Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Empathy Makes the World Go Round

In the last few weeks before school started, I was reading the book UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World by Michele Borba, Ed.D. It certainly is an eye-opening book: as a parent, a teacher, and as a citizen in 2017. Especially when it seems a lot of the news these days politically seems to scream of a lack of empathy on one side or the other.

As I was reading this book (which I finished in approximately two days given how engaging and readable it was), I thought often of my own two, personal driving forces, the foundation of Green Team Gazette: environmentalism and technology.

I also thought a lot about my own children... as well as my own parenting style.

In multiple places in the book, the "selfie" side brought about by social media (and the narcissistic tendencies that have been on the rise over the past several decades), the solution points to unplugging. Getting outside. Getting dirty. Building emotional intelligence through actual interaction with others (not texting). Connecting.

My daughter showed me a spoofy YouTube not long ago comparing life in 2017 versus either 1997 or 1987. It really doesn't matter much for the parts that stuck in my head: the cell phones, the texting versus the hours I spent talking on the phone as a kid, the time running around outdoors not tied to a computer, meeting people in the world versus online dating. Yes, as they say: the times, they have changed.

Building our empathy skills--that is the key. The secret to flipping our selfie society.

The 9 factors that help build empathy are here:

Between our "plugged in" culture (kids spend approximately 7 hours and 38 minutes plugged in these days!?! Yikes!) and the "hurry, scurry, aren't we over-busy" mentality--not to mention the social media selfies, we are indeed in need of un-selfie-ing! The opposite: building empathy. Borba's UnSelfie does a great job of giving you both a lot of strategies both for yourself and your kids. It also gives you a lot of food for thought. It's leaving me pondering all of the above for days...thinking of the ways I can unplug myself, my kids, and help build all of our empathy skills!

"The Thoughts in My Head: Empathy" picture was created by me at;; "7 Ways to Cultivate Children's Empathy" poster created by me at; "UnSelfie" book image from; Brene Brown quote photo from

Saturday, August 26, 2017

An Inconvenient Sequel, Revisited

Ever since seeing "An Inconvenient Sequel," I keep revisiting movie points in my mind. (It helps that I have about 3 pages of written notes, front and back, that I took in the dark theater, trying to capture all the #eco information. I can indeed go back and physically revisit those movie points!)

Perhaps it is that the daily news (and noise) doesn't help.

After seeing the movie, I keep pondering where we are.
It's almost like I'm walking on an icy pond: are we at the "tipping point" or the "turning point?" (Two phrases used in the movie.) Or, are we still carefully stepping somewhere in the middle, hoping for the best? It's sort of like that "hope & despair" struggle, which climate change often has us precariously teetering on as well.

After watching the movie...

After seeing the data of "hottest year on record" for several years in a row now...

After seeing images of super storms, hurricanes (especially the damaging effect of Hurricane Harvey this weekend in Texas), "rain bombs," floods, and drought-induced wildfires...

After seeing images of climate refugees who are left with only destruction from these above-mention natural disasters...

After seeing the statistics, facts, and the science reports by experts in the field...

How. Are. We. Still. Here?

Burying your head in the sand like an ostrich doesn't change what's around you. Yet there are so many around us that are doing just that. As if the science is debatable or negotiable.

Insert *sigh* here.

Rather than debating that point though, it comes to the point that we all, as citizens, need to do our part. Al Gore ended "The Inconvenient Sequel" with the following quote, typeset and screen-filling at the end of the movie:
Fight like your world depends on it....Because your world depends on it.
Given that, here's an infographic I created to share a few places to start!

It is through taking action, in both little and big ways, that we can instill change. Cheers to those of you out there who are fighting along side me. May we all have the same resurgence of power that DSCOVR did.

Images from Buncee Windpower/Solutions poster from;"Inconvenient Sequel" Movie Poster from; ice pond image from; Climate graph from; top 10 hottest years graph from

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Al Gore's At It Again: The Inconvenient Sequel

On July 28th in selected theaters and August 4th for a wider selection of theaters, amidst a tumultuous and political 2017, the sequel to Al Gore's 2007 movie "An Inconvenient Truth" came out in movie theaters. It's been 10 years since the first movie came out, and we're still here, in need of this movie.

