Meet Gitanjali Rao, Time Magazine's first-ever Kid of the Year
Play • 22 min

Today we have a special episode featuring an old friend of ours -- scientist and inventor Gitanjali Rao. Time Magazine recently named her the first-ever Kid of the Year!

We first met Gitanjali back in 2018, when she was the co-host for a series of episodes we did all about water. Back then, she was a 12 year old who had recently won 2017 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge.

Now, she's a very busy 15 year-old who is an inventor, STEM advocate and author. Molly and Gitanjali chat about how kids can turn their ideas into reality, and why kids shouldn't be afraid to share their viewpoints and skills with the world -- we need them!

Gitanjali has also written a book, which you can check out here.

Also, you can hear Gitanjali judge a very science-y Smash Boom Debate: Helium vs Neon!

Check out the water series that Gitanjali co-hosted:

History Storytime - For Kids
History Storytime - For Kids
Sophie (7) & Ellie (4) tell history for kids
Isambard Kingdom Brunel with the Brunel Museum
Sophie (age 7) & Ellie (age 5) team up with the Brunel Museum to tell the story of the incredible engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel helped build the modern world.----more---- Sophie and Ellie are keen to explore Victorian Britain. They want to do a podcast on Isambard Kingdom Brunel but Daddy doesn’t know much about him. Luckily, Sarah, from the Brunel Museum is on hand to help. Together the three of them tell the story of Isambard Kingdom Brunel. But we start with his father. Marc Brunel is a Frenchman who has been sent to priest school. But his heart is not in it. Instead he likes making things. When the French Revolution breaks out he is forced to flee France. But not before falling in love with an English woman. They are parted by the Revolution and Marc flees to America. There he starts to achieve his life’s ambition to become an engineer. While in New York he meets the famous Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton is so impressed with Marc Brunel that he writes him a recommendation to get a job as an engineer in London. Marc travels to England and is married to his English sweetheart. Once in England he starts building things. One of those projects is a new tunnel under the Thames. The tunnel is wanted by the Duke of Wellington to help transport soldiers to the south coast. But people also hope that it will be used by paying customers too. The tunnel is considered an impossibility to build. But Marc has a helper. He has a new Chief Engineer, his son Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Together the two Brunels come up with an extraordinary new way of tunnelling underwater based on how a worm tunnels. The tunnel is built and Queen Victoria herself pays a visit. Isambard Kingdom Brunel is in demand from others for his engineering skills. He is asked to build the new Railway line to the West of England. This is a huge undertaking and needs bridges, tunnels and viaducts. Many of Brunel’s ideas are completely revolutionary. But they work and Brunel spends his time travelling around in his own railway carriage overseeing the project. Next the girls tell the story of Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s ship building. He repeatedly built the biggest ship in the world. We hear the story of why he kept building bigger and bigger ships. We also hear how the activities of those ships helped make the modern world of telecommunications that we enjoy today. Finally, the girls reflect on the incredible achievements of Isambard Kingdom Brunel and how doing his maths homework at school helped him make the modern world! ABOUT THE BRUNEL MUSEUM This episode was a joint production with the Brunel Museum and their team – especially Sarah Kuklewicz. The Brunel Museum tells the story of one of the world’s great engineering dynasties. Brunel organised the world’s first underground concert party on the Museum site in 1827, and the Museum celebrates and interprets music and theatre as well as engineering. They aim to preserve and share widely the ground-breaking stories of the Thames Tunnel project and the outstanding achievements of the Brunel family and their relevance to our lives today. You can find out more about them here: Homepage - Brunel Museum (thebrunelmuseum.com) Obviously the Museum is closed at the moment but teachers and parents might be interested in the activity sheets on their website. It is particularly suitable for KS1 and KS2 and their Victorian topic work. Activity sheets - Brunel Museum (thebrunelmuseum.com) PLEASE DO SUPPORT THE MUSEUM Normally we include a link to our own Patrons’ Club. But rather than that this week we would be grateful if anyone would consider donating to the Brunel Museum. It’s a difficult time for all our museums and the whole heritage sector. I know any small donation would be much appreciated as they were very generous helping us prepare this episode: Make a donation - Brunel Museum (thebrunelmuseum.com)
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