Marian Shields Robinson didn’t want to move to Washington, D.C. when her daughter, Michelle Obama, became First Lady in 2009. But her grandchildren, Sasha and Malia, were only seven and ten, and Marian was worried about them, she said in a recent interview with Gayle King of CBS This Morning.
Kids need love. Grandparents are good at giving it. That’s why an army of them is being recruited to serve in the public schools of Syracuse, New York, where too many students have been getting suspended and too few have been graduating.
Grandparents matter in profound, enduring, and sometimes unexpected ways. That’s what I learned from these recordings, which were made by three American families for the oral history project StoryCorps.
The legendary anthropologist Margaret Mead was homeschooled for most of her childhood by her grandmother, an iconoclast who rejected rote instruction as “stultifying” and emphasized learning by doing instead.