Here's the trailer for "An Inconvenient Sequel:"

I saw this movie last week. My first thought on the subject was that it was actually exciting to see an environmental movie out at the big, "real" theaters (not just a Netflix near you). Additionally, I was very happy to see that it was out for longer than a one-week release. I will say, there weren't many in my theater (as its been out a few weeks and it probably speaks to a very specific crowd), but the theater wasn't empty. It made me smile to sit there solo, but amidst a tribe of like-minded individuals.

Of course, it left behind a myriad of other thoughts:
  • I felt like this movie came at the right time. All Americans--all global citizens--should see this movie. It will say, it is striking given that some of the environmental policies are changing under the current administration and their admonishment of science and climate facts... especially striking after seeing the movie and the extent of which everyone should listening!
  • A poignant point: "To fix the environmental crisis, we need to fix the democratic crisis." I think we've seen a number of times in the last 4+ decades that the political stance of the presidential administration is what drives the money, the connections, the decision making. We saw it when President Reagan took off the White House Solar panels that President Carter put on. We saw it when President Bush canceled the DSCOVR (see below). We see it on our nightly news now, with Donald Trump & Scott Pruitt attacking the EPA.
  • I will admit: I  felt a mix of  both being down, yet also hopeful. I was saddened by the numerous roadblocks along the way (in both the Bush and now Trump administrations). I was struck by the story of NASA's DSCOVR [which stands for "Deep Space Climate Observatory"]. It was ready to get off the ground in 2000, around the Bush-Gore election. Due to dangling chads and a Supreme Court decision, George W. Bush took office, and DSCOVR was dismantled of all climate instruments--renamed, reprogrammed, and left only equipped with solar storm equipment to send into space. Watching the details and history on that was disheartening. But in the category of time, persistence, and "all good things come to those who wait," DSCOVR, under President Obama's administration, was finally fully equipped and successfully launched on February 11, 2015.
  • Once again... The people of the world who always have the biggest negative effects (given any issue) are the poorest. Climate change related issues are no different. From that stand point, climate change then becomes a social justice issue. Case and point: Syria had faced a huge drought from 2006--2009, right before their political issues. The drought, no doubt, did not help anyone's demeanor prior to the civil unrest! Just one example (of many out there) that there is a link between peace and climate change.
  • Solar, wind, and other renewable energies are doable, profitable, and bottom-line far more healthy than the fossil fuels we are using now.100% renewable energy cities are cropping up: Even Georgetown, Texas, a highly conservative community, was featured in the movie for their near 100% renewable energy goal. As Republican Mayor Dale Ross (who was proud to be the first in Texas to achieve this goal) said: "It's just common sense that cleaner air is healthier, and we're leaving the planet better." For a list of other cities striving for (& achieving)100%, go to Go 100% Renewable Energy's website.

I could go on and on.

I do think my biggest "ah ha" moment was the fact that I saw this film just days after the controversial racial rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, which led to the unnecessary death Heather Heyer. Near the end of the movie, Al Gore spoke of his concern (and sometimes dismay) over his mult-decade quest, and how it was disheartening at times. That was exactly how I had been feeling after Charlottesville. It broke my heart that there was still so much racism in our country, and it was so blatant. Yet, I also saw hope in the way people on both sides of the political spectrum were standing up against white supremacy. 

This especially hit me at the end of the movie as Al Gore went on to compare the climate fight to that of the Civil Rights movement and every other major moral movement to keep progressing human rights forward. All movements at times feel that heavy resistance and push back, battling the moral difference between right and wrong. Change and progress are not easy. Yet, it's also not dependent on a president. If ours refuses to lead environmentally, the it is up to the American people to lead. So whether it's in the form of a movie like this, or marches like the Climate or Earth Day or other marches we've seen in 2017 (or even a little blog like mine), we will lead.

And hopefully we will keep making breakthroughs which lead to greater and more sustainable change!

For more information about "The Inconvenient Sequel," check out the links below:

Links from the movie website to encourage you to "Use Your Choice; Use Your Voice; and Use Your Vote:"

Links from the Climate Reality Project related to the movie:
To look into getting training and work with Al Gore, to become a Climate Reality Leader, click here. Application deadline is September 12, 2017 for the October 17-19, 2017 training in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The image below shows how many climate leaders have been trained in the Climate Reality Leadership Corp since 2006.

