Dr. Jill Biden poses with a digital picture frame with rotating photos taken by young photographers from the National Geographic Kids My Shot photo community at the Vice President’s Residence, in Washington, D.C., May 13, 2015. White House Photo by David Lienemann
This week the National Geographic Kids Insiders group had a chance to speak to the Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden about her support with My Shots and the import role parents and educators play in inspiring children to learn about the world around them. It was such a treat to speak to her and hear her enthusiasm for teachers (she has been a teacher for over three decades now) and support for military families.
A Woman on a Mission:
As she spoke about her passion for education, women’s issues and support for military families you got the feeling that she is a woman on a mission. One of which is to support and encourage parents and educators to inspire children to learn about the world around them. Last year, the National Geographic Bee National winners were able to meet with her in her home and she said she was so inspired by the enthusiasm the kids had for the world around them. She said that though she teaches adults, she still takes a map into the class and makes it a part of her teaching. Education is her life’s work and she was grading papers two days after her husband was sworn in.
How Education Has Changed:
One of the bloggers asked her how education has changed since she started teaching over three decades ago. Dr. Biden spoke about how her grandmother would take her to the class she taught and it was a one room classroom with long tables for the children to sit in. You can imagine a one room schoolhouse! She still has the brass ring bell her grandmother used in her classroom today! Recently she was reminded of how much learning has changed when she visited a community college class and at every desk was a computer. Technology plays such a big part in learning today.
Why the National Geographic Bee is Important for Schools:
When asked why the National Geographic Bee is so important for schools to participate in she empathized the how it is up to parents and teachers to encourage the children to read about different parts of the world, learn about new foods and cultures and the National Geographic Bee helps get children excited about learning.
Another blogger asked how kids can help make a difference in the world around them and Dr. Biden reiterated the point that it is up to parents and educators to encourage them to get involved in their communities. Whether it be to help serve meals at their local soup kitchen or support their local military families, by involving the kids with their community it makes them more aware of the world around them.
Support for Military Families:
Dr. Jill Biden is a children’s author and said she wanted to help create awareness about military families and what it might mean for them when their family members are deployed. She hopes that her book will help other children understand what military kids might be going through when a parent or relative is away and to show how much resilience they must have to go through this situation.
Managing it all:
When asked how she manages it all she chuckled and said that she doesn’t always manage “it all.” I think we can all relate to that! But that it helps her to be organized and at different times in your life you will have challenges and sometimes she falls but keeps moving forward.
It was a real treat listening to Dr. Jill Biden’s enthusiasm for education and the important role parents have in encouraging our children to be more aware of the world they live in.
If you would like to see how your school could register for the National Geographic Bee go here.
To read more about Dr. Jill Biden and her work with the National Geographic My Shot go here.
Note: We are part of the National Geographic Kids Insider group and provided with National Geographic Kids materials throughout the year but all opinions are our own.