“I want to teach you how to think,” Professor Smith told his blank-faced students. Pens poised to copy his slides into their books, he instructed them to look out the window. “What do you see?”

“A tree,” one answered.

“And why are the leaves of the tree green?”

“Photosynthesic pigment.”

Smith sighed. He stared out the window for a long time. Can’t they see the butterflies and the birds and the intricate web of life and death created by the interplay of predation and grazing?

“What about the caterpillars?” another student asked. Smith smiled. They were starting to think.

(This story is shamelessly drawn from this article in Scientific American)

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