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A museum that used to be an old prison

On Thursday we went to San Jose to visit the National Museum. At the entrance there was a butterfly garden with many species of butterflies. The museum building is an old prison turned into a museum. We first toured different jail cells and saw the spaces where prisoners were kept. There was still writing on the walls that various prisoners wrote while they were in the cell. There were many artifacts from different periods of ancient Costa Rican civilization. There was ancient furniture, pottery, jewelry, and burial artifacts. After that we listened and saw many types of music and dances from around Latin America. In the garden outside the museum there were old stones that were lined up in the shape of constellations. The indigenous people used them for astronomy and agriculture. This museum introduced us to all aspects of Costa Rican culture.

On Wednesday, June 25, we went to the Children’s Museum in San Jose. This is a center of education designed to teach children while keeping them entertained. There are a total of forty rooms in the museum, each dedicated to a different area of exploration. The entire museum was interactive, including dress-up stations, musical instruments, and games. One example is a moving platform designed to emulate the motion caused by an earthquake. This helps kids to experience something that they are learning about. Many of the ISA students’ favorite attraction was the “Illusion House,” a series of special rooms filled with optical and physical illusions. Today we learned more about various subjects such as Costa Rican culture, astronomy, medicine, ancient lifestyle, music, and the Earth.

-The above post was contributed by Cailyn Wolberg, who is studying abroad in Heredia, Costa Rica.

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