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10 Times Kids Stole the Spotlight on Live Television

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YELIM LEE/AFP/Getty Images

The biggest danger to any live broadcast is that anything can happen. Whether it's a dog on a lawn mower or a curious kid who just happens to wander into the shot, it doesn't take much for an unexpected interruption to become the bigger news story.


On March 10, South Korea President Park Geun-hye's removal from office was an important global news story, so the BBC enlisted Professor Robert Kelly of Pusan National University for his analysis of the situation. During the live Skype session, it became clear that Kelly was in his home office when his kids, four-year-old Marion and infant James, came strolling (and rolling) in—followed by Kelly's wife, Kim Jung-A, who made a Kramer-esque entrance. The chaos, coupled with Kelly's low-key embarrassment, turned the video into an instant classic. The memes came quickly, and the children were enshrined in art.

In a follow-up video, Robert and his family explained how the incident came about. Kelly's family was sitting in the living room, watching Robert on live TV. Marion recognized the office and decided to go see her dad, with James following. Kim, who was busy trying to record the interview, lost track of the kids for a moment—which was all it took for the youngest members of the Kelly family to join an ever-growing club of children who took the opportunity to steal the spotlight during live newscasts.


The same week that Marion Kelly became a viral sensation, meteorologist Patrick Ellis of WLBT-TV in Jackson, Mississippi, saw his weather report crashed by a young boy named Houston, who ran into the live forecast because he wanted to be on TV. After presenting his backside to Ellis, Houston was invited to help with the forecast. "Yeah, there are farts everywhere and toots!" he predicted, just before his father grabbed him. In a Facebook video, an amused Ellis explained that he would have let the child continue, but Houston's father—a lawyer who was appearing on a call-in show at the station—removed him from the set.


Dan Daru of FOX31 in Denver was at a farm festival in 2012 when he spotted a young boy named Drew, and decided to make him part of the story. Drew didn't know what to make of the situation, but his face said it all—and then the tears came. Daru got a chance to make it up to the boy when he interviewed Drew and his mother a year later, but Drew has a long memory.


In 2011, Kareen Wynter delivered a report to CNN on Kim Kardashian's wedding to Kris Humphries—but all the audience could see was a boy who wanted to show the world the many faces he could make. Based on his quick exit, we can only imagine that his mother must have given him some serious stink eye.


When an historic flood caused lots of damage in Louisiana last August, local station WAFB was there to cover it live. But in this report, viewers got a floor show in the background when a young boy decided to show off his smooth dance moves for the camera.


In 2014, 15-year-old Brendan Jordan of Summerlin, Nevada, attended the grand opening of the Downtown Summerlin Mall. The teenager was at the front of the crowd when KLAS-TV broadcast a report from the event, and launched into a fierce dance routine when "Applause" by Lady Gaga came on. He stood out so much among the smiling faces of the crowd that the video report went viral overnight. Jordan's father, Chris, helped the teenager parlay his virality into internet stardom. Jordan appeared on numerous talk shows, has modeled for American Apparel, and has more than 265,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel.


After a court hearing in the Aaron Hernandez murder trial in 2013, reporters were awaiting a press briefing—and one teenager, seeing his opportunity for fame, positioned himself in camera range. He didn't have much of a plan, but he knew making faces would make him the talk of his school the next day. (It worked.)


Five-year-old Noah Ritter of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania went to the Wayne County Fair in 2014. He'd never been on live TV before, but made the most of it when Sofia Ojeda of Newswatch 16 interviewed him. Ritter became an internet meme as the Apparently Kid. He also went on The Ellen Show several times and even got a job starring in a TV ad.


Seeing a TV camera at work can be too tempting for some people. An Australian newscaster did a remote broadcast from a mall, but no one cared what he was saying when a young lady with Down syndrome spotted the camera. Her excitement caused the reporter to offer his microphone to her, and she said those words all parents hope to hear when this kind of thing happens: "Hi Mom! Hi Dad!"


Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors was supposed to be in the spotlight in this 2015 NBA post-game interview, but his two-year-old daughter, Riley, wanted to see her dad. Though Stephen had scored 34 points against the Houston Rockets that night, it was Riley who won over the press. Since then, Riley—now four—has become a celebrity in her own right; check out more of her adorable appearances.

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11-Year-Old Creates a Better Way to Test for Lead in Water
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In the wake of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, a Colorado middle schooler has invented a better way to test lead levels in water, as The Cut reports.

Gitanjali Rao, an 11-year-old seventh grader in Lone Tree, Colorado just won the 2017 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, taking home $25,000 for the water-quality testing device she invented, called Tethys.

Rao was inspired to create the device after watching Flint's water crisis unfold over the last few years. In 2014, after the city of Flint cut costs by switching water sources used for its tap water and failed to treat it properly, lead levels in the city's water skyrocketed. By 2015, researchers testing the water found that 40 percent of homes in the city had elevated lead levels in their water, and recommended the state declare Flint's water unsafe for drinking or cooking. In December of that year, the city declared a state of emergency. Researchers have found that the lead-poisoned water resulted in a "horrifyingly large" impact on fetal death rates as well as leading to a Legionnaires' disease outbreak that killed 12 people.

A close-up of the Tethys device

Rao's parents are engineers, and she watched them as they tried to test the lead in their own house, experiencing firsthand how complicated it could be. She spotted news of a cutting-edge technology for detecting hazardous substances on MIT's engineering department website (which she checks regularly just to see "if there's anything new," as ABC News reports) then set to work creating Tethys. The device works with carbon nanotube sensors to detect lead levels faster than other current techniques, sending the results to a smartphone app.

As one of 10 finalists for the Young Scientist Challenge, Rao spent the summer working with a 3M scientist to refine her device, then presented the prototype to a panel of judges from 3M and schools across the country.

The contamination crisis in Flint is still ongoing, and Rao's invention could have a significant impact. In March 2017, Flint officials cautioned that it could be as long as two more years until the city's tap water will be safe enough to drink without filtering. The state of Michigan now plans to replace water pipes leading to 18,000 households by 2020. Until then, residents using water filters could use a device like Tethys to make sure the water they're drinking is safe. Rao plans to put most of the $25,000 prize money back into her project with the hopes of making the device commercially available.

[h/t The Cut]

All images by Andy King, courtesy of the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge.

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Here's How to Turn an IKEA Box Into a Spaceship
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Since IKEA boxes are designed to contain entire furniture items, they could probably fit a small child once they’re emptied of any flat-packed component pieces. This means they have great potential as makeshift forts—or even as play spaceships, according to one of the Swedish furniture brand’s print ads, which was spotted by Design Taxi.

First highlighted by Ads of the World, the advertisement—which was created by Miami Ad School, New York—shows that IKEA is helping customers transform used boxes into build-it-yourself “SPÄCE SHIPS” for children. The company provides play kits, which come with both an instruction manual and cardboard "tools" for tiny builders to wield during the construction process.

As for the furniture boxes themselves, they're emblazoned with the words “You see a box, they see a spaceship." As if you won't be climbing into the completed product along with the kids …

Check out the ad below:

[h/t Design Taxi]


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