Giving Compass' Take:

• Rachelle Dene Poth explains that educators can foster conditions and learning environments that are conducive to building useful skill sets for the future workforce. 

• Poth mentions that project-based learning, artificial intelligence, maker education, and more will all help students prepare for the future. What about the schools that do not have access to newer technology, or the capacity to build new learning curricula?

• Read about how student choice will prepare kids for the future.

Although we cannot predict with certainty the types of jobs that will exist in the future, we know that today’s students will need a variety of skills, “21st century skills.” However, these are skills that our students need today.

Knowing this, we must ask ourselves what are the best ways to provide all students with ​authentic​, ​​​unique​,​ and innovative learning experiences that will foster the development of these essential skills? How can we prepare students for jobs which may not exist yet in our ever-changing world?

I think that these conditions should be fostered in the learning environment we create for and co-design with our students. There are different school structures, programs, and teaching strategies that would align well with these essential conditions and provide students with the right preparation and skills for the future, now.

  1. Project-based learning. With project-based learning (PBL), students ​develop the skills to work independently or collaboratively, to come up with an essential question that does not have an easily found or specific answer, and which engages students in sustained inquiry.
  2.  Artificial intelligence. Several schools in the country are now offering courses in AI. In Pittsburgh, the Montour School District launched the country’s first middle-school AI program in 2018.
  3. Maker education and coding. There are many ways students can develop skills for the future in coursework related to a STEAM curriculum or courses focused on coding.
  4. Place-based learning. According to a recent Getting Smart post, place-based learning is “anytime, anywhere learning that leverages the power of place, and not just the power of technology, to personalize learning.
  5. Entrepreneurial skills and courses​. In learning more about the gig economy and the skills that students need for the future, a key takeaway was that students need to be able to quickly adapt to a changing work landscape.

Read the full article about how do we prepare our students by Rachelle Dene Poth at Getting Smart.