Living Stories about Living Systems
Connected Wisdom: Living Stories about Living Systems gathers twelve stories from different cultures that each reveal a unique example of a "living system." Through them, author Linda Booth Sweeney shows that what we now call systems thinking has been around for a very long time. A Balinese folktale tells the story of a gecko who cannot sleep because of the sparks from a firefly. He traces the cause of his complaint from one animal to another, and finally to the mosquitoes who he depends on for his survival. Like this gecko, young readers will understand that all life is inter-related, and will be able to grasp the concept of the living system of "interdependence." In a Burmese folktale, a king spills a drop of honey on his windowsill, too little to bother cleaning up. Yet the drop draws a fly, which attracts a lizard, which is followed by a cat, then a dog, and the owners of the cat and the dog, each armed with a stick. When civil war erupts, the king and readers understand the living system of "linearity," in which an effect is disproportionate to its cause. Clear and simple notes accompany these and the other stories in Connected Wisdom. Says Sweeney, "If kids understand living systems, they're more likely to think and act in informed ways and less likely to blame a single cause for the challenges they encounter. As kids appreciate and learn about living systems, they see that connections in nature, people, problems, and events bind us all." Connected Wisdom is available in a large-format, full-color volume, suitable for gift-giving, classrooms, and libraries. It is also available in an audio format and eBook format. Visit www.PlanetSEED.com/CW for more information. Connected Wisdom won honorable mention in its category at the New York Book Festival in 2011. It also won best audio book in the Green Book Festival and the New York Book Festival in 2011.
- SEED (Schlumberger Excellence in Educational Development), July 2011
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