What could the long stop due to the crown-virus emergency mean for education?
Stopping could be what the industry needed to rethink how we educate and question what we need to teach and what we are preparing our students for.
Most of the students in educational institutions today come from generation Z, a generation that has grown up in a truly globalized world. This generation (under 25 years) will likely reflect on their education following a truly global pandemic, with many facing cancelled exams, sporting events and even graduation.
This generation is defined by technology and expresses itself through apps such as Messenger, Snapchat and WhatsApp. Still, it is also a generation that sees the power to work collaboratively the way to solve the most significant challenges in the world: climate change and mental greeting are at the top of their list.
Generation Alpha, the children of millennials, is the most racially diverse generation in the world, and one in which technology is simply an extension of its consciousness and identity, with social media as a lifestyle. To date, they are perhaps unaware of the impact of the global pandemic on their education.
The world of education, therefore, wonders what students should prepare for in the future. According to a World Economic Forum report, 65% of elementary school children today will work in types of jobs that don’t exist yet.
Let’s see how education must change to be able to better prepare young students for what the future might hold:
- Educating citizens in an interconnected world: COVID-19 has confirmed how globally interconnected we are.
- Redefine the role of the educator: the role of educators will have to move towards facilitating the development of young people as contributing members of society. Resilience and adaptability will be crucial for the next generations who enter the job.
- Teach the necessary life skills for the future: some of the essential skills that employers will seek will be creativity, communication and collaboration, along with empathy and emotional intelligence.
- Unlocking technology to offer education: educators around the world are experimenting with new possibilities of doing things differently and with greater flexibility with consequent potential benefits related to access to education for students across the globe.
More importantly, we hope that for Generation Z, Alpha and the generations to come, these experiences of isolation and remote learning away from their peers, teachers and classrooms serve as a cautious reminder of the importance of our human need for social direct interaction.