Video from; Video Image created at
"Inconvenient Sequel" Movie Poster from; Climate Reality Leadership Corp pic from; movie image from and; Gandhi quote from

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Monday's The Day: The American Eclipse August 21, 2017

So... Monday's the day you've been hearing about for months on social media: The Great American Eclipse.
In case you missed it and need more information, you can check out my earlier post on "all things eclipse." Then you'll be ready for when the sky gets dark on Monday (as most of America will have get to witness at least a partial eclipse). Plus, you can rest assured it's not a dystopian version of Chicken Little & "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!"

I covered a lot of information last week about the eclipse, but I feel like I needed to do one last PSA on making sure you address the safety issues. An eclipse is a rare natural event, but truly it comes with its own dangers if not handled properly. That's what I get for being a teacher--I've got to dive into and go all "Safety Patrol" on you.
(There, I said it, loudly, yes, I'm screaming. Now go watch this movie.)

There are parameters when it is safer, as the movie showed, and for those I'm going to defer to NASA. The partial eclipse is said to have more intensity, which can lead to more damage. Eclipse glasses have been all the rage in the eclipse hype we've been hearing about all summer. Again, I defer to NASA. I know there's been comments to "make sure your eclipse glasses are safe and NASA approved or certified." I've also heard horror stories online about knock offs out there for the unsuspecting and trusting eclipse watcher.
I feel I can't say that loud enough.

And don't even think that your regular sunglasses offer any sort of protection. THEY DON'T! If you are wearing your regular sunglasses during the eclipse, behave as if you aren't. Because basically, you aren't in those circumstances. DON'T LOOK AT THE SUN! Sunglasses aren't anywhere the same as NASA approved solar glasses!!

I've also got to say this... I am paranoid. Fully. Totally. 100%. I don't trust them (and I don't typically have trust issues to this extreme). Even if they are 100% safe, glasses slip. Kids are careless. The timing might be off. Your eyes are too important. Yes, in this case I'm a complete worrywart to the "Nth" degree! And here's the reason why: I distinctly remember being in elementary school, ready to head out to see my very first eclipse. I also totally remember being warned within an inch of our lives by our teachers to NOT LOOK UP, as we stood outside, waiting our turn to view the partial eclipse through the pinhole box projector. Yes, it was the 1970s. Yes, it's archaic. Yes, technology has changed just a tad since then. But I don't care, I'm still paranoid and enmeshed in my safety zone.

Given all of that... I recommend going old school and making that pinhole projector (sometimes called an eclipse viewer).  Use the video below as your guide or make your own NASA-approved 2D or 3D printable one. Plus then it becomes an at home project to share with your family, not to mention it might even make you nostalgic.

OK... Now that I've gotten that all off my chest... here's a couple last minute "nuts and bolts:"
  • Timing: To find out when you can see it in your area, go to this Vox article, scroll down, and enter your zip code. It will give you the time of start, the peak & percentage of sun blockage to expect, and how it will scroll out via a time lapse animation. It can also tell you where the nearest place is from you to see the total eclipse. There's also other good info over there too. Cool stuff. 
  • Live feed: NASA is streaming live video online on Monday, August 21st. Coverage will be 12 noon to 4 pm Eastern Standard Time and will include live coverage at 12 locations via airplanes, 57 high altitude balloons, and ground telescopes. Bookmark this link ahead of time so you'll be on the ready watch, regardless of your device. For those of you in the bunch as paranoid as I am, this might be the perfect way to get an up close and personal view of the magic while it happens.
  • Final Thoughts:  Don't miss it. Take time out of your regular routine and check it out. These things don't come around every day. But whatever you do, remember to be a part of the Safety Patrol with me. Don't make any "blinding" mistakes... pun intended! Go out there and be safe Monday!

Images from; 2017 eclipse track pic from; eclipse timeline from; eclipse viewer video from; eclipse safety 101 video from

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Innovation, Visionaries, & The Henry Ford Museum.

After visiting the Winter Estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford in Fort Myers this June, I'm finding that I just can't get enough of them. Of course, upon doing doing some digging on their individual websites, I'm finding it's a little bit like like getting lost down the rabbit hole…there’s so much there, educationally speaking.

Especially when it comes to the concept of Innovation. 

The Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation in Dearborn, Michigan is now officially on my bucket list of places I want to go dive in! 

In the meantime, I'm just going to have to spend hours pouring over their online resources!

If you too are in search of resources innovation, visionaries, and more, look no further!

