Sugata Mitra’s TED winning Talk – The child-driven education

Education scientist Sugata Mitra tackles one of the greatest problems of education — the best teachers and schools don’t exist where they’re needed most. In a series of real-life experiments from New Delhi to South Africa to Italy, he gave kids self-supervised access to the web and saw results that could revolutionize how we think about teaching.

Watch the awe-inspiring video below

If you want to Help, there are 5 things you can do

  1.  Try out a Self-Organized Learning Environment (SOLE) in your home, school or community.
    Download the SOLE ToolKit here. Share your feedback here
  2. Join the School in the Cloud mentor network of educators. Email Sugata to become part of the network
  3. Make a financial contribution to this TED Prize wish.
    Email sugata@ted.com
  4. Spread the word on Twitter #TEDSOLE
  5. Help build the School in the Cloud. See the list of current needs below and email sugata@ted.com to make a commitment.


This is a list of current needs for the School in the Cloud:

Core technology assistance

  • Cloud-based software design to manage laboratory school operations and education resources.
  • Video conference capability
  • Biometric and sensory technology


  • Computers
  • Large monitors
  • Furniture designers
  • Solar air conditioners and heaters
  • Water purification units
  • Innovative display methods (chalkboard paint, glass whiteboards, etc.)

Automated Remote Systems

  • Robotic cleaning machines
  • Remote heating, lighting and cooling systems
  • Other auto-monitoring systems


  • Build experience in the developing world and tropics
  • Awareness of safety, power, electric and storage issues


  • Identity branding
  • Web design
  • Training video toolkit

Email sugata@ted.com to make a commitment.

6 comments on “Sugata Mitra’s TED winning Talk – The child-driven education

  1. I do enjoy the manner in which you have presented this specific situation and it does supply me some fodder for consideration. Nonetheless, from just what I have witnessed, I just wish as the actual opinions stack on that people today stay on point and don’t get started upon a soap box regarding the news of the day. Yet, thank you for this exceptional point and even though I can not really go along with it in totality, I respect the viewpoint.

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  4. I have been aware of your computer-in-a-hole-in-a-wall study for a while, and was delighted by it – your lecture has validated my own ‘craziness’!! I homeschooled my own children (c.1998) from when they were in grade 6/7 after they had attended Montessori schools. Possibly the most important Montessori principle is that of ‘a controlled environment and the freedom to choose and move within it’ and I see traces of that in the School in the Clouds approach – but better. I also – albeit briefly- ran an alternative school where I introduced the ‘teacher-as-the-facilitator’ approach and made it a rule that no one came to school unless they wanted to really be there. Sadly, CoreStar EduCentre closed after only a few short years due to my poor management – I was attempting a round-table approach which failed dismally. I am friends with many of the ex students and they are without exception, exceptional people! I would love to do this SOLE approach, even tho’ i have only one child for whom I facilitate homework. I will download the info and have a look. Thanks for a wonderful lecture.

  5. Terrific info. Hats off to you for the hard work. Thank u for sharing the thought. Keep posting with lots more.

  6. There are two points that require attention in Sugata Mitra’s theory, regarding the 2013 Ted Talk winning presentation he made. He posits that the modern education system is obsolete, and that data is no longer required to be learned wrote in schools, since it can be acquired on a computer.


    Mitra Theory #1. Since learning reading/writing/math were required to replicate the british empire throughout the world in that day, his theory is that schools as we know them now could be eliminated.

    Rebuttal #1. To rely on computers as a permanent means of storing data is shortsighted. They are entirely too fragile to be relied upon as a means of retaining information or to employ for learning in perpetuity. A single large CME will wipe out every non-hardened computer on the face of the earth. Humanity would be back to the early industrial age from top to bottom.

    Mitra Theory #2. Teachers in his new learning system could simply put greater and greater questions before children, and encourage children to them figure them out.

    Rebuttal #2. While this seems inspired, it relies on teachers having the knowledge in the first place. His ‘tangent of an angle’ comment creates a failure loophole in his theory, since knowledge of the tangent of an angle, and how it would be used to determine if a foreign body would impact the earth, would have to be understood fully by the teacher already, and would have to be conveyed to the children per force in the event of computers not being functional as in the above rebuttal. Which puts schools right back where they are in today’s world. Computers and their access to a global network of information are the foundation of his entire talk, and they must not be relied upon for learning in perpetuity.

    The one saving grace of the current learning system is that it regularly and broadly recreates the knowledge base of basic human abilities, toward those most fundamental aspects required to perpetuate our civilization. Should any outside event ever threaten humanity, this form of learning will ensure our salvation from falling back into ignorance and the uneducated savagery of our distant past. Relegating information to only be accessible by computers or to be held and conveyed only by computers is a fatal mistake, and one that could dearly cost humanity the one pure creation we have forged out of the darkness with our rise from the shadows of the ages: our knowledge.

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