Museum Visits in Costa Rica
The Jade Museum
Our group took a trip down to the Jade Museum in San Jose, Costa Rica. This interesting museum exhibits the production of Jade tools and artwork made in pre-columbian Costa Rica.
The first hall, called the “Threshold,” shows the environment in which the jade producing societies lived and developed. It shows pictures and videos of the natives’ lifestyles including how they cooked and hunted.
The next level, called “The Jade” details how jade is processed. It also deals with the origins of jade and why it played such an important role in this society. You can also view the process of jade working and its importance in religious ceremonies and everyday life.
The next level was called “The Day.” This floor was focused on all aspects of daily life preformed by the Central American people. The floor sheds light on the main activities preformed by the people including hunting and agricultural methods. It also accounts the people’s relationship with their environment and the animals in it. Their reverence for the environment and its animals can be seen in their jade sculptures, and ceramics as animals are often incorporated in them.
The Children’s Museum
The Children’s Museum is located near San Jose, Costa Rica. The purpose of the Children´s Museum is to help kids learn about subjects ranging from science, nature, and the culture of their country. The museum featured varying exhibits designed to help inform them about each of the varying subjects.
One section of the museum featured the different types of homes that had been built and utilized throughout the inhabitation of Costa Rica. This area of the museum held all kinds of cultural significance in both the layout of the houses as well as with the objects of that resided in this area of the museum.
One of the most interesting exhibits in the museum dealt with electricity and electrical currents. This exhibit featured a multitude of interactive activities, from magnets to generating electrical currents. This exhibit was arguably the favorite exhibit of the group. The most interesting and entertaining part of the exhibit was broken circuit that you had to complete with your own body, allowing for a chain of people to connect the circuit. Another part of the room was a conductor which you got to turn on and watch a bolt of electricity go up the metal rods.
In another exhibit, the ‘house of illusions,’ every room in the house was an illusion. The floor was tilted to an extreme degree and all of the objects were tilted in a way so that it would look as if they were flat, even though they weren’t! One of the rooms had a pool table that look as if it was flat, or even tilted the opposite direction of the floor. A ball was placed on the table and it appeared as if the ball was rolling up the table. – Kyle Hunter and David DeGeare
– The above post was contributed by students who are currently studying abroad in Heredia, Costa Rica with ISA High School. In Costa Rica, students have the option of either participating on an academic program or a volunteer program (or combining the two).