Polo Park Middle School’s sixth annual Science Night, one of the school’s biggest events of the year, attracted more than 1,000 students and parents from all across Wellington. From cockroaches to liquid nitrogen, it housed tons of activities and science exhibits.
The event was run by Shaun Stabler, a sixth-grade science teacher at Polo Park.
“We started planning back in April,” he said. “It starts getting really high gear in August, and then afterward, it’s just crazy.”
Students flocked to the long lines forming near food trucks outside of the entrance to grab a bite before exploring the media center, gym and cafeteria. “The food was really good,” student Edward Guess said.
When students entered Polo Park, they were greeted by friendly staff members and handed passports. As they visited each station, a volunteer punched a hole into their passport. When the night was over, students could turn in their passports to their teachers for extra credit.
The courtyard was filled with music, provided by radio station Wild 95.5, one of the sponsors of the event. Their booth was placed on the stage in the middle of the courtyard along with a basketball hoop. Behind it was the media center, which held the yearly Scholastic Book Fair.
The gym featured more than 20 tables with hands-on science activities. Guests got their hands dirty with worms and insects, watched liquid nitrogen inflate balloons, listened to their heartbeats and smelled scented wax to put their senses to the test.
Volunteers from the Polo Park National Junior Honor Society, cheerleading team, and robotics club ran the tables, guiding visitors through puzzles and demos. “I had a lot of fun volunteering,” NJHS Member Alex Theodore said.
More than 1,000 science fair projects were visible all around the school for visitors to see, though mainly housed in the cafeteria.
Stabler explained the goal of Science Night, which was to inspire students to become passionate about science and explore opportunities available to them through an event like this.
“Our goal is to get every student interested in science, and now that we have every student doing the science fair, they are all, hopefully, doing their own original ideas, and they are able to see theirs and every other friend and student at Polo Park doing original science and getting their hands into other science that we don’t get to do in school,” he said.
Overall, the night was a huge success. Families left with smiles on their faces, looking forward to next year’s Science Night.
Written by students Nina Moubarak and Jordan White