Connie Barlow

PUBLICITY PHOTOS

 

 
CONNIE BARLOW is an author of popular science books and articles, and developer of THE GREAT STORY website. Connie's 2001 book, The Ghosts of Evolution (Basic Books), was Amazon.com's top-recommended science book for several months. Her previous books, Green Space, Green Time: The Way of Science (Copernicus Books), Evolution Extended: Biological Debates on the Meaning of Life (MIT Press), and From Gaia to Selfish Genes: Selected Writings in the Life Sciences (MIT Press), all explore the nexus of science, meaning, and inspiration.

Barlow, an evolutionary humanist and Unitarian Universalist, is also a well-known developer of curricula for children's religious education that highlight our shared evolutionary story. Since 2002, she and her husband (Rev. Michael Dowd) have lived entirely on the road as "America's evolutionary evangelists" — which is the title of the couple's occasional podcast. Barlow and Dowd also interview guests on their shared series, Inspiring Naturalism Podcast. No longer writing science books, Barlow now creates videos on evolutionary themes (and, since 2012, also on climate change), which she posts on her youtube channel, "ghostsofevolution".

She is founding member and webmaster of Torreya Guardians, an internet community of botanists, naturalists, and others dedicated to ensuring the continuing persistence in the wild of America's most endangered conifer tree: Torreya taxifolia. The group's efforts in moving this tree northward in a time of rapid climate change have been showcased in Orion, Audubon, and other conservation magazines. In the 1990s she contributed articles to Wild Earth magazine toward encouraging others in conservation to develop "deep-time eyes" by way of learning the history of evolutionary change and paleoecological interactions.

CONTACT CONNIE by email

Media by Connie Barlow

           

 


  
  
 

Click for
Topically Organized Lists
of Connie's Publications


Evolutionary Biology       ♦ Ecological Advocacy

   ♦ Evolutionary Humanism

Evolutionary Children's Curricula   

Podcasts       ♦ Videography


  
  


Writings in Evolutionary Biology

  • The Ghosts of Evolution: Nonsensical Fruit, Missing Partners, and Other Ecological Anachronisms, 2001 (Basic Books)
    written by Barlow; foreword by Paul Martin. ♦ ENTIRE BOOK FREELY AVAILABLE FOR READING ONLINE

  • Evolution Extended: Biological Debates on the Meaning of Life, 1994 (MIT Press)
    Anthology of classic and contemporary essays, assembled and edited by Barlow.

  • From Gaia to Selfish Genes: Selected Writings in the Life Sciences, 1991 (MIT Press)
    Anthology of classic and contemporary essays, assembled and edited by Barlow.

  • "Deep-Time Lags: Lessons from Pleistocene Ecology" 2009

    PDF of chapter by Connie Barlow in Gaia in Turmoil: Climate Change Biodepletion, and Earth Ethics in an Age of Crisis, edited by Eileen Crist and H. Bruce Rinker, 2009, MIT Press.

  • "Botanical Ghosts of Evolution", 2004
    A contributed essay to the 2004 volume, Forest Canopies, edited by Bruce Rinker and Meg Lowman. Based on Connie's 2001 book, The Ghosts of Evolution. Full text.

  • "What is Native to the Land?", 2003
    Cover story for the Fall 2003 issue of, Earth Matters, newsletter of the Northwest Earth Institute.

  • "Let There Be Sight! A Celebration of Convergence in Evolution", 2003
    Annotated list of a wealth of examples in which evolution has brought forth the same form or function in life on multiple occasions and in distinct lineages. Full text.

  • "Anachronistic Fruits and the Ghosts Who Haunt Them", 2001
       Based on Connie's 2001 book, The Ghosts of Evolution (Basic Books), this 8-page article (with color illustrations) in Arnoldia 61(2): 14-21, examines the evidence that some fruits native to North America are ecologically out of step with time — that is, they co-evolved to attract seed dispersers who went some 13,000 years ago (notably, mastodons and mammoths). PDF

  • "Ghost Stories From the Ice Age" Natural History, 2001
    Another short magazine article on Connie's 2001 book. PDF

  • "Haunting the Wild Avocado" Wild Earth, 2000
    Extract from chapter 1 of Connie's 2001 book, published in the Winter 2000/2001 issue. PDF
    Click the VIDEO at right for a 5-minute, visually rich (and playful!) introduction to these concepts. A PBS short VIDEO in 2013 also references Connie's book.
  •     

       
  • "Open Systems Living in a Closed Biosphere: A New Paradox for the Gaia Debate" (with Tyler Volk), 1990, Biosystems 23(4):371-84. technical paper: Abstract. See editor's acceptance letter (by Lynn Margulis) image left.


  • "Science Update: Rebirth of Philosophical Paleontology", Epic of Evolution Quarterly Fall 1998. PDF





  • Ecological Advocacy ("Deep Time Eyes")

        

    ABOVE: Barlow and Dowd's "Climate Resources" page
    of original videos and links.

      

    4-city "Climate Wake-Up" tour in Kentucky, May 2013
    sponsored by Kentucky Interfaith Power & Light
     

      


        CLICK LEFT: Connie advocating for "assisted migration" at a conference in 2004. Two years later, she founded TorreyaGuardians.org

    "The Torreya taxifolia USF&WS Recovery Plan Process: An Opportunity to Shift to a Deep-Time Perspective of Native Habitat" 2010 in PDF.

    What We Are Learning" about Torreya's northward habitat needs.

    Educational page on assisted migration papers hosted by Connie


        CLICK LEFT: 75-minute VIDEOBLOG of Connie reporting in 2013 on the progress Torreya Guardians is making on establishing the endangered Torreya conifer tree in northward locations, and how evidence of rapid climate shift is making this effort less controversial in the realm of conservation biology and endangered species management.

  • 00:01 Helping the most endangered conifer move north now
  • 07:14 N-S migrations during Pleistocene shifts in climate
  • 09:38 History of "assisted migration" controversy
  • 13:58 Introducing the lead Torreya Guardians
  • 15:24 Site visits to the sister species' habitats in California
  • 18:05 "Rewilding" T. taxifolia: poster plant for climate change
  • 25:34 Report on 2013 seed harvest of Torreya in North Carolina
  • 01:00:30 Recruiting new sites and ensuring genetic diversity
  • 01:13:09 Summary of assisted migration in a changing climate

  •     CLICK LEFT: 42-minute VIDEOBLOG launching Connie's new 2014 teaching series, "Climate, Trees, and Legacy". Here she introduces a learning and action series for helping trees adapt to climate change — species by species, decade by decade. Citizen naturalists are invited to research a favorite native tree species and begin to work with others to keep up with the northward movement of forest zones by planting and monitoring small numbers of wild seeds of common species onto private forested lands well north of where those seeds were collected.

    This "assisted migration" in a time of unprecedented climate shift will be increasingly necessary in the decades ahead. Foresters can create the maps to show us where species will need to move to. But we citizen naturalists will play a complementary role in ensuring that the full diversity of genotypes keeps pace with a warming and drying continent. Human action will mimic what birds, rodents, and other native seed dispersers have been able to accomplish on their own in previous periods of Earth history, when warming occurred at a slower pace.

    Access all episodes in this video series.



  • Green Space, Green Time: The Way of Science, 1997 (Copernicus Books)
    reflections by Barlow on ecological spirituality garnered from mainstream sciences

  • "Ecology Is the New Theology" 2013 (in SpiritEarth magazine)
    (with Michael Dowd) why the teachings of Thomas Berry are now even more urgent. (1 page in PDF)

  • "Deep-Time Lags: Lessons from Pleistocene Ecology" 2009

    PDF of chapter by Connie Barlow in Gaia in Turmoil: Climate Change Biodepletion, and Earth Ethics in an Age of Crisis, edited by Eileen Crist and H. Bruce Rinker, 2009, MIT Press.

  • "Arkansas River Pleistocene Dreamtime" 2009
    Connie's photoessay of a paleoecological "sacred site of the epic of evolution".

  • "Spotted Salamander Pond: Gaian Symbiosis in Miniature" 2012
    Connie's photoessay of her 7-week interaction with a "sacred site of the epic of evolution".

  • "Rewilding Torreya taxifolia: Reflections by Connie Barlow" 2008

    August 2008 commentary on the historic "assisted migration" of 31 seedlings of this endangered plant to private lands in the mountains of North Carolina, by Torreya Guardians. Click for PDF.

  • "Rewilding Megafauna" an Interview with Connie Barlow (on www.actionbioscience.org) 2007
    Click for link to interview.
      

    Feature article on CONNIE BARLOW's evolutionary activism in
    June 2008 ORION Magazine    

    "TORREYA STATE PARK perches on the steep, sandy banks of the Apalachicola, where the river twists slowly through the Florida Panhandle toward the Gulf of Mexico. This is one of the most isolated spots in Florida, rich only in plant life and prisons, stupefyingly hot in summer and eerily quiet nearly all year round. Most park visitors are on their way somewhere else, and when Connie Barlow stopped here on a winter day in 1999, she was no exception . . . "

    SEE ALSO Connie's eco-advocacy work in Audubon Magazine, May/June 2010, in an article titled "Guardian Angels."

      

  • "Bring Torreya taxifolia North — Now" 2005
    Essay co-authored with Paul S. Martin and published in the Winter 2005 issue of Wild Earth, in PDF.

  • "Forests in Peril: Book Review", 2004
    Review of book by Hazel Delcourt, published in Winter 2004 issue of Wild Earth magazine. Full text.

  • "Goodbye Eternal Frontier", 2002 (10 pages)
    Published in the Summer 2002 issue of Wild Earth magazine, this article is grounded on the 2001 book by Tim Flannery, The Eternal Frontier. It presents the 65 million year deep time story of the North American Continent, questioning what it means to be native to this continent: spiritual implications and practical recommendations for conservation biology. PDF.

  • "Trees Who Remember", 2001 (5 pages)
    Published in Trees for Life Engagement Calendar, 2001. Retyped for online publishing in 2010, with lots of photos added (including photos of Connie's mentor Paul Martin and memorabilia from the "Mammoth Memorial Service" that the two conjured up together and held at the Mammoth Site in Hot Spring SD, 1999. PDF.

  • "Aldo and Me", September 2000.
        CLICK LEFT: 5-minute VIDEO (left) of Connie reading Leopold's "On a Monument to a Pigeon" at the Passenger Pigeon Monument in Wisconsin.

    36 minute AUDIO of Connie reciting four items in honor of evolutionary ecologist Aldo Leopold (who envisioned the first designated wilderness in the world: the Gila. In September 2000, Connie sat on a log in the West Fork of the Gila and recited into a tape recorder 4 parts: (1) in-the-moment observations of the immediate surrounds, (2) "We Live in a Mythic Time": unpublished advocacy piece in behalf of the newly rewilded Mexican Gray Wolf (submitted to the Silver City Daily Press), (3) Connie's favorite excerpts from Aldo's A Sand County Almanac, and (4) Connie reciting the essay she wrote for the Trees for Life annual engagement calendar (published 2001, see above).


  • "Rewilding for Evolution" - Wild Earth, 1999
    An essay in support of Paul Martin's proposal to "Bring Back the Elephants" to North America, published in the same (Spring) issue. This essay also appears in an anthology of essays, Wild Earth, published by Milkweed Press in 2002. PDF. Click right for VIDEO on related topic.

  • "Re-Storying Biodiversity by Way of Science" Wild Earth, 1997
    More extracts from Connie's 1997 book, published in the Spring issue. PDF

  • "Because It Is My Religion" Wild Earth, 1996
    Extracts from Connie's 1997 book, Green Space, Green Time, published in the Fall issue. PDF
  •   



    Religious Naturalism / Evolutionary Humanism


  • Green Space, Green Time: The Way of Science, 1997 (Copernicus Books)
    a now-classic text in religious naturalism, featuring the evolutionary and ecological sciences

          

  • VIDEO: "Your Brain's Creation Story"
  • In August 2009, Connie Barlow (with Michael Dowd) were theme speakers at a Unitarian Universalist summer camp in Puget Sound, Washington. Connie took the lead in the illustrated presentation on the practical lessons and uses of evolutionary brain science for improving our lives — and for provisioning children and teens with an evolutionary perspective that can help them make better choices and develop healthy habits, despite having inherited "mismatched instincts" that pose challenges in modern-day life.

    Click LEFT for 54-minute VIDEO on YouTube.


