The Good Life Nature Activity at Florida Museum of Natural History By: Caridad Dominguez

Nature on Display

Wicked Plants: The Exhibit piqued my curiousity by showcasing the dangerous flora and fauna of the world. It was interesting to learn about the defense mechanisms these amphibians and plants display. They protect themselves by harming others, a metaphor for many people of this earth. Moving around the exhibit, it was dimly lit and presented a sense of eeriness which captured my attention immediately. It was reminiscent of an old antique shop which added an air of mystery. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at the museum and this exhibit in particular because it taught me about how defensive the natural world can be. It opened my eyes to how this is reflective of humankind; we defend ourselves from those deemed "outsiders", sometimes through harmful means.
Nature and Ethics
Exploring the museum aided in expanding my appreciation for the natural world. Learning about conservation efforts that can be used at home demonstrated that a little goes a long way. For example, buying fresh produce locally not only helps a person stay healthy, but leaves a much smaller carbon footprint in the world than purchasing from a supermarket. Something as simple as turning off the faucet while brushing your teeth saves water and reduces waste. My museum experience opened my eyes to the ethical responsibility I have for nature and I felt a sense of guilt from the ignorance I held before about the importance of the environment. We should not be imperialists of land, instead strive to protect nature. Leopold's message to become a biotic community is iterated throughout the museum and the exhibits contain hands-on simulations to help visitors better understand each person's role in preserving nature. As I traversed the museum, I thought of how much destruction humanity has already completed, especially in the Florida Fossils exhibit which displayed various extinct species. I felt as though other visitors also came to this realization and collectively, each person was attempting to educate themselves on how to better treat Mother Earth.
Nature and the Human Spirit

By immersing oneself in a 3-D model of a world virtually untouched by humans, the Florida Natural History museum provides an opportunity to learn about the importance of conservation. Visitors are taught about how vital nature is to humans. Ordinarily, people believe in the idea of humans versus nature, but through the information provided at each exhibit, one realizes how crucial this landscape is for growth. The creatures that inhabit this world are not against humanity, instead it is vital that we protect each one, especially when we are the ones who cause their downfall. The Florida Natural History Museum educates each person on the respect we should have for nature and the significance of the consequences for abusing the natural world.

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