During the recent Economic Forum in Davos, political, business and social leaders from nearly all over the world met to discuss the opportunities and challenges we are facing. One of the speakers, the Chinese philanthropist, entrepreneur and founder of Alibaba Group, Jack Ma, pointed out that only by changing our education system, can we prepare our children to compete with machines. Yes, machines – robots could replace as many as 800,000,000 jobs by 2030.
Ma pointed out, that if we don’t change the way we teach, we will be in trouble soon. Currently we use 200 years old knowledge-based teaching methods, while the machines are getting smarter and smarter. Teachers must stop teaching knowledge; instead, they have to teach something unique, something that machines can never possess – soft skills and values such as independent thinking, teamwork and compassion. We should teach our kids sports, music, painting, arts. We need to make sure humans remain different from machines.
To that goal, Dr. Tony Wagner, Co-director of Harvard’s Change Leadership Group, lists seven essential skills children need to learn to be adaptable, become fast learners and be able to navigate through life’s challenges. Those are: critical thinking and problem solving, collaboration and leading by influence, agility and adaptability, initiative and entrepreneurialism, communication skills, assessing and analyzing information and curiosity and imagination.
Those skills will help our children the world of the future. Are your children already learning the right skills to succeed?
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