This is a guestpost by Socialy Tech.
Most of us believe that children should be taught skills that they will need to use in the future.
The only problem is that no one knows what the future holds, and hence it becomes very difficult to accurately predict the skills that the student might need.
The world is not exactly like we imagined it would be a decade back. The problems and the technologies present now must have been extremely difficult to predict at that time.
So how do you prepare children for things that you can’t think of right now?
Businesses face the same problem when planning for the future, so it’s worth reading this quote from Jeff Bezos of Amazon.
We need to figure out the things that will not change rather than guess the skills that we need to teach. This is important because the resources we have are limited and we have to find the best way to make optimal use of those resources.
Skills You Need To Acquire For The Future
Some skills will be as useful tomorrow as they will be after a decade. Those are the skills that we need to prioritize. Some examples of those skills are:
We are not going anywhere. We will always need to learn how to work with each other for survival, sustenance, and progress – that is why teaching this skill from a young age will ensure they can live in any society.
When individuals work together, processes and goals begin to align. With collaboration, we can work toward a common goal.
Creativity and change go hand-in-hand. The world changes faster than we can imagine, so it is important to learn how to adapt to changing situations.
Creativity in thought will help children jump over many hurdles that we can’t imagine right now. Encourage them with artsy activities such as painting, crafting, cooking classes – the list goes on!
Creativity is an important part of any person’s life, and there are many ways to boost creativity.
With the internet at your fingertips, you have a plethora of platforms that can provide ideas for creative projects, whether it be designing flyers or coming up with new recipes.
For example, you can check the online flyer maker tools which provide flyers, posters and other impressive designs for art classes.
Empathy is more of a ‘how to be a good person’ skill. It is the ability to see things from another person’s perspective and feel their feelings.
Empathy is a skill that’s needed in any given society. It can be developed with practice as the child grows up and learns how to best use their own empathy for others with kindness, thoughtfulness, and consideration.
Learning empathy can start early on by practicing being empathetic towards others or taking responsibility for one’s actions when they cause someone else harm (e.g., apologizing).
Learning new things is one of the most important parts of life because it helps us to be more creative and resourceful. If you enjoy learning, the world is full of opportunities for you.
Asking for feedback or reflecting on past work and then improving yourself based on it is a skill for the ages. It will be helpful irrespective of which country, world or century you live in.
Critical Thinking and Problem-Solving
Critical thinking is the ability to analyze and evaluate information, applying logical processes.
Problem-solving involves a step-by-step process that identifies the problem, determines the factors involved and possible solutions, weighs these options against one another, and then chooses an appropriate solution.
The availability of collated data seems to only be increasing. With the advent of Big Data, we can see that it will become increasingly important for people to use this information to solve problems within their respective fields.
Given the possibilities for artificial intelligence in society — such as driverless cars or health monitoring systems —it is vital that people understand how this technology can affect their lives.
Understanding how computers and other technologies can affect your life will allow you to prepare for your future career and make good decisions about which skills are important.
You can even do things to help develop the technology that you will be using.
Learning about AI can help people understand how this technology could affect their future lives. It can also make them more desirable employees at companies where artificial intelligence might be incorporated into products or services.
Even if you are not fluent in computer language, understanding how this technology works and its possible implications for your life will still be beneficial.
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This is most definitely not an exhaustive list.
The idea is not to get the perfect list of skills and then ignore the rest. The idea is to use this strategy to prioritize. This is to let us choose between something long-lasting and something which might be a passing fancy.
Educators can use this to figure out what to teach children in schools. Politicians can use this in figuring out the kind of training that educators should be given.
This in no way means that we should not think about the future. It would be foolish not to do so. It should be given the requisite attention it needs. We have to figure out what is worth putting a lot of energy into.
Developing your skills will make you more marketable because candidates who can bring something different to a role will always look attractive. People who work hard at their careers are also likely to get ahead in their professions; therefore, it is worth putting some effort into acquiring new skills for your life.
In the end, a big part of getting our children to be ready for the future is to teach them how to deal properly with the present.
Are there any other skills that you think will stand the test of time? Let me know in the comments below.
Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.