Sugata Mitra’s ‘School in the Cloud‘ idea is this year’s TED prize winner. The revolutionary plan for education aims to create a learning center in India, which could later expand to other areas.
This would enable children to self-guide their discoveries and give them access to a network called the “granny cloud”, who Skype in to help them explore their interests. These retired volunteer adults encourage the children and ask questions to get them thinking. Mitra said:
My wish is to help design the future of learning by supporting children all over the world to tap into their innate sense of wonder and work together. Help me build the School in the Cloud, a learning lab in India, where children can embark on intellectual adventures by engaging and connecting with information and mentoring online. I also invite you, wherever you are, to create your own miniature child-driven learning environments and share your discoveries.
Mitra hopes these cloud schools will supplement the children’s daily education by operating on weekends, before and after school, and they’ll initially offer English language learning. A toolkit has also been released for those who want to try out a Self-Organized Learning Environment (SOLE) in their home, school, or community.