Los Alamos National Laboratory

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Reading and math programs benefit students and teachers.
October 3, 2016
The summer reading program celebration event held recently at the Bradbury Science Museum.

Marc Jacob Martinez, of Aspen Elementary School, stands with Carole Rutten of the Lab's Community Partnerships Office at the summer reading program celebration at the Bradbury Science Museum.


  • Director, Community Partnerships Office
  • Kathy Keith
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Several participants reported that the Pathway to Math Excellence was transformative; others claimed it was “the best professional development” they had ever received.

Summer reading program participants honored at Bradbury

More than 35 elementary students in grades K–6 from Los Alamos, Pojoaque, Rio Arriba, and Santa Fe counties (including tribal schools) participated in the Rudolfo Anaya Summer Reading Program, which ended on August 1 and was sponsored by Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Christopher Montalvo Memorial, and endorsed by Anaya himself.

Students kept records of books read and received recognition for participating at a celebratory event at the Bradbury Science Museum in September. Lennox Chung of McCurdy School in Española was the top reader with 187 books read. All participants received a certificate, book, and goodie bag.

Anaya, author of Bless Me, Ultima and other pioneering stories of the American Southwest, was awarded the National Humanities Medal during a White House ceremony on September 22.


Summer Reading Program participants celebrated with cake at the Bradbury Science Museum.

Partnership trains and supports math coaches in New Mexico 

Los Alamos National Laboratory Math and Science Academy (MSA), the New Mexico Public Education Department Math and Science Bureau (PED-MSB), and New Mexico State University Mathematically Connected Communities (MC2) are collaborating on a statewide STEM coaching pilot project known as Pathway to Math Excellence (PME).

The overall purpose of PME is to support school districts in creating a robust coaching program built on collaboration and continuous improvement. MSA’s work focuses on enhancing the content-knowledge, instructional skills, and coaching skills of kindergarten to eighth-grade math coaches from public schools in the Bloomfield and Pecos districts. The partnership aims to enable K–12 math teachers to help students improve their mathematical thinking, learning, and achievement.

To begin this collaborative project, a one-week professional development/coaching institute was held in August for the participating math coaches and their principals. The goal was to provide best practices for coaching and supporting teachers. Several participants reported that the institute was transformative; others claimed it was “the best professional development” they had ever received.

During the school year, MSA will engage in monthly, onsite visits to support the coaches and principals and to further the development of the coaching program at participating schools. MSA will also conduct two, two-day workshops during the school year for coaches, providing further professional development and support in instructional coaching. Additionally, the coaches will receive math content training by participating in MSA’s six, monthly Ir-Rational Number Institutes as well as two, one-day workshops provided by MC2. The workshops by MC2 will also be available to teachers in the participating and neighboring districts.


The Math and Science Academy positively influences mathematics education in New Mexico. This is consistent with MSA’s stated goals of increasing the level of teachers’ content-knowledge for mathematics and improving student learning.