Will she become Britain’s brainiest youngster?

Indian-origin girl Rhea among child geniuses on British TV show

India At Large staff

Do you know what xerophthalmia means and can you spell it? Without using a calculator, can you work out the answer to 24 + 57 + 163, divided by 4 X 5? The child prodigy Rhea can, and she is only nine.

Child Genius – a British TV show in which children compete with each other for the crown of the brainiest among them all has a special contestant this season. Rhea, who is of Indian origin, will be competing with 15 other kids on the show, which has challenges such as memorising 155 UK train stations. The series kicked off on Channel 4 last week.

As per The Sunday Times, Rhea has been preparing for this challenge on TV by studying 10 hours a day. Also as a warm-up exercise before the contest she beat 8,000 children to earn a national art prize. “Doing Child Genius was probably the most incredible experience of my life. It was tense at times but it was incredible. I have made friends with some of the children,” Rhea told the newspaper.

Her driving force is her mother Sonal who went to university at 16, and believes that Rhea will do well on the show. She shoots down suggestions that such shows put undue pressure on young kids. “The school did not have a programme for gifted kids, so they designed one. Now she reads GCSE-level books for stimulation. We are starting to get advice on her taking GCSEs early,” said Sonal.

“Rhea loved doing it. The show gives them a chance to be with kids like them, to be in that room and feel normal,” she added.

For those of you who are unaware of what Child Genius is, it is a brain quest between 20 incredible minds aged 8 to 12 years. A short series of five episodes revolves around the lives of children and their families, exploring ways by which parent raise their ‘gifted children’.


Rhea with parents Anish and Sonal: she has been studying for up to 10 hours a day;

Pic courtesy: Stephen Wells/www.thetimes.co.uk



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