March | 2023
Spring is Around the Corner
It is that time of year again when the National Law Enforcement Museum welcomes thousands of students from around the world to experience our one-of-a-kind museum in the heart of Washington D.C. As one of the newest museums in our nation’s capital, we offer an exciting experience to learn about the rich stories of law enforcement officers and how the profession has evolved throughout its history. We achieve this by providing a combination of learning tools from a traditional museum setting where artifacts bring stories to life and through immersive and engaging interactive exhibitions and educational workshops. This combination of learning methodologies has appealed to educators and students who thrive in a hands-on learning environment and who seek a deeper understanding of public safety and the officers who have sworn to protect us.
Only two months into 2023 and we are thrilled to have registered students in grades 5-12 in addition to college-age students, local scout troops and law enforcement explorer programs from 13 states and two countries (Mexico and South Africa), to visit over the next six months. It is encouraging to see teachers and youth leaders introducing students of all ages to the role law enforcement plays within our communities and to demonstrate their support by encouraging them to open their minds to this critical work.
Our unique museum experience doesn’t just stop at our incredible exhibitions, but also in the opportunities students have to engage with law enforcement officers directly. Many of our adult visitors have the option of experiencing our Decision Making Simulator led by retired officers from a variety of departments and federal agencies but given the content and the handling of simulated firearms, the simulator is not available to visitors under 18 years of age. However, the team at the National Law Enforcement Museum has created an exciting curriculum that allows students of all ages to experience a modified version. Led by an experienced Law Enforcement educator, students are shown age-appropriate filmed scenarios depicting situations an officer may face on the job. The instructor presents the students with some background information on standard law enforcement training in the United States and give students a general understanding of the use of force policies the average American officer would be expected to follow. Students then use a series of color-coded paddles to illustrate the fundamentals of the use-of-force continuum as described by the instructor. When prompted, students assess the appropriate level of force necessary at specific points of a filmed law enforcement training scenario. In this way, students become active participants and can ask questions of our law enforcement educators which more often than not, reveal aspects of law enforcement not typically depicted in the media and popular primetime television series. We anticipate this experience will add even more value and memories for our student groups that will enhance their appreciation for the law enforcement community.
If you’re reading this and are one of our future visitors, or planning to be, think about that burning question you’ve always wanted to know about law enforcement and discover the answer at the National Law Enforcement Museum.
See you soon!
Executive Director, National Law Enforcement Museum
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund