Krishna Learning Resource for Children
Published on September 27th, 2010 | by Harmonist staff1
It is refreshing, and perhaps astonishing, that a group of worldwide devotees of Krishna have produced an educational resource that tops anything available commercially. Over three years, about 200 people have given their time, funds, and talent to creating the first professional level program to teach children how to read English.
Anyone who is both a devotee of Krishna and works with children has probably wanted to have high quality materials to teach their children about Krishna, and moral values, while giving them academic skills. Finally there is a program that achieves these goals.
If someone goes through the Dr. Best Learn to Read book series from start to finish, they will progress from learning the English alphabet to fluent reading. The books use four international systems of teaching reading and were created with the guidance of 2 of the top reading experts in the world. The 83 books—42 color and 41 black and white—are “firsts” in several ways. They combine whole language with phonics—two systems that are usually at odds. They combine the best professional learning systems, world class printing, and illustrations by published artists and animators, with stories of Krishna. Most amazingly, they use the cutting edge technology of a MagicPEN that makes the program interactive and incredibly fun.
With the MagicPEN, lightly touching a page allows one to hear the text in English, or one of 24 other languages including Spanish, Hindi, German, Russian, Portuguese, Bengali, and French. Touch characters and objects in the pictures with the MagicPEN and they speak or sing. Baby Krishna giggles and we can hear the clay pot breaking as Krishna steals yogurt while mother Yasoda tends the stove. The voices are not a computerized drone, but recordings of devotees speaking with bhakti. With the MagicPEN’s recording features, children and adults can have the characters in the illustrations speak in their own voices, too!
This technology makes it easy for children—or adults—who have English as a second language to learn English. It also gives native English speakers exposure to 24 other languages! And in the activity books/guides there are hundreds of educational, devotional, and fun activities to make this a complete learning program.
If there are no children among your family and friends you might consider sponsoring a full series of books for schools in India that serve poor children. Many of us may go to India and see that they are adopting the worst of the West, and we want to do something about it. Educating the children differently is one of the biggest things we can do, a very powerful way to influence Indian culture to go back to her roots. A lot of Indian youth are rejecting their culture as old fashioned “village ideas”—even vegetarianism is on the decline—and would rather adopt the ways of the West. But if they see such ideas presented in top Western quality, with first-class printing, Disney level illustrations, and using cutting edge Western technology, the children in India—and the teachers, parents and schools—will be much more likely to accept them.