Where to start--
Your "Must See TV" Innovation Video
from the Henry Ford Museum
A perfect introductory is the curriculum video on the Henry Ford Museum "Teaching Innovation" page. There you will learn some of the traits of Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Buckminster Fuller, Rosa Park, and all innovators:

Revolutionary * driven * undaunted *
a dreamer * fierce * brave * & more

You see that they "questioned. Searched. Were unsuccessful. Succeeded magnificently."

You hear modern day visionaries speaking on the underlying traits of innovators, inventors, entrepreneurs, and change makers.  This video falls in the category (in my mind) of "Must See TV," and I'm thinking along the way as to how I can incorporate it at school!

Where to go next, getting lost along the way in the sea of excellent information--
  • The Curriculum Video above naturally leads you to the "Innovation 101" curriculum. Five 45-minute lessons plans are designed to introduce students to innovation principles. The following modules highlight the topics:
                    1. What is Innovation?
                    2. Traits of an Innovator
                    3. Process of Innovation
                    4. Keys to Innovation
                    5. Innovation, Intellectual Property Rights, & More
                    > Field Trips & Programs for the locals (man, to be local!)
                    > Educational Resources (searchable by topic)
                    > Education at the Henry Ford (including professional develop-
                             ment for educators, The Henry Ford Academy, &
                             Henry Ford Learning Institute 
                    > Competitions & Events
                    1.  What If?  
                            Investigate some of the questions inventors had
                               along the way.
                    2.  Choose 3
                            Find the connection between different combinations of 3
                              artifacts at the museum.
                    3. Visionaries on Innovation
                            Discover the "Personal Perspectives from Leading Innovators"
                              through videos, insights, and articles.
                            You can view by:
                                    > Trait: collaborate, break rules, learn from failure,
                                                  remix, be curious
                                    > Innovator: 25 modern visionaries
                                    > Topic:   agriculture, design & making, energy & power,
                                                 information & communication, social
                                                 transformation, transportation
  • The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation –a weekly Saturday morning CBS show hosted by CBS Sunday Morning Show's own Mo Rocca. The show, now with archives of 3 seasons, showcases present day change makers, solving the problems of today. This video shows a sneak of what's inside the series.

May these resources help you navigate those traits of innovation and inspire you to investigate the wealth of resources that are out there!

pics from and; video image from; video from; final quote from

Saturday, August 12, 2017

August 21, 2017: Total Eclipse of the Heart... Um, I Mean, Sun!

It's not on the line of "The British are coming, the British are coming..."
but it's close:

A solar eclipse is coming!
A solar eclipse is coming!
August 21st, 2017, 
to be exact!

Unless you have been living under a rock, this should not be new news. It's been all over social media and news networks for a good month!

Given the trajectory and the tilt of the Earth's axis, all of North America is in prime position to see the sights of this total solar eclipse. (For a bigger map, go here.)  Given that fact, it's come to be known as "The Great American Eclipse. The last time an eclipse trekked across the contiguous United States was June 8, 1918--just over 99 years ago!

Of course, you can't go "just watch" an eclipse. There are certain things you need to do to make sure you have created a safe situation for your eyes due to the intensity of the sun's rays during an eclipse. Here's a great infographic from Crofton Family Eye Center helping you know how to best approach this rare event.

The posters, created by artist, educator, & Astronomer Tyler Nordgren, follow the style of the Works Progress Administration of the mid-1900s. What striking advertisements for a great once-in-a-lifetime event! Visual reminders to help us all remember to mark our calendar for next week!!

Tyler Nordgren

Tyler Nordgren

Tyler Nordgren
Tyler Nordgren 
To do some more digging on the details of this total eclipse, check out, Vox & The Great American Eclipse (both of which they have detailed maps of the track). ISTE also has a list of 7 resources to teach about the solar eclipse. You can also be a citizen scientist through Eclipse MegaMovie 2017.

And then there's NASA:

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

The Winter Estate of the Dynamic Duo: Thomas Edison & Henry Ford

Vacation is such a great time to explore and discover new places. Our June Trip to Ft. Myers, Cape Coral, Sanibel, & Captiva allowed for just that. We got the visit several beautiful beaches & also got the chance to check out The  J. N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge, as well as the Thomas Edison & Henry Ford’s Winter Estate.

