendance photo will also be taken.

Juniors interested in chemistry should consider using this scientific paper by Dr. Leona for Assignment 4: Analysis of a Contemporary Paper.

AP Capstone Combines English and Science

Posted on Thursday, November 5, 2015 by for Media.

AP Capstone, a rigorous program designed to prepare students for college level literature research and writing, is now being offered at Midwood, one of the six high schools in New York that currently participates in this program.

According to the College Board, AP Capstone, a two year program, is designed to provide students with core academic skills necessary for college. The program is broken into two classes: AP Seminar and AP Research. AP Seminar focuses on teaching students the skills necessary for literature research, presentation and writing research based essays. Those skills will be used later in AP Research to write an academic paper, present the paper, and defend it.

To implement AP Capstone, the English and Science departments have worked together to redesign the curriculum of the Research program to meet the standards..

"AP Capstone is a class which prepares students for college and allows them to explore their own interest," said Mr. Kamil Kraszewski, AP seminar teacher. "The class is focused on teaching students to conduct research, write college level papers and create argumentative presentations."

This course supports the New York State standards through the implementation of Common Core. For example, standard CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.9-10.1 requires students to be able to "write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence."

Mr. Kraszewski added, "It’s [the class] meant to foster independence, because just about everything we do I set the way for the students, but the way they get there is up to them. "

The class is designed as an independent research class in which students learn necessary skills, such as using online databases and understanding how to compile information, and use those skill sets to perform their own research at home.

"Its really about the revision process," said Mr. Kraszewski. "I feel that many high school students feel that once they do something it’s done, and this is again meant to prepare students a process where revising is so important."

To ensure student’s work is at a college level, the revision process is focused heavily. The student’s works are revised a multitude of times; feedback is given to the students by their peers, Mr. Kraszewski, and other teachers.

"Sophomore research is a complementary course for the AP Seminar Program," said Ms. Shaniece Mosley, sophomore research teacher. "The projects we do in sophomore research align themselves to topics that are covered in the AP Seminar class."

Students in the AP Capstone program are also part of the Research Program within the Science Department. The Research Program is a three year course that is designed to provide students with the opportunity to perform independent scientific research is various college laboratories throughout the city.

"Our curriculum has aligned itself the requirements of the AP Seminar curriculum in many ways, but the essence of what do have done in sophomore research in previous years is still there." Ms. Mosley added. "Students are doing hands on projects, learning about issues in science, doing meaningful research, evaluating sources of information, and presenting their findings to each other."

The sophomore research class is designed to provide students with basics of research methods: lab safety, basic lab procedures, finding and using sources, and presenting conclusions. These basics are aligned with the AP Seminar curriculum as AP Seminar is heavily focused on scientific literature research.

Ms. Mosley said , "We are trying to assist students in becoming scientists, we want our students to think like scientists, perform experiments, evaluate information, and eventually come to their own conclusion about the world around them."

Within the Research program, juniors perform independent research in citywide college laboratories, and during senior year, the conclusions the students arrived at are used to write scientific research papers to be submitted into various national and statewide competitions. It is being debated whether AP Research should be incorporated into the student’s schedules during junior or senior year.

"AP Capstone is a different program. We had AP Literature, and then we added AP Language and Composition, and now we added AP Capstone," said Mr. Kraszewski. "Up until three years ago, if you were a junior or a senior you had four options, you took the regular English class, Journalism, Creative Writing. or AP Literature. But now you have so many more options to pick from, and we want students to have these choices and options."

Written by Victor Lee and Jacky Lin (Class of 2016).
This article originally appeared in the October 2015 edition of Argus.

Maker Faire Sparks Creativity

Posted on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 by for Media.

Three dimensional (3D) printers, a mechanical horse, a 28 foot robot, and life-size mouse traps were just some of the scientific makings that were displayed at the 6th Annual Maker Faire.

"It was an awe inspiring experience which triggered my creative genius," said Zainab Salahudin ’17.

Thousands of people joined the Maker Movement on September 26 and 27 at the New York Hall of Science in Queens to experience the tech-influenced Do It Yourself (DIY) community. According to, there were two ticket options: single day passes and weekend passes. Tickets ranged from $30-$80 for adults (18 and up) and $20-$50 for youth and students (ages 3-17).

Junior and Senior Research students were given the opportunity to volunteer for extra credit and experience Maker Faire for free. According to Mr. Glenn Elert, research teacher, a total of 16 seniors, 10 juniors, and three alumni participated.

"I volunteered last year for extra credit and believed it was a valuable experience so there was nothing to lose volunteering again this year," said Michelle Do ’16.

Volunteers had jobs that included: helping out at the Maker Camp, giving out safety waivers, assisting makers, and providing information. Volunteer shifts ranged between four to five hours.

"I enjoyed volunteering at Maker Faire," said Wensi Wu ’17. "I got a free pass and many benefits such as a passport with my picture and a T-shirt.

People were welcomed by a 28 foot tall robot that was made from 95 percent airplane parts and had head and arms that emitted fire. It took its maker, Shane Evans, seven months to complete the masterpiece that weighed approximately 870 pounds.

"It’s very inspiring to see someone take something so ordinary and make a complex machine out of it," said Salahudin.

With a total of six zones, one more than last year, there were activities for all age groups. Children, youth, and adults were able to engage in craft and hands-on activities, drone races, and enjoy scientific musical performances played by a fire organ. Visitors were able to participate in these activities with an activity wristband, which were obtained from some of the volunteers and information tents.

Mie Abouelkheir ’16 presented a workshop on the forces of flights and catapults in Zone 4 and represented the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum. She received the opportunity to present in Maker Faire because she was an Intrepid Teen.

