NMNSH’s Gift to Homeschoolers


The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History “is the only Smithsonian Affiliate Museum in the city of Albuquerque.” Chartered by Congress in 1991, it is “the official Atomic Museum of the United States.”

The NMNSH is a cool place to visit, but it deserves special commendation for offering programs “specifically for homeschool students ages 5-15 … bi-weekly in September and then monthly throughout the school year.”

KRQE’s morning show recently interviewed the museum’s David Gibson, who demonstrated a “Science Is Everywhere” experiment.

Let’s hope that many homeschooling families take advantage of the museum’s programs. How many students are homeschooled in New Mexico? No one know for sure, but the Coalition for Responsible Home Education estimates between 11,210 and 14,947 — meaning taxpayers, by avoiding the cost of government schooling, are getting a break equal to as much as $150 million.

But more importantly, as Brian D. Ray of the National Home Education Research Institute notes, homeschooled students “score 15 to 30 percentile points above public-school students on standardized academic achievement tests,” perform “well, typically above average, on measures of social, emotional, and psychological development,” and “are commonly involved in activities such as field trips, scouting, 4-H, political drives, church ministry, sports teams, and community volunteer work.”

A key component of the education-freedom movement, homeschooling has much to offer, both in New Mexico and throughout the nation. Kudos to the NMNSH for recognizing, and lending a hand to, the state’s homeschooling community.

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4 Replies to “NMNSH’s Gift to Homeschoolers”

  1. Brian D. Ray should correct his above statement to read “–some– homeschooled students ‘score 15 to 30 percentile points above…'” My wife and I have encountered many “homeschooled” students returning to public schools who were functioning far below their age – appropriate grade level.

    Many parents and members of the public have no concept of how much preparation it takes to teach. I taught seventh grade science five periods everyday and even after several years, still spent hours preparing to teach one class. Imagine the preparation required to teach six subjects every day for the entire 180 days of school. Now imagine a homeschooling parent doing that same amount of preparation for all of her children each one at a different grade level.

    If someone could do that, more power to them, but it is certainly far more difficult and time-consuming than some would think.

    1. You seem to be under the impression that homeschool is “school at home.”

      Most people homeschool in order to give their children every advantage. Therefore, homeschoolers don’t structure their days to resemble school.

      If I wanted my children to have a replica of what a day at school would be, I would send them to school.

      Homeschool is better, in nearly every circumstance.

    2. Ken, I have not home-schooled my children, nor has my wife, but I believe that there are two ways in which home schooling parents deal with the challenges you cite.
      1) Families can cooperate to allow some degree of specializing by parent-teachers.
      2) There is so much technology and it is so accessible that it really makes things much easier than they were a few years ago.

  2. It would be good if this read release could include some of the topics for programs offered for homeschoolers, or where to find that information.

    The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History is a wonderful place.

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