A newsy podcast by a mother-daughter team


Eight-year-old Leela Sivasankar Prickitt and her journalist mom Lyndee’s podcast, Newsy Jacuzzi, covers subjects starting from Baby Shark to Black Lives Matter

For the final three months, eight-year-old Leela Sivasankar Prickitt, and her mom Lyndee Prickitt have taken a liking to a somewhat odd spot of their residence in Delhi. Under the mattress. It is the place the mother-daughter duo information their podcast, Newsy Jacuzzi, which covers international information. “It’s difficult to find a quiet spot even inside the house in Delhi. You always hear honking sounds from outside. So, we figured it’s quietest under the bed,” jokes Lyndee about their makeshift studio.

Lyndee, a Texan, started her journalism profession with the BBC Radio within the UK. Then, she moved to India when she labored for Reuters. She has been dwelling in Delhi for the final 9 years. “Leela’s a desi girl though,” she says, “Her favourite food is…”

“…Rajma rice. And, idli. And, dosa,” interjects the bubbly eight-year-old. With each mother and father discussing information in the home (Lyndee’s husband’s a journalist too), the innately curious Leela received all in favour of their conversations. “She’d want to know why mummy and daddy like or dislike a politician,” explains Lyndee.

Lyndee and Leela began Newsy Jacuzzi as a result of they wished an exercise to occupy themselves after the pandemic prevented their normal summer time journey. “Stuck inside all summer during the nasty COVID-19 pandemic, all we could do to feel connected to the world was report on it,” they are saying of their website, newsyjacuzzi.com.

For the little ones

Newsy Jacuzzi’s a youngsters podcast. Most of its contributors and viewers are additionally preteens. But in contrast to most children podcasts, Newsy Jacuzzi doesn’t shrink back from discussing critical socio-political subjects like local weather change and racism.

“Can’t run away from bad news, right, mama?” Leela asks her mom throughout an episode that discusses racial inequality within the US. Lyndee replies, “As much as we want to, sometimes [we can’t]. Knowledge is power. We need to understand the problems first if we are to get anywhere near solving them and making the world a better place.” She feels it will be significant for kids to know the world. And, the podcast is an try and spark their curiosity for information — the great, dangerous, stunning and ugly.

The tone of the podcast is likely to be playful; its manufacturing is skilled. Lyndee’s BBC expertise is useful. She and Leela have weekly editorial discussions. Then, they gather information tales from their Indian and abroad correspondents (principally kids of Lyndee’s former colleagues and a few of Leela’s pals). Lyndee then works for 2 days to place all the pieces collectively.

Lyndee, based on the web site, doubles up the podcast’s ‘sound effects finder’ and the ‘big-story-explainer’. The first position, she says, was difficult for the primary two weeks. But it’s the second that’s extra fascinating. How does one clarify subjects like Black Lives Matter or local weather change to kids?

“It’s tricky, of course. A lot of us have strong views, which we consider is the right one. We refuse to listen to others. But there are some basic tenets of journalism that you can follow. You try to report just the facts and say both sides of a story. The idea is to introduce children to news and make them curious and not impose your views on them.”

The podcast, she provides, additionally introduces kids to the information that mainstream media principally ignores. “For most adults, news translates to politics. That’s a shame. There are so much else happening in science, history, arts, space and more. It’s as if adults are only concerned about politics and the markets.”

The podcast, Lyndee hopes, can act as a groundwork for accountable journalism. “People are so turned off from what real news is. How do we spot fake news and misinformation? I think teenagers, who are increasingly using social media, should be taught this in school, perhaps as a part of their civics class.” Leela and Newsy Jaccuzi’s younger information correspondents are already studying this.

Some of those kids may go on to turn out to be journalists. But Leela, as of now, has different plans. “I want to be a space scientist for NASA.” It is probably a good concept to get away from the mounting issues on this planet and head to outer area. “Sometimes I get scared of what’s gonna happen, reading about the glaciers melting and all that.”

The future won’t appear optimistic. But as Lyndee says, “There is no running away from bad news. We need to understand the problems first if we are to get anywhere near solving them.”

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