I asked a simple question recently: “What do you wish you learned in school?” The responses were wonderful and varied, but there were some common themes I wanted to highlight. Joann McPike, founder of THINK Global School, shared this word cloud made from more than 2,500 responses to the question.
You will notice that very few of the topics are actually taught in most schools at present. Some of the areas that stand out to me include: Finance skills, life skills, emotional intelligence, relationships, time management, leadership, experimental learning, global issues, mental health, coding, nutrition, public speaking and kindness.
As Joann wrote: “We have to overcome the fear of change. We have to start educating our children for LIFE, not to take a test. The whole child, each as individuals with different strengths so they can come together as a collaborative collective filled with confidence, curiosity, open mindedness, compassion and appreciation for one another instead of competition, dogma and exclusion filled with confusion and hopelessness.”
One thing is for sure: The current model of education is outdated. More than ever before, education needs a seismic shift to meet the needs of young people and society in the 21st century. We need to rethink the way we teach and inspire young people and anticipate the skills they’ll need in the future.