There’s much chatter around the facts of our current education system: pioneered in the industrial age; designed to teach children to sit still for factory work and in more recent years, to enable them to pass a series of tests against which their success (and the success of the whole system) will be judged.
Whatever you think of this current system, love it or hate it, it’s hard to deny that even the most successful schools struggle to provide future-proof education for this generation.The future is unpredictable, ever changing and very different to the one the present structure was designed to meet the needs of. So, what will this generation need to be able to tackle the dilemmas they’ll meet, to live the life that will exist in 20, 40, even 60 years from now?
In my mind, the key to education for this generation is providing them with the skills they need, rather than just the facts. Now, don’t get me wrong, facts are essential in some aspects of preparing children for adulthood, for example when learning about culture and what has the made the world the way it is today, but facts should not be the centerpiece of our education system. Skills, however, are the tools needed for everyday life: analysis, problem-solving, communication and much more. Skills can be transferred from one area of our lives to another and once learnt are not often forgotten.
So, rather than chattering about where our education system is at and why, let’s talk about where education for this generation should be going. Imagine with me an education system that enables this generation to become initiators, to be adaptable, to communicate well, to be creative problem-solvers, community-builders, high-level thinkers and innovators…and that’s just for a start.