The world keeps changing all the time. Twenty years ago, no one could have predicted how much technology would become such an integral part of our daily lives. Did we know that the world wide web will move from the fringes of our lifestyles to being our mainline? Nothing we taught or were taught in schools then prepared us for these wide-ranging changes. And who knows what the future will hold for the world?
In the face of such drastic changes, what can we really teach our children today to prepare them for tomorrow? The best thing we can do is to train them in skills that would help them cope with whatever changes the future may throw at them. These valuable skills would make children adapt or get used to unexpected developments rather than leaving them stumped and feeling out-of-depth.
Children need to learn how to analyze a problem and come up with solutions for it. They should be able to look at it from several angles and arrive at the best way to tackle it. Teachers can develop this trait by giving them hypothetical or real-life situations to think about and provide answers. Students need to be shown that there is more than one solution to any problem and work out the best course of action.
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Not everyone will get to be a leader in life. This is perfectly fine. In most life situations, people need to work in collaboration with others in achieving a common goal. Hence, teaching children to work within a team is crucial. Instead of merely splitting tasks of a project and allocating them, teach them to think in terms of roles – a manager, a communicator or an organizer. They do not always have to take the same role every time too. A manager today can become the organizer the next. This role changing drags the children out of their safe, comfort zones and makes them more adventurous and amenable to change.
Effective oral and written communication skills will never go out of demand. Children should be taught to speak and write correctly and to express thoughts clearly and legibly. However good they are in their jobs, without good communication skills, they would be severely handicapped. They should learn how to read and listen effectively too since communication is a two-way process.
With the information explosion on the internet, it is very easy to find anything about everything in the world. But how do you know the accuracy and correctness of the data? How do you differentiate better the good information from the bad? The only way kids are going to be able to do that is if they possess the skills to analyze the data critically and objectively and decide for themselves if it is true. They could be wrong too. But will learn from the experience and know what to look for in the future.
These skills are not acquired overnight. Parents and teachers need to carefully cultivate them in children with some creative thinking and innovative methods. Once done, there is nothing that can faze your children in the future.