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Mendoza Museum of Natural Sciences.  Where resources gather to teach about

Mendoza Museum of Natural Sciences. Where resources gather to teach about

In 1905, the teacher and professor at the Cardinal López de Mendoza Institute, José López de Zuazo, decided to collect in the same place, attached to the Natural History Office of the High School, the collections and specimens scattered throughout the San Nicolás School. From then until today, a collection of hundreds of pieces has been collected in this space, ranging from large stuffed animals such as bears, wolves, otters or small seals, unimaginable today in a science study, models made with papier-mâché or with the first plastic From the beginning of the 20th century, some copies of the first Spanish expedition to the Pacific Ocean in 1862 and QR codes to access digital information or room scape for science learning among 21st century students.

The professor in charge of maintaining this interesting, semi-hermetic museum of natural sciences is Ana Mayoral. He devotes five hours a week, in addition to teaching, to reviewing pieces that have been damaged, and those that have changed with the advancement of science and identification of species, preserving a legacy that spans teaching from the late nineteenth century to the present. This age.

A corner dedicated to teaching is rarely open. He will do it this coming Saturday as part of “White Night”. “We try to bring all the resources of the center closer to the population and one of the ways to do this is to show the interior of the museum on a white night or to organize an exhibition, whenever we can, with some unique items such as those in Town centre”.

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The installation features pieces of unique animals, plant recreations, human organs, bacteria, shells, and geological formations. All the sciences are in an individual corner, which can be the quarters of the dean’s center and the choir, which overlooks the chapel. The maintenance work in the facility is enormous “We all put our hands together, the collaboration between the different departments is very important and allows everything to be organized like any science museum”, explains Ana Mayoral.

The walk begins with the geology of the province. In the museum there is a map of Burgos where all the areas are marked and the type of rocks that can be found there are marked. It’s not just visual. The work of arranging the complete collection of geological fragments and rocks made it possible to identify a specimen of each type of geological formation to be found in every corner of the province.

Lands where there are many references to fossilized footprints. The range of this type of material is very wide. There are vegetables, footprints on logs, trilobites…that will be part of next month’s piece exhibition “with which we are trying to bring museum content closer to all students.” Fossil fish are scattered around Anna Mayoral’s workbench. Enamels and inks to denote materials backwards and also space to restore or create new labels.

“We have the material ready to work on, I paint in white, then write the definition in black, and enamel again to set up the piece of the month,” he explains. It’s not the only maintenance work that added scientific monitoring work. “It is a museum that needs to be taken care of, renewed, and the classification reviewed, and I think I will retire and have not finished the pending work because there is a lot to catalog, materials are still being donated, and we are going to something urgent that needs immediate intervention so that it is not damaged.”

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Image dominates everything nowadays. Digitally, without printing. in web format, in the default class. Students can access an infinite encyclopedia like that created using the Internet. But at the beginning of the 20th century and the end of the 19th century, hyper-realistic models and primitive slides were the only way to bring science studies closer to high school students. The important group of bishops and their paintings stands out. four reserved. Also an old monocular microscope with microscopic tints, although much of the old lab moved to IES Diego Porcelos when the scientific study was set there.

Forms are one of the unique secrets of a high schooler. There are human organs and systems with amazing realism that are “authentic works of art” that could be seen in the San Juan Monastery last year. There are also many plants and baits of all kinds: viticulture, fruit trees, gardening, exotics… “I couldn’t imagine there were so many types of baits.” The agronomy studies at the Center also make it possible to display ancient agricultural tools or, for example, models in which plant tissues parasitized by fungi are faithfully collected “You can see how fungi enter cell types in each layer, they are amazing models that you see in 3D and that you You only see it in the book flat and that was the only way to teach,” Mayoral explains.

Among these models, some that came from Paris at the end of the nineteenth century, made of papier-mâché, stand out. “The current models we have in class are not good.” Others recreate a chicken egg with cuts to see embryonic development where all the layers and materials on paper are a “work of science art”.

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Also materials that would be impossible to use today, such as complex and colorful anatomy to see the various systems and organs of a squirrel, a pigeon, a frog … Stuffed animals, even fish, amphibians preserved in formaldehyde … ” are formulas of protection from the past that are not implemented today, but Since they are here, it is a heritage that we must preserve and also use as a form of environmental education. We show students the animals up close and work to raise awareness of nature conservation and positive attitudes towards the environment.” As nature and science in all their diversity are concentrated in this little gothic corner full of knowledge and history you can visit in the next edition of White Night.