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Jeffrey A. Lockwood, pp. 173-180
A grasshopper scientist describes the beauty of insect sounds, remembering time spent in France studying science, nature, and the music of insects. Numerous musical terms, metaphors, and connections could spark critical thinking about the natural beauty of music and the beautiful music of nature.
Robert J. Romano Jr., pp. 188-190
A writer, sitting at his computer, becomes entranced by the activities of a ladybug in the room, juxtaposing the simple but fascinating creature against the everyday items and technology of his office.
Michael J. Caduto, pp. 203-206
An essay about the enduring folklore associated with turtles, particularly among Native American tribes but other cultures as well. Argues that the "impressive storehouse of scientific knowledge" we have developed is no match for the "slow and steady" evolutionary strategy of turtles. Connections to anthropology, mythology, Indigenous studies.
Simmons B. Buntin, pp. 209-219
The narrator is attempting to photograph the vibrant colors of a blooming dessert and reflects on the nature of color, the emotions evoked by different colors, how colors are represented and ephemeral in nature. Could be used for connections to color theory, art, photography, even psychology in how color affects our psyche.
Aleria Jensen, pp. 220-223
Lying in a rare Alaskan meadow, the narrator lets go of all care and loses herself in a simply sensory experience, letting her mind wander like a child's imagination, watching at eye level as a bee pollinates the flowers.
Ted Cable, pp. 224-234
The author discusses the unjust vilification of common birds in the US: starlings, sparrows and pigeons. Thought-provoking insights related to nativism (because all of these birds were imported to the US), the nature of beauty, and elitism in nature conservation. The birds discussed are ones that our students will know and about which they will probably have experiences to share.