(Share Your Favorite Memory Wall, photo taken by Taylor Gautreau)
Taking time to let the butterfly land on your head can be the difference between meeting some really fun kids trying to do the same thing and being that busy college kid who doesn't have time for anything. If this trip has taught me anything, it's always to leave time in your busy schedule for the butterfly.
Nature On Display
Personally, I have always enjoyed museums, even at a young age. Especially science oriented museums. Naturally, the part of the museum where there was a viewing area for spectators to view researchers conduct their work intrigued me most. Though it wasn't the most "natural", as nature was being disoriented, I believe it offered the most influential learning experience for people of all ages. I think often times there is a disconnect between what happens in a laboratory and what is portrayed on television, and children don't have an opportunity to see it happen in person. I also think it's important to recognize that it was younger students performing the experiments, not older people. This informs the children that becoming a scientist is a possibility for them as a career.
(Hallway of laboratory view spaces, photo taken by Taylor Gautreau)
Nature and Ethics
The butterfly exhibit was vivacious and joyful as there were butterflies everywhere, and it was a beautiful day outside. There were children running around throughout the exhibit equally as excited and conceded as I was when the butterflies landed on us. The frog exhibit on the other hand, was an entirely different story. Each and every last frog looked depressed and pained to be alive. They were all hiding in corners and crevices, and if they could express facial emotions, I would assume they were unamused. The children were unaware of the distress these species were in, some of the older kids caught on, and some of the parents whispered to each other wondering what was wrong with the animals. My question is to what extent is human research or preservation efforts detrimental to the species rather than beneficial.
(Charles and Harold, The Rare Depressed Bright Green Spotted Frogs, photo taken by Taylor Gautreau)
Nature and The Human Spirit
I'd like to think that the butterfly exhibit aided in my ability to step out of my everyday routine and not only appreciate what nature has to offer, but all that the natural world itself has to offer. Often times when we look for sources of entertainment, we go to our phones, the movies, or even amusement parks. When really, we should be looking to appreciate those around us and the things that preexist around us. We should take a day to go kayaking on the water or camping in the woods rather than shopping in a mall. Taking more time to become more familiar with ourselves and those who we value is so much more important than scrolling through a news feed.
(Charlotte and Monique The Majestic, Overly Friendly Species of Butterfly, Ft. Frighten Me, photo taken by Taylor Gautreau)