The Home of Midwood Science Research

Volunteer for the 2016 World Science Festival

Posted on Thursday, April 28, 2016 by for Extra Credit.

The World Science Festival needs volunteers. The Festival starts Wednesday, June 1 and ends Sunday, June 5. With hundreds of jobs in 30 venues across New York City, you’re sure to find a time, place, and position that suits you. (Seniors, be advised that Friday, June 3 is Prom night.) Submit your volunteer application today. Volunteers need…

  • an enthusiastic and friendly personality
  • to be comfortable working with people of all backgrounds, ages, and levels of familiarity with science
  • excellent communication skills (computer skills are a plus)
  • a background in science is an asset, but a passion for learning and sharing knowledge is key
  • dedication, commitment, reliability and professionalism
  • flexibility and a sense of humor

World Science Festival image mosaic

The World Science Festival gathers great minds in science and the arts to produce live and digital content that allows a broad general audience to engage with scientific discoveries. Through discussions, debates, theatrical works, interactive explorations, musical performances, intimate salons, and major outdoor experiences, the Festival takes science out of the laboratory and into the streets, parks, museums, galleries and premier performing arts venues of New York City and beyond.

Students needed for the 2016 Physics Bowl

Posted on Monday, February 29, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

Midwood will be administering the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) Physics Bowl sometime between March 30 and April 15. Participants in this competition take a 45 minute, 40 question multiple choice test written by the AAPT. This event is open to all students who are currently enrolled in an AP Physics class. Awards are given to the top students and the top schools in a geographic region. All research students who participate will receive extra credit. If you are interested in this event, contact Mr. Spergel through PupilPath or email He will give you information on how to register and how to take the practice exam online. The actual exam will be administered period 9 on a date to be determined.

Physics Bowl logo

5 Day DNA Science Camp

Posted on Sunday, February 28, 2016 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors, Sophomores.

Are you interested in molecular genetics and modern biotechnology? Do you wish you had more time in the lab at school? Do you want to learn more about DNA? Join fellow students for a 5 day DNA Science Camp at the Harlem DNA Lab during Spring Break. High School students in grades 9–12 who have successfully completed Living Environment are eligible to apply. This camp is FREE for NYC public school students.

DNA Science Camp provides extensive lab experience with the basic techniques of recombinant DNA, including DNA restriction and ligation, bacterial transformation and plasmid isolation. Participants perform the entire lab sequence from the popular DNA Science text and will receive their own copy of the text to keep.

Apply now to attend DNA Science Camp at the Harlem DNA Lab. Students selected to participate must attend all five days April 25–29, 2016. Lunch and a metro card will be provided. Space is limited. Online applications must be completed by Friday, March 11. All supporting documents (media release, parent consent form, and teacher letter of support) are due by Tuesday, March 15. Email questions to

NYC DOE STEM Matters logo Cold Spring Harbor logo

2016 Talking Science

Posted on Sunday, November 29, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Lectures.

Contact me immediately if you wish to attend this lecture AND are available. It runs from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM on the second Saturday in January. Space is limited and I must register early on Tuesday, December 1. Last year, we were only allowed 2 students because I waited until the end of the day to register. It filled up that quickly. Because demand is so high for this event, students who register and don’t show up (thus locking out other students) will have their grade lowered.

banner for Talking Science 2016
Save the Date

The Rockefeller University
invites your school to participate in

Talking science

Spend a day on campus at The Rockefeller University with preeminent biochemist and physician,Thomas P. Sakmar, M.D., to learn the science of drug discovery, and how new technology is transforming medicine.

Drug Discovery 101:
Precision Medicine for the 21st Century

Saturday, January 9, 2016 


The Rockefeller University
Caspary Auditorium
1230 York Avenue at East 66th Street
New York, NY 10065


Talking Science is intended for high school students only (preferably juniors and seniors) with a strong interest in science. Student attendance is limited to ten per school. Registration is required and will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. This event is provided at no cost to the school or students.

Registration opens on Tuesday, December 1, 2015. Information packets will be mailed to your school in advance of the registration open date.

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.

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.


2015 High School Physics Photo Contest

Posted on Tuesday, April 21, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors, Sophomores.