"I really enjoyed teaching and seeing parents and their children interact with each other and learn from each other," said Abouelkheir. "It also helped me practice my public speaking skills."

Maker Faire has grown throughout the years and can be found throughout the world. The original maker faire began with approximately 50,000 people and the amount increases every year.

Maker Faire continues to expand and become known throughout the world. According to, there are Maker Faires in Tokyo, Rome, Detroit, Oslo and Shenzhen.

"It’s a great event for showing off ideas for constructing," said Mr. Elert.

Written by Xiao Ying Huang and Jocelyn Chen (Class of 2016).
This article originally appeared in the October 2015 edition of Argus.

Researchers Battle for Spot in Siemens Finals

Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2015 by for Media, Siemens.

Senior researchers rocked the new school year by competing in the 17th Siemens Competition.

Siemens Award Medalion

The competition was founded by the Siemens Foundation in 1999 to encourage students to participate in intensive research to improve their understanding of the core values of scientific study. Last year alone, over $500,000 in scholarships were awarded to over 2,000 applicants.

"I worked at a lab throughout the entire summer at Brooklyn College," said Asia Le ’16. "I learned a lot about scientific research while having fun."

Juniors and seniors in the Midwood Science Research program participate in college level research in laboratories throughout the city, in various fields of scientific research. With a minimum of 15 hours spent in laboratories, most students spend much more to complete their individual research experiment with the goals to complete a scientific paper describing their projects and results.

Unlike previous years, the competition was revamped, with an eco-friendly application and an earlier deadline.

"I’m so glad they’re not using paper anymore," said Mr. Glenn Elert, research coordinator. "Paperwork is a pain to send. We used to carry a box filled with stacks of paper and ship it using FedEx."

Shifting from September 30, the deadline this year was the 21, 9 days earlier. With only five school days to prepare students for both the paperwork and the research report required for the competition, time was of the essence.

"The earlier deadline is good because it forces the students to work fast," Mr. Elert added. " It free up their time for the rest of the semester."

"I stayed until tenth period on the last day to finish the application for Siemens as there was so little time I had to complete it," said Max Miloslavsky ’16. " Everything was so rushed this year."

Although the researchers were required to start preparing their lab reports over the summer, many students had incomplete reports and that was only their first hurdle.

"I thought my lab report was pretty good at first," Miloslavsky ’16 added, "but when I went over it there were parts missing and awkwardly worded."

In addition to fixing lab reports, another challenge the researchers faced were incomplete experiments. Some student’s projects were not complete and were ineligible to enter; however, they will be considered for the prestigious Intel Talent Search Competition that will be held in November.

Although no spots were awarded to Midwood researchers this year, they will continue to battle for awards in the Intel Talent Search.

Written by Victor Lee (Class of 2016).
This article originally appeared in the October 2015 edition of Argus.

Your package has been delivered

Posted on Tuesday, November 3, 2015 by for Intel STS.

Your package has been delivered
Tracking # 774879694338
Ship date:
Mon, 11/2/2015
Glenn Elert
Midwood High School
Brooklyn, NY 11210
Delivery progress bar
Delivery date:
Tue, 11/3/2015 9:52 am
Intel STS Transcripts
Society for Science and the Public
1719 N Street NW
Shipment Facts
Our records indicate that the following package has been delivered.
Tracking number: 774879694338
Status: Delivered: 11/03/2015 09:52 AM Signed for By: E.SWOOPES
Reference: Intel Transcripts
Signed for by: E.SWOOPES
Delivery location: WASHINGTON, DC
Delivered to: Receptionist/Front Desk
Service type: FedEx Priority Overnight
Packaging type: FedEx Envelope
Number of pieces: 1
Weight: 0.50 lb.
Special handling/Services: Deliver Weekday

2015 Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research

Posted on Monday, October 26, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Lectures.

On Tuesday, November 10, 2015, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will host its tenth annual Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research lecture for high school and college students. (Members of the public are also welcome to attend.) The event will take place from 5:30–7:30 PM on the first floor of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Rockefeller Research Laboratories building (430 East 67th Street, between York and First Avenues).

Registration is easy, but finding a seat with a good view isn’t. This event has gotten so popular that the folks at MSKCC needed to set up satellite viewing stations in adjacent conference rooms. Get there a bit early if possible. Light refreshments have traditionally been served before the lectures begin (pizza, chips, fruit, soda, coffee). Single use MetroCards will be made available for any student who needs one to attend.

One point of extra credit will be awarded to all students who attend and complete this assignment for any one of the speakers. (Consult the Extra Credit webpage for more info.) Official attendance is taken by group photo at the end of the event. Place your completed (typed) assignment in my mailbox in the Research Room at any time during the school day on Thursday, November 12.

Craig B. Thompson Moderator

Memorial Sloan Kettering President Craig B. Thompson studies molecular signaling pathways that regulate nutrient uptake and the role these pathways play in the regulation of cell growth and survival.

Anna-Katerina Hadjantonakis, PhD, Developmental Biologist In the Beginning: What Embryos Teach Us about How Cells Decide What They Want to Be

Developmental biologist Anna-Katerina Hadjantonakis studies pluripotency, cell lineage commitment, tissue patterning, and morphogenesis in the early mammalian embryo.

Cole Haynes, PhD, Cell Biology Program Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Its Consequences: From Aging to Cancer

Cell biologist Cole Haynes focuses on the molecular mechanisms of mitochondrial function during development, aging, and cancer cell growth.

Joao Xavier, PhD, Computational Biology Program Ecology of the Microbiome: What the Gut Microbiota Reveals about Human Illness

Computational biologist Joao Xavier studies computer models and quantitative experiments of biofilm and cancer growth.

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