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December 27, 2013

Part of OnEarth's Answers from the Past month, in which our contributors explore how contemporary thinking on sustainability has been influenced by wisdom handed down to us from previous generations. Read more here.

In his 2005 book...

November 26, 2013

My daughter Barrett turned two last month, and she’s becoming quite the conversationalist. On preschool days we start our mornings by talking about whom she’ll see and what she’ll do. We walk down the street talking about shapes and colors and feelings and foods that she might serve to her dolls at a tea party.

Though her strong language skills are a good sign, I have no idea what Barrett’s ultimate intellectual capability might be. Genes have a lot to do with that, but so, it...

August 29, 2013

My daughter will start preschool this year, and although she’s too young to pick out her own supplies and will mostly use whatever the school provides, I’m feeling nostalgic for the scent of freshly sharpened pencils and the sound of a composition notebook opening for the first time. So when my daughter’s preschool teacher asked for advice on the hunt for greener classroom supplies—from molding clay and finger paints to toy bins and pencil cases—I was eager to help with the search.


July 10, 2013

Here are some things I expected to have to teach my 20-month-old daughter: how to say “please” and “thank you,” use a fork and knife, and share her toys. Nobody ever told me that I’d be teaching her how to spit, too. Somehow, I thought I would be teaching her not to do that.

Yet now when my sugar-starved child lunges for her toothbrush and its dollop of delicious orange-flavored toothpaste at bedtime, I find myself thinking about the day, coming very soon, when I’ll take her...