The High School Physics Photo Contest is looking for high school students who can explain physical principles through photography and writing. Photos may be entered in one of two categories and will be judged on the quality of the photo and the accuracy of the written explanation.

  • Natural photos are those that demonstrate physical concepts in everyday situations.
  • Contrived photos are those that are set up to show a particular physical concept or set of related concepts.
  • Photos with multiple images or other computer manipulation will be placed in a separate category.

I will be glad to give anyone advice on photographic composition or copy writing, but Dr. Riemersma will be supervising this competition for Midwood. The deadline for entries is Friday, May 15, 2015, but if you give Dr. R your photo for the first time on this day you will not be allowed to enter. There is a limit of 15 entries per school.

Please read the Student Rules before beginning. You may already have a photo in your archives that could be used for this competition. Look to the past winning entries for inspiration. This event is sponsored by the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).


New Horizons mission to Pluto event

Posted on Monday, April 20, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors, Sophomores.

On Thursday, May 14, 2015, the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) will host a program highlighting NASA’s New Horizons mission — the first-ever mission to the Pluto system and the Kuiper belt. This mission, which will have its closest approach to Pluto in July 2015, will help us understand ice worlds at the edge of our solar system by making the first reconnaissance of the planet Pluto and its moons, and by venturing deeper into the distant, mysterious Kuiper belt — a relic of solar system formation.

Students will have an opportunity to listen to AMNH’s Director of Astrovisualizations, Carter Emmart, New Horizons Deputy Project Scientist Cathy Olkin, New Horizons Co-Investigator Marc Buie and, Science Operations Team, Tiffany Finley present a dynamic and richly-illustrated overview of the mission and the men and women who make it possible, leaving time for interaction and one-on-one encounters.

This event is being coordinated by Mr. Spergel. He is taking everyone in his AP Physics 1 class, but he has room for a few more students. Contact Mr. Spergel directly if you are interested. This is a field trip, so paperwork needs to be done. The group will depart period 3 on Thursday, May 14, 2015. Extra credit will be awarded to research students who participate and complete the public lecture assignment for any one of the speakers.

Source: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

World Science Festival needs volunteers

Posted on Thursday, April 16, 2015 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

The World Science Festival is an unprecedented tribute to imagination, ingenuity and inventiveness, taking science out of the laboratory and into the streets, theatres, museums, and public halls of New York City, making the esoteric understandable and the familiar fascinating. The Festival returns this year when hundreds of thousands will gather for a glorious five-day celebration of science, Wednesday, May 27 to Sunday, May 30. The 2015 Festival will feature more than fifty engaging events of all types, including mainstage programs, intimate salons, and youth and family offerings. It all culminates in the Ultimate Science Street Fair, an outdoor extravaganza taking over the area around Washington Square Park and New York University.

Volunteers are the ambassadors of the World Science Festival, serving as the face of the Festival to visitors, welcoming them and being a resource of information about the Festival and its programs. World Science Festival Volunteers support the many production teams that make the wheels of the Festival turn. They are the core upon which the Festival’s success is based.

Volunteers must…

  • Be enthusiastic and have a friendly outgoing personality.
  • Be comfortable working with people of all backgrounds, ages, and levels of familiarity with science.
  • Have great communication skills.
  • Have a passion for learning and sharing knowledge.
  • Be dedicated, commited, reliable and professional.
  • Be flexible and have a sense of humor.

The World Science Festival is a 5 day celebration, but Midwood Science students can volunteer as many days as they want to — with one exception. Thursday, May 28 is the 2015 Midwood High School Science Fair. Since this mandatory event ends sometime between 5:00 and 6:00 PM, it doesn’t leave much time to help out at the Festival on that day.

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Midwood Science Research Program
Glenn Elert — Coordinator

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Michael McDonnell — Principal
2839 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11210
(718) 724–8500
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Mr. Elert (Coordinator) A214 elert@ 2141
Ms. Goldstein A317 goldstein@ 3172
Ms. Mosley A200 mosley.chem@ 2001
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Mr. Rosenfeld (Assistant Principal) A200 trosenf@ 2003