PBA Science Days Camp Engages Budding Scientists

Whether inside or out, PBA Science Days counselors help youngsters learn about science and enjoy the experience. (Left) Youngsters perform a "slime-making experiment" after inspecting a fire truck; (right) a camper shows a counselor the "fossil" he found during a dig in PBA's sand volleyball court.

More than 80 elementary and middle school students from Palm Beach County are learning about science in a fun and exciting way by participating in Palm Beach Atlantic University’s Science Days camp. In partnership with Staples Foundation, the charitable arm of Staples, Inc., the university hosted students on its main campus and gave them opportunities to enjoy hands-on activities, guided by science-savvy camp counselors and PBA science professors.

Each day of camp centered on a specific theme, including rocks, minerals and fossils; the body, nutrition and exercise; the environment; animals; and genetics and forensics.

“We are thrilled to serve so many children in our community! It is exhilarating to see children having so much fun with science,” said Dr. Mireille Aleman, assistant professor of chemistry and director of Science Days at PBA.

Enjoy a video look at the 2013 Science Days camp

The first day of camp featured an excavation site, where students were able to dig in the sand for gemstones, fossils, and shark teeth. Students then explored their discoveries where they drew, measured and compared their findings using a scientific identification worksheet.

"Camp is really fun, I found a bunch of shark teeth in the fossil dig," said Emilia Wormus, 10, a student at South Olive Elementary. Paul Hanson, also 10 and a student at South Olive Elementary, said “The time flew by and the counselors made the day great.”

Campers were visited by the West Palm Beach Fire Department Engine Unit where students learned about how to be healthy and safe in case of emergency. Students also made their own slime, learning how mucus traps germs.

A.J. Crowetz, 16, Forest Hill Community High School student, is a former PBA Science Days middle school camper volunteering as a junior camp counselor this week. “It’s great to be back at camp and help the younger kids get excited about science,” he said.

About Staples Community and Giving

Staples contributes to educational and youth-oriented community efforts, from literacy and mentoring to career skills development, through in-kind and monetary donations and grants from Staples Foundation, the private charitable arm of Staples, Inc. Through its community and giving efforts, Staples and Staples Foundation have helped more than 6,000 organizations in 2,000 communities across 27 countries. Community and giving also are integral components of Staples Soul, which recognizes the connection between long-term business success and the impact Staples has on associates, communities and the planet.

PBA Science Days campers study the results of a watermelon being dropped from an upper floor of a parking garage. Dr. Fred Browning, a physics professor at PBA, led the exercise which explored kinetic energy, potential energy and gravity.