This is the VOA Special English Education Report.

    Outdoors, in the open air, seems like a natural place to study natural science. It also makes sense in a place like Southern California where people like to be outside a lot. Now the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is working to bring the indoors to the outdoors for its visitors.

    The museum has redesigned an outdoor space into a living exhibit. This is a big change for the one and a half hectare area. It used to include a parking lot. Now, instead of cars, it welcomes birds, butterflies and other living things.

    EVA ENG: "What else do the plants need, Jaime?"

    CHILDREN: "Sunshine!"

    Teacher Eva Eng and her young students recently visited the museum's outdoor campus. Ms. Eng says they enjoyed their experience. The children were learning about plant science in school.
    伊娃·英(EVA ENG)老师和她的小学生们最近参观了这家博物馆的户外园区。英女士说他们的这次经历非常愉快。孩子们在学校里正学植物科学。

    EVA ENG: "They really like hands-on things, getting their hands in the mud, and planting seeds, watering them, watching them grow."

    Scientists who work at the museum come outside to describe plants and insects in the natural setting of this outdoor laboratory.

    Greg Pauly specializes in studying turtles, like the western pond turtle. He tells the students how development has changed its natural habitat. He says these turtles are happiest around small bodies of water that grow and shrink with the seasons.
    格雷格·保利(Greg Pauly)专门研究海龟,像斑石龟(western pond turtle)。他告诉学生们人类发展如何改变了它们的自然栖息地。他说,这些海龟最喜欢围绕随季节变化规模扩大或缩小的小水体。

    GREG PAULY: "You know, one hundred fifty years ago, before there were very many people here, all the streams were just seasonal streams. And the western pond turtle loved that habitat. And with people, we have changed the habitat."

    Today, he says, there is a lot more permanent water, like a pond at the Natural History Museum itself. And he says the changing habitat is one reason why western pond turtles are shrinking in number.

    In addition to science lessons, the open-air exhibit can provide contact with nature in a way that some city children rarely get.

    Landscape architect Mia Lehrer says children can get real-life answers to questions they may be wondering about.
    景观建筑师米亚·莱勒(Mia Lehrer)说,孩子们能够获得他们可能想知道的问题的答案。

    MIA LEHRER: "What does it mean to see what strawberry plants look like, that they do not come from a container in the store? And a tomato -- children have been asked, 'Where does ketchup come from?' They do not know."

    Only parts of the new outdoor campus are open now. But Karen Wise says more changes are coming. Ms. Wise is the museum's vice president for education and exhibits.
    目前这个新的户外园区只有部分区域开放。但卡伦·怀斯(Karen Wise)说未来会有更多变化。怀斯女士是博物馆负责教育和展览的副馆长。

    KAREN WISE: "Now we are opening up the whole museum, making it an indoor-outdoor experience, so that our visitors can be a part of the experience."

    The work is expected to be completed by June of twenty-thirteen. Next year is the museum's one hundredth anniversary.