Although there were lots of highlights, one that really got my mental gears spinning was the Edison-Ford Winter Estate (with 250,000 visitors annually). It was here that I saw (again!) the marriage between technology and the environment (not to mention, a lot of amazing exhibits):

Innovation & Inspiration 

The friendship of these two men led them to wintering together as next door neighbors in Fort Myers. The turn-of-the-century was a time of technology and inventions. Being at the Edison-Ford estates transported me back those 100 years to that dynamic time of innovation. 

In addition to the genius that Thomas Edison and Henry Ford brought with them when they came to Florida, the grounds of the estates themselves became living laboratories. The 20 acres of botanical gardens became outdoor research--a place to investigate edible crops, and investigate chemistry and industry. Edison experimented with bamboo filament for his initial light bulb.

Now, of course, the estate and museum leave you awe-inspired by both the history and magnitude of both men's inventions that completely transformed the life and times of their era. It certainly serves as inspiration to the Maker Movement & STEAM/STEM education today!

It also spoke to me that 100 years ago, these visionaries saw signs of future promise that our leaders today are still challenged with when it comes to alternative energy!

The Environmental Escapades of "The Vagabonds" 

Being outdoors becomes a break from your current reality. That doesn't matter if it's in today's time, or 100 years ago.
During the decade of 1914--1924, Edison and Ford were joined by Harvey Firestone (creator of Henry Ford's tires) and best selling nature author John Burroughs annual expeditions "Into the Wild." Henry Ford saw his Model T as a way to transport not only this quartet to the wilderness, but as a way of bringing a love (and escape) to nature to the everyday man. The "Tin Can Tourist" was invented!

This video, by the same name (published by PBS in April 2011), highlights the time, the friendship of this foursome (who became known as "The Vagabonds," and how nature inspired and revived them. They were the celebrities of the time!

Educational Resources from the Winter Estates

One of my favorites is a book I got there: "The Inventor's Secret: What Thomas Edison Told Henry Ford" by Suzanne Slade. (Spoiler alert: The secret? Grit, perseverance, stick-to-it-ive-ness!)

The Winter Estates website takes you to some other great resources:

Within their “Our Collections” tab, you can request information, request a photo, find links for other Edison and Ford websites, books and DVD's. I was particularly interested in the link to the STEM Resources for Students & Teachers at website!

They also have an extensive Education Tab on the website with the following categories--many for locals: Edison Ford Home School programs, Emerging Inventors Early Learning Classes; Inventors Summer Camp; School Break Camps, and monthly Garden Tours.

Final Thoughts

Thomas Edison was not a stellar student when young. He did not function well in the regular classroom (possibly an attention deficit kid, prior to that being a diagnosis), only truly thriving when his mother took him out for homeschooling. Henry Ford was a teenage tinkerer who mastered the art of watch repair through his own exploration and investigation. For both, it was through perseverance and failing forward that they ultimately made their mark on history. And it makes perfect sense that these two geniuses of their time would gravitate toward each other.

For a great overview video of the Winter Estates, check out the video on their home page. It might just inspire a visit the next time you are down in the neighborhood of Ft. Myers! You might find yourself channeling these two great inventors, seeing your own mental gears start spinning around your own innovations!
Screenshot from
place to view a super & informative video!

Edison-Ford Winter Estate placard photo from from; book image from;  pictures compiled in the Li-Pix app from my camera while at the Edison-Ford Winter Estates; final photo of Edison Ford Winter Estates video from

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Ding Darling & the J. N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

While down in Florida earlier this summer, one of our beach days was spent at Captiva Island We got there by way of driving through Sanibel. In addition to having a glorious day basking in the sun, sifting through shells, and walking the beach. (Not to mention going to the best bookstore ever: Gene’s Books in Sanibel. That totally could have derailed us from that beach day! Nirvana! The perfect place to get a handful of beach reads!!)

I was thrilled to see we were driving right past the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge. In the travel magazine I had of the area, I was instantly getting sucked in, knowing that we’d have to do a stop on the way back from the beach!

Having learned about Ding from a book of environmental biographies that I love, I knew a bit about him. Jay Norwood Darling was an avid conservationist during the 1920s to 1940s. Born in Norwood, Michigan and growing up in Sioux City, Iowa on the Missouri River, he had a lot of opportunity out in nature. He became a cartoonist for the Sioux City Journal, later joining the Des Moines Register. He started signing his works “Ding” as a way of short-cutting his last name.

His cartoons of the times did what political cartoons of the time do! He centered much of his work on pollution, wildlife extinction, & his passions of hunting & fishing (& how governmental regulations of these should be adhered). He wanted to pass along his passion of enjoying nature without harming it.

