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As schools have closed and the world has hunkered down to shelter against COVID-19, both parents and educators have looked for creative ways to keep their children engaged. From nature walks to Zoom meetings to remote field trips, these unique ideas have kept learning fresh and fun. Now comes the latest wrinkle: celebrity lecturers.
Interactive learning site Varsity Tutors announced this week that it’s partnering with some famous faces to help teach live classes throughout the month of May. The classes will be available for free as part of the company’s Virtual School Day, and the participating celebrities are The Big Bang Theory’s Mayim Bialik, Olympic Gold Medalist and honorary Charlie's Angel Aly Raisman, former football player, astronaut and engineer Leland Melvin and Dancing With The Stars champion Julianne Hough.
The celebrities will, of course, be leading classes within their own areas of expertise. So, Bialik, who holds a PhD in neuroscience, will be talking about neuroscience, while Raisman will be discussing health and wellness. Melvin will be talking space and Hough will discuss choreography and movement. As you can imagine, all of the celebrities are very excited. Here’s a quote from Mayim Bialik that sounds like it came from someone with a PhD in neuroscience, per Look To The Stars…
Neuroscience is definitely esoteric, but I think there are aspects of it that can be brought down to the level of an interested child easily. My class is a chance to lift the clouds around neuroscience and help kids discover all that’s interesting about this area of study.
The Virtual School Day initiative was launched by Varsity Tutors back in March with a goal of providing as many free remote learning programs as possible to children who were out of school. The company is now offering more than 50 hours of programming every week. Most of the live classes aren’t led by celebrities, but they are led by tutors who are experts in the field.
On another note, it’s really nice to see celebrities finding a way to connect during quarantine. Many of them have been getting downright goofy as their movies, tv shows and other endeavors have been mostly put on hold. Teaching lessons to children is a great way to stay motivated, hopefully make a difference and honestly just pass the time. Plus, it only takes one spark for a kid to realize how fulfilling learning can be, and if the spark happens to come from a celebrity, that just makes for a cool story down the road.
Shoutout to all the celebrities who are participating here. I hope the classes go well this month, and for all of our sake, I hope they’re each able to get back to their day jobs sooner rather than later.