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For young explorers: NM Museum of Natural History & Science offers educational camps for kids

Children participate in an activity during a Young Explorers Camp at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science. (Courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science)

Make new friends while learning about the natural history of New Mexico and beyond during Young Explorers Winter Camp 2019.

The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science is offering a variety of camps for children ages 5 to 12 from Saturday, Dec. 21, through Jan. 3. Each camp will focus on a different curriculum. The camps start with “Our Best Friend, the Bisti Beast” on Saturday, Dec. 21.

” ‘Our Best Friend, the Bisti Beast’ which will focus on the Bisti Beast that was found in the Four Corners area, and it is related to our new dinosaur which is a Bisti Beast,” said Kelly White, educator and junior docent coordinator for the museum. “Our new dinosaur actually does move. Every half-hour she wakes up and she roars and she moves every half-hour, and during that time when she is in sleep mode, she will wink a little and she will twitch every once and a while just to catch people’s attention.”

“Dino Detectives” on Thursday, Dec. 26, and “Ice Age Investigators” on Dec. 27 are next in the lineup.

” ‘Dino Detectives’ is always a really popular camp,” White said. “It goes into what are dinosaurs versus non-dinos. ‘Ice Ace Investigators’ deals with our most recent time era where actually humans are involved and humans are present and we have the mammoths and the mastodons and saber-toothed cats. All of our camps will spend time out in the exhibit galleries and engage with the exhibits. And they’re all hands-on, age-appropriate and so much fun.”

“Awesome Astronomy” on Dec. 28 focuses on the Milky Way galaxy.

“A lot of people forget that we have a whole space science wing and we actually have some planetary geologists on staff and astronomers on staff, and so that’s actually another fun one where we get to engage in the space sciences wing learning about the objects and what makes a star a star, what are galaxies. Those kids will enjoy a planetarium show, as well.”

“STEM-ineers,” on Dec. 30, is more technology and engineering focused with a math aspect sprinkled in.

It will look into the science behind flashlights and sunlight. “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” on Jan. 2, is tied into the theme of a coming exhibit at the museum called “Reclaimed Creations by Sayaka Ganz.

The camps conclude with “Volcano Explorers” on Jan. 3. The curriculum is focused on New Mexico volcanoes but will delve into the recent volcanic eruption in New Zealand.

Parents can register their children for full-day or half-day camps by visiting the museum’s website. Parents who are unable to afford camp fees can contact camp coordinator Sioux Rivera regarding financial assistance by calling 258-8641 or emailing Sioux_Rivera@hotmail.com.

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