Abstract for:System Dynamics in Primary and Secondary Education

After Jay Forrester cracked the servomechanism problem, created the Whirlwind computer, and founded the field of System Dynamics he was looking for a next step. With his old mentor Gordon Brown Jay decided to take on kids. He started with MIT undergraduates and, recognizing that it is teachers that learn the most, had them develop curriculum for primary and secondary school students. Out of that grew many things, including Roadmaps and a cast of characters who shared the passion of Jay and Gordon: Jim Waters, Barry Richmond, Allen Boorstein, and Diana Fisher to name just a few. The authors have been honored to share in that enthusiasm, and have these education initiatives be part of their life's journey. In this presentation we will recount some of the key things that happened moving systems thinking and system dynamics into the classroom, including successes and setbacks, and share our vision of why it brings value and what we hope to see going forward. As important as it is to the world, every teacher and every student has their own personal story, and we hope to bring that out.