          

  • "Death, Budgets, and Generational Justice"
        in TEXT, AUDIO, or VIDEO

    In August 2011, Connie Barlow and Michael Dowd gave twinned theme talks at two events in the American West: "Evolutionize Your Life" (by Michael) and "Evolutionize Your Death and Legacy" (by Connie). Inspired by the audience response and poignant storytelling that ensued, Connie wrote a call-to-action in essay form, urging her boomer generation to transform the debilitating and financially untenable death-denial that pervades American culture — largely because of literalist Christianity that interprets death as "the enemy."

    Click LEFT for 31-minute VIDEO.



  • "Imprinting Is Not Indoctrination (Connie Barlow's boldest statement yet!)
        Critiquing Dale McGowan's invited lecture at the annual gathering of Unitarian Universalists nationwide (in June), Connie calls for a reassessment of the way kids in religious liberally families and institutions are taught "religion". Our postmodern celebration of diversity and advocacy of free choice actually means we deny our children a basic human requirement: "a coherent cosmology (creation story / worldview) through which to enjoy and securely navigate the years of childhood wonder, learning, and innocence." (posted July 2010)

  • "We Are Stardust: The Epic of Evolution in Children's Religious Education" 2009

    Contributed chapter in the 2009 book, ed. Frederic John Muir, The Whole World Kin: Darwin and the Spirit of Liberal Religion (Skinner House Books). 6 questions for group discussion of this essay


        
     Two PODCAST series 

    co-hosted by
    CONNIE BARLOW
    and
    MICHAEL DOWD

    New Dimensions radio interview

     Performances 

    on

    DVDs


  • "Ecology Is the New Theology" 2013 (in SpiritEarth magazine)
    (with Michael Dowd) why the teachings of Thomas Berry are now even more urgent. (1 page in PDF)

  • "From Mystery to Wonder: Science vs. God of the Gaps" 2009

    Guest Blog by Connie Barlow on the ThankGodforEvolution.com website.

  • "Evolution Now: A Manifesto for Our UU Congregations" 2008

    Sermon delivered by Connie Barlow on 8/31/08 at Cedar Lane Untarian Universalist Church in Bethesda, Maryland. Click here for PDF or mp3 AUDIO.

  • "A Place at the Podium" 2008

    Guest blog by Connie Barlow on Michael Dowd's, Thank God for Evolution website, responding to the 2008 North Carolina U.S. Senate race, in which one candidate posted a negative campaign ad that implied her rival was an atheist.


    CONNIE BARLOW sermon
    "Celebrating Evolution"

    VIDEO of June 2008 sermon at

      Unitarian Universalist Church
    of Canandaigua NY  

    ♦ Click for audios of more SERMONS

      

    LISTEN to the hour-long
    June 7, 2009 audio interview
     



  • "Immortality Projects in the Internet Era: The Rise of Volunteerism, the Demise of Consumerism, and the Democratization of Cultural Progress" (blogpost, December 2011)


  • "The Death of the Fringe Suburb: Why we boomers are to blame and what the youngers can do about it" (blogpost, November 2011)


  • "Leaving a Legacy: Proposal for a New Health Insurance Program" 2008

    GOAL: to create a new governmental or nonprofit, voluntary group Health Insurance policy that (1) honors death as a natural / sacred part of the life process, and (2) distributes the financial savings thus accrued between group members (80%) and charities chosen by the dying or their guardians (20%). Click for PDF.

  • "Zoey 101, Brain Science 101" 2007

    Guest blog by Connie Barlow on Michael Dowd's, Thank God for Evolution website, that focused on the pregnancy scandal of teen TV star Jamie Lynn Spears, as a current event platform for appreciating the practical benefits (self-understanding, compassion) for promoting an understanding of the ongoing discoveries of evolutionary brain science and evolutionary psychology.

  • "Even The Heavens Are Not Immortal" 2005
    Interview by Craig Hamilton of Connie Barlow in the Fall 2005 issue of What Is Enlightenment? magazine. PDF

       LEFT: 10-minute YouTube VIDEO of the conclusion to Connie Barlow's
    "Death Through Deep-Time Eyes" presentation in Ashland OR, 2009.


    "Death As Natural and Generative in the Cosmos", 2004

    Text (and chart) used in public presentations to show how, in the last 500 years, discoveries by geographers, geologists, paleontologists, evolutionary biologists, cell biologists, astronomers and astrophysicists have demonstrated that death is not just something that happens to individual plants and animals but also is a natural and creative process affecting mountains, seaways, continents, species, and even stars and galaxies). Full text

  • "Garden of Eden on Your Dinner Plate?", 2004
    Essay published in the Spring 2004 issue of EarthLight, in PDF.

  • "Stardust: Toward a New Periodic Table of Elements", revised 2004
    Written for this website, and to support the "We Are Made of Stardust" ritual also on this website, this document provides an easy introduction to the broad outlines and fascinating details of how the various chemical elements were created in different kinds of stars. Full text or PDF.

       Photo-Essays of Connie's pilgrimages to SACRED SITES OF THE EPIC OF EVOLUTION

  • Great Unconformity of the Grand Canyon

  • Arkansas River Pleistocene Dreamtime

  • Lake Missoula / Scablands / Columbia Flood Basalt

  • Cretaceous Interior Seaway, KS

  • America's First Dinosaur Discovery (Haddonfield, NJ)

  • Dinosaur Ridge, CO

  • "Wall of Diversity", American Museum of Natural History, New York City

  • Little Colorado River, AZ

  • Passenger Pigeon Monument, Wayalusing State Park, WI

  • Sand Path at Down House, Darwin's Home in England

  • Ice Age Refuge: Apalachicola State Park, northern Florida

  • Archaean Encounter at Yellowstone

  • NASA's Apollo Flight Center, Houston TX

  • Type Specimen of an Ancestral Whale


  • "Is This Not Divine?", 2004
    A fragment of a sermon on religious naturalism, delivered extemporaneously by Connie at Sunday services at Unitarian Universalist churches. Full text.

  • "Epic of Evolution Ritual", 2004
    Entry written for the Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, edited by Bron Taylor, published 2005. Full text.


       LEFT: 3-minute YouTube Music Video Sing-Along
    (with displayed lyrics) of Connie Barlow
    singing her stardust song, "In the Beginning"


    RIGHT: "Deep Time Eyes" interview
    of Connie by Craig Hamilton

      

  • "An Immense Journey: Religious Naturalism and the Great Story", 2003
    Written for this website, this personal essay shows how the Great Story can enrich the experience of religious naturalism. Exemplars of this tradition include Julian Huxley, Aldo Leopold, Loren Eiseley, and Annie Dillard; in PDF or on-screen. You can also listen online to a 36 minute AUDIO of Connie reading an early version of this essay, "Loren and Me", outdoors in the Gila Wilderness (in September 2000). The audio begins with night sounds, followed by Connie reciting extracts from Loren Eiseley's essay, "The Judgment of the Birds" (published in his book, The Immense Journey). The final segment is Connie reading her memoir essay, "Loren and Me," which was written soon after (and which describes) her solo visioning experience in the Gila Wilderness in July 2000. That audio memoir also describes the climax of a previous solo experience in the Gila Wilderness that occurred in July 1997. Both of those experiences took place off-trail in the backcountry of the Little Creek Watershed.

  • "The Epic of Evolution" Earth Matters (Northwest Earth Institute), 1999
    2-page adaptation of Connie's 1997 book, Green Space, Green Time, published in the Spring issue. JPG Image

  • "The Way of Science and the Epic of Evolution" UU World, 1998
    Extracts from Connie's 1997 book, Green Space, Green Time: The Way of Science, published as the cover story for the Unitarian Universalists magazine (Nov/Dec). PDF

  • "The Way of Science" The Humanist, 1998
    More extracts from Connie's 1997 book, published in the member magazine of The Humanist Society (Mar/Apr). PDF

  • "Evolution and the AAAS" Science and Spirit, 1998
    A report of the 1997 "Epic of Evolution Conference" held in Chicago and sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. PDF

  • "Classic Quotations on the Epic of Evolution" Epic of Evolution, 1998
    Fifty inspiring quotations, ranging from Charles Darwin and Maria Montessori to Carl Sagan and Loren Eiseley, to Brian Swimme and Ursula Goodenough. PDF

  • "The Epic of Evolution" Teilhard Perspective, 1997
    A lengthier version of the above report. PDF

  • "Because It Is My Religion" Wild Earth, 1996
    Extracts from Connie's 1997 book, Green Space, Green Time, published in the Fall issue. PDF

  • "A Jostling on the Shelves" Teilhard Perspective, 1996
    A sample of a book review column Connie contributed for several years. PDF

  • "Clouds and the Crystal Bell" unpublished, 1998
    Reflections on a natural death and hospice. PDF. NOTE: The "Clouds" stress-reduction audio mentioned in this text is available through NewHealthVisions.com.



    ON-LINE AUDIOS in Unitarian Universalist or secular settings

  • 2013: "How Religion Is Failing Our Youth"
       Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville, NC

  • 2013: "Stages of Life: Dreams v. Legacy" (MLK Sunday)
       Unitarian Universalist Church of Boulder, CO (topics incl death and climate change)

  • 2012: "Evolution: The Next Generation"
       Cadboro Bay United Church, Victoria BC (Canada)

  • 2011: "Modern Women with Stone-Age Instincts"
       Interview by Claire Zammit for Women on the Edge of Evolution

  • 2009: "Your Brain's Creation Story"
       UU Congregation of Whidbey Isl, WA

  • 2008: "Evolution: Truth, Beauty, and Utility"
       UU Fellowship of Hendersonville, NC

  • 2008: "We Are Stardust" (intergenerational service)
       Unitarian Universalist Church of Riverside, CA

  • 2008: "Evolution Now: A Manifesto for our UU Congregations"
       Cedar Lane UU Church Bethesda, MD (PDF).

  • 2006: "Celebrating Evolution"
       Second Unitarian Church of Omaha, NE

  • 2006: "An Evolutionary Celebration of Death"
       Unitarian Society of Hartford, CT

  • 2005: "What Is Our Cosmic Task?"
       Yakima Unitarian Universalist Church, WA

  • 2003: "Is This Not Divine?"
       Unitarian Church of Asheville, NC

  • Audio Links to SERMONS BY OTHERS that Connie highly recommends


  • Evolutionary Children's Curricula

      

    "Failing Our Youth: A Call to Religious Liberals"

  • Online Essay (Barlow and Dowd 2012)

  • Audio (22 min)

  • VIDEO (58 min; left; Barlow 2013)

    Excerpt: "Here lies an extraordinary opportunity for theologically progressive institutions to do what the fundamentalist churches cannot. Liberal churches can offer the youngers an evolutionary worldview that delights children in their wonder years, offers immensely practical insights and guidance for those going through puberty (by teaching them about "mismatched instincts" and "supernormal stimuli"), and empowers teens to ponder the meaning of life — and their life — as they edge toward adulthood."

  • Evolutionary Religious Education (10 pp)

  •    "My Universe Story" (children's curriculum) (WORK IN PROGRESS)

    8-9 month curriculum for provisioning 3rd and 4th graders in liberal religious, Montessori, or private-school sessions with a coherent, meaningful, and fun worldview. 28 major events in the 13.7 billion year story of the Universe are celebrated, in order, one or two per week. For each, the child selects a representative bead, culminating in the final project of stringing them together into a loop or necklace. Crucial are that the final 2 events/beads pertain to the child's own birth — and hope for their future. Click here for PDF.

       "Remember Who You Are: Living a Mythic Life" (children's curriculum) 2009

    12-part curriculum for assisting middle school youth in the life passage from childhood ("Explorers in the Garden") to early adolescence ("Thespians at the Oasis"), which uses the understandings drawn from the 2008 book by Bill Plotkin, Nature and the Human Soul, and using scene-by-scene the Disney movie The Lion King as a beloved bridge and focus for the middle school mindset. Overview and full curriculum available for free viewing and downloand.

       "Tree Talks About Death" (children's story) 2009

    This story is a non-picture book, designed to be read interactively to a child (ages 6 through 11, along with any post-teen, playful adult). The goal is to meaningfully and memorably convey a mythic tale through which the deep understandings, thanks to the scientific worldview, of the creative role that death plays at all scales of the cosmos can be grasped by both head and heart. Download in PDF. Click here to listen to free online AUDIO of Connie reading aloud this story.