Ding's political cartoons became syndicated in 130 daily newspapers, spreading forth not only his cartoons but his wit and satire. He won the Pulitzer Prize for his work twice: in 1923 and 1942, and was highly revered across country by a multitude of newspaper editors. To see his art (which has copyright restrictions tied to it) go to his gallery by clicking here.

In July of 1934, at the request of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Darling became head of the U.S. Biological Survey (the predecessor to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.) He did approximately $17 million worth of wildlife habitat and established the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. Among his triumphs, he started the Federal Duck Stamp Program, where the monies from the sales of the duck hunting stamps purchased habitats—drawing the first duck stamp!

This, of course, shows he’s a great champion to the environment, but what does this have to do with Florida?

Being a lover of nature, Ding had a winter home on Captiva for many years. His love for the area and for wildlife made it a natural spot to set up a refuge. Especially when you factor in that 250 different species of migratory birds pass through the area and have since been spotted there since it’s beginnings in 1945. Knowing those numbers, I started taking count. I was particularly thrilled when two exotic birds and an iguana greeted us at the gate. Of course, being late mid-day June and the heat of summer (rather than morning, evening or a cooler season), I only got up to a count of 12 different types birds. 13 if you count the mosquito as one!! (I swear, we were swarmed on a 1/3 mile hike in the refuge, with multiples munching on us simultaneously. My husband captured the picture of me running away in escape to get out of the chomp zone….notice that picture was not included! 😉)

Here's an amazing video that captures some of the beauty of the Sanibel & the Refuge, from the Ding Darling Society.

And yes! There’s an app for that!  The Discover Ding app helps make it more interactive once you are there. Likewise, a general QR reader will help you read the signs that are out there at several stops among the refuge for you as well, linking to videos and other pieces of information.

To learn more about the Refuge and Ding Darling, check out these links.

Video from, Map, Ding Darling image from;  Duck stamp pic from; all other photos from my camera

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate

A few years ago I read the Jacqueline Kelly book "The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate." There I met an 11 year old, nature-loving girl, ahead of her time in 1899, living in Central Texas in a household with her folks, 6 brothers, and her grandfather. It was her grandfather, Captain Walter Tate (a fellow naturalist), that Calpurnia got the lessons she adored--those of the outside world and science (rather than piano lessons and the social norms of the time that her mother valued regarding the "domestic arts.")

All good books need a sequel or a series, and in "The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate" we have book 2.  Now a year older and facing 1900 and on the cusp of her 13th birthday, Calpurnia is back with her scientific notebook and pencil in hand, and a genuine interest in Charles Darwin’s book, “Origin of Species.” She used clues from her natural surroundings & discussions with her grandfather to predict the coming of the 1900 Galveston Hurricane--in a day and age before satellites, radar, and televised weather reports. She wanted to be a scientist or veterinarian, and was learning a little bit in the ways of the lacking women's rights in the year 1900. Especially when she saw that her weekly allowance and future in college differed from that of her brothers.

Yes, Calpurnia is a girl ahead of her time, which is why this book was a natural addition on a booklist of the Women of STEM/STEAM. The overall theme of a feminist pre-teen in the Victorian era was striking, making me very glad my daughter and I are in today's times, not any other early time period! 

Additionally, as I was reading the book this summer, these quotes spoke to me--on behalf of innovation, education, feminism (then and now), and current day nightly news.

From Grandfather:”Remember, Calpurnia, you learn more from one failure than 10 successes. And the more spectacular the failure, the greater the lesson learned.” (page 66-67)

“Why wouldn’t they listen?” Calpurnia hiccupped.
From Grandfather: " 'People often don’t. You can lay evidence before them, but you cannot make them believe what they choose not to.' "  (Also page 66)

"What about learning something new? Granddaddy always said that life was full of opportunities to learn something new about the world, and one should glean all one could from an expert in his field, no matter what that field might be.”  (page 153)

For anyone who likes historical fiction, plucky female characters, and a time before all our modern conveniences infiltrated our homes, both of these books make for a refreshing read.  Additionally, Jacqueline Kelly and Teagan White have a new series of chapter books to introduce Calpurnia to younger readers: "Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet." With the same strength of character and love of nature, there are more turn-of-the-century stories to tell!  Some of the titles include: