Ecoliteracy – Video and Text Web Resources
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Video Resources

Can A Collapse of Civilization Be Avoided?

https://youtu.be/MtaGNQqUWo0

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Biologist Predicts how Civilization Collapses Soon.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cw0AAsGaDg0&feature=youtu.be

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For more wonder, rewild the world – George Monbiot

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rZzHkpyPkc

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David Orr at Schumaker College : Ecoliteracy and Ecological Education

https://youtu.be/jxge4AhxlcY

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Fritjof Capra, The Systems View of Life

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_MDRI-Q76o&list=PL943946701C4718FB

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Karen Brown – Revolutionizing K-12 Education with Sustainability in Mind | Bioneers

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2QE12j0qwV8

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Fritjof Capra outlines the lessons we can learn from Leonardo da Vinci’s scientific approach.

“In my view, what we need today is exactly the kind of science that Leonardo da Vinci outlined 500 years ago.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__c_M1HK7aw

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A Science for Sustainable Living – Fritjof Capra

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9P7HEn8vIH4

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Environmental Literacy and the Four Laws of Ecology

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rcbtcZzpV94

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Eco literacy class at the award winning Carmel Middle School

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpBmNwfjURs

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Urban/Suburban Ecoliteracy? Why now and who is teaching it?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IrNSXWQZzqY

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Ecoliteracy Among Students: Observations to Bring About a Brighter Future

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gwGzJEMt6I

 

CMS 6th grade Ecoliteracy students present: ECO TIPS !!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Z3yBYtJXG0

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Ecoliteracy Iliterate

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx0tIwfjCB0

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Ecoliteracy in our Schools

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQeq8NNqYtQ

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Successful Early Ecoliteracy Education

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xo3T7ZE6S3A

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Ecoliteracy and Conservation

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8YO2TKsNXU

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Why I live a zero waste life | Lauren Singer | TEDxTeen

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pF72px2R3Hg&list=PLn1n3TJY9SChHRoRynE3r69mvekW_sWtK

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David Sobel – Whole Person Education

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WFhvsDHqkD8

 

 

Web Page Resources

Here is the Internet resource list for the living systems blog essay .

Wikipedia Living Systems Theory

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Living_systems

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A Basic Written Description Of Living Systems Theory

http://www.isss.org/primer/asem14ep.html

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Waking Up In An Ecological Age – Molly Young Brown. An EXCELLENT summary of the history of modern systems/holistic thinking in ecology

http://mollyyoungbrown.com/essays-books-on-psychosynthesis-and-ecopsychology/essays/waking-up-ecological-age/

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Living Systems Theory  An excellent and easily readable summary of livings systems theory. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

https://www.earthcitizens.net/topics/living-systems-theory/

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Why natural networks are more stable than man-made networks

http://phys.

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Scientists review worldwide rise of “network of networks”. Further indications that there is a unity of interconnectedness in Nature.

http://phys.org/news/2014-12-scientists-worldwide-network-networks.html

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Uncovering complex network structures in Nature

http://phys.org/news/2014-12-uncovering-complex-network-nature.html

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BBC production: The Web of Life : Documentary on the Interconnection of All Living Things

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u33ovPBxGNo

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5 ways ‘systems thinking’ can jumpstart action

https://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2013/12/09/systems-thinking-climate-change-lessons-action

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Network thinking in ecology and evolution

http://www.johnboccio.com/courses/Physics120_2008/docs/proulx.pdf

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Earth’s Web of Life – A blog essay

http://www.freshvista.com/2016/our-web-of-life/

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The Web of Life:A New Understanding of Living Systems By Fritjof Capra. This is a good, short summary of his important book

http://primarygoals.com/teams/books/the-web-of-life/

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Biodiversity: The Web Of Life. A video

http://www.hrmvideo.com/catalog/biodiversity-the-web-of-life

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Celebrating The Beauty of Living Systems – Video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNXINb6hGJo

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The Unity of Living Systems

http://www.watchknowlearn.org/Video.aspx?VideoID=18103&CategoryID=4840

https://www.learner.org/vod/vod_window.html?pid=1364

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http://www.thinking.net/Systems_Thinking/OverviewSTarticle.pdf

An overview of systems thinking

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http://environment-ecology.com/general-systems-theory/379-systems-thinking.html

Systems Thinking has been defined as an approach to problem solving, by viewing “problems” as parts of an overall system, rather than reacting to specific part, outcomes or events and potentially contributing to further development of unintended consequences. Systems thinking is not one thing but a set of habits or practices

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http://learningforsustainability.net/systems-thinking/

From Learning For Sustainability

Standing in contrast to positivist and reductionist thinking, systems thinking sets out to view systems in a holistic manner. Consistent with systems philosophy, systems thinking concerns an understanding of a system by examining the linkages and interactions between the elements that comprise the whole of the system.

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http://projourno.org/2012/06/can-systems-thinking-actually-solve-sustainability-challenges-part-1-the-diagnosis/

Can Systems Thinking Actually Solve Sustainability Challenges?

Systems thinking is a trans-disciplinary “framework for seeing interrelationships rather than things, for seeing patterns of change rather than static snapshots” (Peter Senge). Therefore, a systems thinker frames a problem in terms of a pattern of behavior over time, instead of focusing on particular events. Instead of microscopic, they strive for macroscopic, seeing beyond the details to the context of relationships in which they are embedded. Today, it is used by academics and practitioners alike to address sustainability challenges.

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A Teachers’ Guidebook for Applying Systems Thinking to Environmental Education Curricula for Grades 9-12

http://www.fishwildlife.org/files/ConEd-Sustainable-Tomorrow-Systems-Thinking-Guidebook.pdf

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Food Security and Sustainability: Systems thinking and environmental sustainability

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsueubsgKUA

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Introduction To Systems Thinking: A slideshare presentation

http://www.slideshare.net/Think2Impact/module-1-introduction-to-systems-thinking

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Ecological Interactions. A nice written summary.

https://www.khanacademy.org/partner-content/cas-biodiversity/why-is-biodiversity-important-ca/biodiversity-and-ecosystem-funct/a/ecological-interactions

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A written summary of a very interesting lecture about food webs given by Jennifer Dunne at Santa Fe Institute. She portrays a hidden order in ecosystems using the studies of ecology and network theory.

http://bit.ly/1M1xPvg

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Chief Seattle’s Web of Life

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zm2qEOzMbG4&feature=youtu.be

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The Interconnected Web Of Life: We Are One

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mx4P4yu0mH0&feature=youtu.be

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Fritjof Capra, The Systems View of Life.    An outline of the new understanding of life that is now emerging at the forefront of science. It is a conception of life based on systemic thinking and some of the new concepts and mathematical techniques of complexity theory. It allows us for the first time to integrate the biological, cognitive, and social dimensions of life”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_MDRI-Q76o

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The Hidden Power Laws of Ecosystems

http://nautil.us/issue/29/scaling/the-hidden-power-laws-of-ecosystems

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A comprehensive description and review of the Gaia hypothesis

http://environment-ecology.com/gaia/70-gaia-hypothesis.html

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Gaia Theory Website

http://www.gaiatheory.org/

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Trees and plants communicate and interact with each other. Sophisticated, underground, fungal networks  connect the trees and plants of an ecosystem. This symbiosis enables the purposeful sharing of resources, consequently helping the whole system of trees and plants to flourish. Here are four resources on the subject.

http://www.ecology.com/2012/10/08/trees-communicate/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8SORM4dYG8#t=164

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDkR2HIlEbc#t=79

http://fantasticfungi.com/blog/

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Do Trees Communicate With Each Other? A very interesting video on how trees inter-communicate.

http://abject.ca/do-trees-communicate/

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What is an old-growth forest?

http://www.oregonwild.org/oregon_forests/old_growth_protection/what-is-an-old-growth-forest

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From the State of Minnesota. A nice web site on old-growth forests.

http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/forests_types/oldgrowth/description.html

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The Networked Beauty of Forests. A very interesting video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRSPy3ZwpBk&list=TLGluReTQZKDOzeBFU_Cck7kRVJJdqDP0f

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Biodiversity enhances ecosystem multifunctionality across trophic levels and habitats

http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150424/ncomms7936/full/ncomms7936.html

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My focus on connections in Nature includes evolution.

This web page is an exciting story about the discovery of an “anatomical mix between fish and a land-living animal.”

http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2014/04/neil-shubin-inquiring-minds-tiktaalik-creationist-nightmare

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Supporting native pollinators,.

http://runamukacres.com/2014/04/why-support-native-bees-on-your-farm/

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Feedback loops allow living organisms to maintain homeostasis

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CLv3SkF_Eag

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The predominance of quarter-power scaling in biology

https://www.sccs.swarthmore.edu/users/08/bblonder/phys120/docs/savage.pdf

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Scaling : The surprising mathematics of life and civilzation

https://medium.com/sfi-30-foundations-frontiers/scaling-the-surprising-mathematics-of-life-and-civilization-49ee18640a8#.j0ov9qwsl

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Self Organization In Biology

Self–organization is a process where some form of overall order or coordination arises out of the local interactions between smaller component parts of an initially disordered system. The process of self–organization can be spontaneous, is not necessarily controlled by any agent outside of the system, and is leaderless.

Self-organized structures rely on a continuous input of energy to be maintained.  Biological systems challenge us because they consume energy, and are therefore far from thermal equilibrium. Thus classical thermodynamics, which has been so successful in developing an atomic understanding of physical and chemical properties such as temperature and pressure, does not apply to these systems. Instead of self-assembling into a lowest energy state, such as a crystal, these energy-dissipating components self-organize into highly dynamic structures, through which there us a constant flux of energy and material.

https://www.mpg.de/967113/BM08SelfOrgbasetext.pdf

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The wikipedia definition of superorganism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superorganism

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A detailed explanation of how many life systems are organized and maintained without a leader

http://www.freshvista.com/2014/natures-self-organizing-patterns/

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Bird flocks, zebra stripes, honeybee swarms: Self-organization in biological systems. A brief slide show that summarizes the famous book by Scott Camazine

http://order.ph.utexas.edu/Camazine.pdf

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http://fuchs.uti.at/wp-content/uploads/selforganization.pdf

Lecture notes on self organization that offer great clarity

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Richard Golden; Characteristics of Self-Organizing Systems. A resource for teachers 1997.

http://sciphilos.info/docs_pages/docs_Golden_sos_css.html

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For Your Further Consideration

This essay is part of a series of essays that present ideas to environmental educators and all stewards of Nature about ecoliteracy and legacy.   These ideas come from some of our modern great thinkers. Typically, these essays will be paraphrased quotes from books and papers authored by these people along with Internet references. The emphasis will be on two key ideas:

  1. Our earth is a living system that transports and transforms energy. The key to an active ecoliteracy that results in a healthy environment for all life on earth is the building of a systems view of life into the minds and hearts of humanity, This worldview includes the fact that all of Nature is interconnected and interdependent.
  2. Environmental education is not simply offering facts. Environmental education must be hands-on and place-based if ideas, facts, and effective conservation strategies are to become a consciousness in the minds and hearts of our youth. Environmental education must include the the passing of this consciousness to future generations.

Here is a current list of essays about ecoliteracy. This list will expand with time.

Why Do I Write These Essays?

Nothing in Nature exists in isolation. The movement of life’s energy, which originates in the sun, takes place because everything is interconnected and interdependent. Your consciousness of interdependence in Nature means that, every time you engage Nature, you ask yourself how a creature, a plant, yourself,  or a natural object is connected to another and to Nature’s greater scheme of things. With this awareness you are prepared to protect Nature’s environment that sustains you. And, you create your legacy by encouraging others to do likewise.

If, after reading my essays, you find yourself embracing these ideas, I am thrilled in knowing that I’ve played some small part in setting this world view in motion in your mind.

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My name is Bill Graham. As a Marine Biologist who has worked in the US and Mexico for 30 years, I am a student of Nature, a teacher, a researcher, and a nature photographer. Through my work, I have acquired an ever growing passion for how everything in Nature is connected. Today, I travel extensively contemplating about, writing about, and photographing Nature’s connections. I also work with conservation projects in the USA and Mexico and mentor talented youth.

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