John sent two articles about roles that grandparents are playing in children’s lives — in this case, grandmas.
The blog Microtask details Professor Sugata Mitra’s cool insights about the Grandma Effect.
“The theory is that grandmas are good at encouraging kids. They praise them and say things like: ‘Now that is clever dear, I’d never have been able to analyze the molecular structure of DNA all by myself!’ Supervising village children, Indian grandmothers got some impressive results: test scores almost doubled in two months …
“And the next step? The ‘Granny Cloud.’ While working at Newcastle University, Professor Mitra recruited over 200 UK grandmothers as volunteers. Broadcasting via webcam each ‘grandmother’ spends at least an hour a week encouraging classes of Indian school children. Some of the Indian locations are so remote that the Granny Cloud is the only access kids have to education.” More.
The second link that John sent has more on the Granny Cloud. Jane Wakefield writes for the BBC: “Jackie Barrow isn’t a granny yet but as a retired teacher she felt she might qualify for an advert in The Guardian newspaper calling for volunteers to help teach children in India.
“She did, and today, three years on, she is reading ‘Not Now Bernard’ via Skype to a small group of children in the Indian city of Pune.
“They love it and are engaged in the experience as she holds up an Easter egg to show them how children in the UK celebrated the recent holiday.” More.
Good work, Prof. Mitra! (Or as my grandson would say when I manage to attach the bike helmet properly, “Good work, Grandma!”) Everyone knows grandmas are cheerleaders, but Prof. Mitra took it to the next step.
Photo: Three-year-old photographer
Grandma saying, “Very creative camera work, Dear!”