       "The River of Life" (children's curriculum) - a.k.a "Ancestor's Tale" 2009

    From 2006 - 2009, this program created by Connie (but grounded in the evolutionary data offered by Richard Dawkins in his 2004 book, Ancestor's Tale) was the primary kids program she delivered personally at more than 40 church and private school settings. In November 2009, she made the entire curriculum available online for free download. See VIDEO below of Connie presenting this program to kids in 2011.

       "12-Part Stardust Curriculum for Children" 2007

    80-page PDF of lesson plans for teaching elementary-age children our relationship to stars and the Universe.

       EVOLUTIONARY PARABLES by Connie Barlow:
  • "Startull: The Story of an Average Yellow Star", 2006
  • "Pluto's Identity Crisis", 2003
  • "Earth's Challenging Childhood", published in EarthLight, 2002   AUDIO
  •     Click on image left to watch Part 1 of a (two-part) 90-minute VIDEO of Connie presenting "Ancestor's Tale for Kids" to a mixed-age group of children in 2011 at a Unitarian Universalist church in Georgia, USA.

    After the video starts playing, we recommend you click on the YouTube button in the lower-right part of the picture screen. That will take you to the video's full YouTube page. From there, you can read the long text caption that summarizes the highlights. On the YouTube page, click on the gray "Show more" directly below the truncated text.

    Notice that the text summary includes a full TABLE OF CONTENTS with linked timestops (in blue), which you can click to advance instantly to that portion of the video.

    The Part 2 VIDEO of Ancestor's Tale for Kids opens at confluence #11. Two minutes into that program a child asks why some people don't believe in evolution. Watch Connie's imaginative response!


      

    LEFT: Connie with Montessori children in Houston, 2005, leading the "We Are Stardust" glitter ritual/song. RIGHT: Telling the story of North America using Connie's Great Story Beads.


      


      

    ABOVE LEFT: 5-minute VIDEO of Connie Barlow speaking to adults on how the science of "stardust" (especially when presented evocatively to children) can help modern peoples recover a deeply felt relationship to "ancestors" in the night sky. See also "From Stardust to Us", The Spiral, 2001: a PDF Report (co-written with children's book author Jennifer Morgan) of guiding children at "The Walk Through Time" exhibit.

    ABOVE RIGHT: 7-minute "Story for All Ages" at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County, NJ (October 2013). Connie improvised a story to accompany a guest sermon by Michael Dowd ("The Future Is Calling Us To Greatness"), and used these props: her necklace of Great Story Beads, Michael's long strand of Great Story Beads, the "Earth from Space" stained glass window in the sanctuary, a pair of Hubble Space photos she has on poster board, and the children themselves.


  • "We Are Stardust: The Epic of Evolution in Children's Religious Education"
    Long version of a chapter contributed by Connie Barlow to a 2009 book edited by Unitarian Universalist minister Fred Muir. The book is The Whole World Kin: Darwin and the Spirit of Liberal Religion, published by Skinner House Books. Connie's chapter is a summary of her work and philosophy in bringing the Epic of Evolution into religious education for children.
    Advance the video at right to 1:00 minute into the program for a sample reading from Connie's chapter.

  • "Evolution Now: A Manifesto for Our UU Congregations", sermon by Connie Barlow delivered August 2008 - a plea for Unitarian Universalists (and other liberal religious folk) to ensure that we give our children a coherent, inspiring creation story to guide their lives and love for all of creation. Click to listen online or read in PDF.
  •    


  • "Imprinting Is Not Indoctrination (Connie Barlow's boldest statement yet!)
        Critiquing Dale McGowan's invited lecture at the annual gathering of Unitarian Universalists nationwide (in June), Connie calls for a reassessment of the way kids in religious liberally families and institutions are taught "religion". Our postmodern celebration of diversity and advocacy of free choice actually means we deny our children a basic human requirement: "a coherent cosmology (creation story / worldview) through which to enjoy and securely navigate the years of childhood wonder, learning, and innocence." (posted July 2010)




      
       Sample or subscribe to Connie's   

    PODCAST SERIES

  • "Inspiring Naturalism"

  • "Evolutionary Evangelists"

  • CONTACT CONNIE by email


    WWW www.TheGreatStory.org


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