Friday, July 20, 2012

The Franklin Institute

Today we took a field trip to the Franklin Institute. It was great to see all of the different exhibits there, and it was also very nice to have a field trip with a less busy schedule.

Alysa bikes herself across the atrium
I was expecting something along the lines of the Lawrence Hall of Science, but once we arrived I was surprised to find hordes of small children running around making tons of noise. They were all pretty cute, but they did make it a little difficult to see the exhibits. There was a really cool exhibit about health and the human body, featuring an enormous human heart walk-through. As you might expect, the Franklin Institute had a lot of trivia about Benjamin Franklin. There was a display in the atrium that commemorated his commitment to science and showed how his thoughts and advice were still relevant today.

Our first stop was the Foucault Pendulum, which demonstrates the Earth's movement
My favorite exhibit was Sir Isaac’s Loft, an exhibit that combined science and art. Bill had recommended it to all of us, so Clara, Alysa, Jessica, and I spent most of the morning trying to figure out where in the museum it was.  We finally found it after lunch on the third floor. My favorite part of the exhibit was the display where I sat in a chair and pulled myself up using a rope and pulley system. The whole museum experience was great, because we got to see a history of science technology that isn’t often on display. One of the more interesting displays was a simple set of data on temperatures in Philadelphia for the past 100 years. What made it special was that the museum didn’t interpret it for you; they put the data on display and let you draw your own conclusions.

Clara pulls herself off of the ground
Tonight was the night that we’d all been anticipating for the past two weeks–the showing of “The Dark Knight Rises.” Christine, my roommate, has been talking about this for the past few days and we were both so excited that we ran to the movie theater in an attempt to make sure we got good seats. The movie was amazing, and it was so popular with the Summer Discovery students that Ed rented a whole theater just for us, which was probably a courtesy to anyone else that would otherwise have been stuck watching with 200 screaming high-school students.

It’s hard to believe that this is my last weekend here, since it seems like only last week we were touring U of Chicago, meeting our roommates for the first time, having our first day of class. However, we’re scheduled to see the Giants vs. Phillies game on Saturday and there’s a trip to Ocean City on Sunday, so I know that it will be a great last weekend.

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