School Programs

Ecology Field Program

The main program of the SMNHC, the Ecology Field Program, reaches over 12,000 students each year.

Using the outdoors, this program teaches students about the interconnectedness of the biotic and abiotic parts of an ecosystem with a hands-on scientific approach.

The program consists of:
• 1/2-hour Ecosystem Introduction/Review
• 2-3 hour Nature Hike
• 1/2 hour Lunch Break
• Time permitting, an additional Hands-On Activity

The program is designed for 5th graders. We serve all APS fifth-grade students, as well as students from surrounding school districts.  

Students are introduced to the local ecosystem, and producers, consumers, and decomposers that reside here, through a day of field exploration, observation, and hands-on learning in the outdoors. The program is free of charge, however you will be responsible for your students' transportation to the center. All lessons and activities are aligned with the New Mexico State Science Standards, Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core State Standards. 

To schedule an ecology field program...

APS teachers contact:

Liz Segura

(505) 281-5259

Non-APS teachers contact:

Chris Modelski

(505) 281-5259

Traveling Ecology Field Program

For schools outside the Albuquerque area, we offer the Traveling Ecology Field Program statewide.  In this exciting program, the staff of the SMNHC will meet your students at a “wild” area near your school and will lead students on a nature hike, interpreting the natural surroundings to explain how all the parts of an ecosystem are connected. 

Outdoor teaching areas require hiking trails, restroom facilities, school bus access, and a parking area. Areas that have been used for the TEFP include State Parks, National Park Service sites, National Forest campgrounds and picnic areas, BLM land, and natural areas within walking distance of the school.

To schedule,

Chris Modelski

(505) 281-5259

Animal Investigations Pilot Program

New as of winter 2015-'16 for 2nd, 3rd, and 4th graders in the Albuquerque area. Our instructors present a 1-hour lesson in your classroom about local animals. Students visit hands-on stations with animal "evidence" (skulls, tracks, fur, scat) while writing their observations in a journal. 

Program includes discussion of topics such as biodiversity, habitat, and adaptations depending on the grade level. 

To inquire for next winter ('16-'17), contact:

Fiana Shapiro

(505) 281-5259

New Mexico counties served in 2015-16 school year: