How do we prepare children for the future of the work?

Future of work

When it comes to the future of work, technology is the future. Industries all around the world will be disrupted as technology continues to develop for the future of work. Every aspect of the workforce is set to change, and the early aspects of this, such as automation, are already being seen today. The question is: How can we help our children prepare for this uncertain future?

Disruption to the Future of work

According to the World Economic Forum, we stand at the brink of a Fourth Industrial Revolution, with change happening at an unprecedented and exponential pace. This revolution is disrupting every industry in every country around the world and will alter the way we live and work forever.  The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) informs us that in the future, millions of jobs may be lost to automation but that new jobs will also emerge. We do not know which jobs will disappear and which will be created. The only certainty for the future of work is uncertainty.  

Students graduating from university will no longer remain in the same profession for life but will instead be employed in the “gig economy”, which will require them to adapt their skills throughout their lives to match the economic demands of the changing world. In order to remain employed, humans will also need to capitalise on the skills and attributes that robots and artificial intelligence cannot replicate. 

The Best Schools will focus of soft skills and learning behaviours

To prepare us for this world, education needs to focus more on the development of “soft skills” and attributes as traditional education, emphasising the transfer of knowledge from teacher to pupil, decreases in relevance.  Schools also need to focus on deeper learning, providing pupils with opportunities to think critically and apply the skills they develop to real-life contexts.  Finally, schools need to empower pupils to take ownership of their learning, increasing motivation and engagement and building initiative, allowing them to take responsibility for their learning and their lives.  

Technology is changing how work is being performed, but this will change the skills and knowledge that are required by employees. Helping our children develop a skillset that matches the future of work can give them a leg up on any competition that they may face in that future.

Develop Coding Skills & Digital Literacy

If there are a couple of skills that will become prominent in the future of work, it’s coding and programming. These skills, and fields, have emerged over the course of the last decade and taken the world by storm. In fact, entire majors have been developed based on coding and programming. There are a number of coding languages that you may consider learning but it may seem difficult to pick just one. Python and JavaScript as two of the best options for prospective students.

Find out more about our Coding training for teachers and support staff in the Early years and Primary schools

These two coding languages are extremely versatile and can be used to handle a number of different jobs. For example, learning what Python is used for will reveal just how many applications the language has. Due to this versatility, adding coding or programming as a skill will help your children be extremely relevant in the future. 

Regardless of the specific language they choose to focus on, there is no future where coding or programming will not be used in day-to-day work. Computer programmers are going to be needed more than ever, as reports from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics show.

Student led and Project-based Active Learning

Other essential skills that young children should be focusing on are critical thinking and problem-solving. Fortunately, learning to code will hone these skills. However, coding alone won’t make your children strong, independent thinkers. To zero in on these skills, pioneering schools around the country are now stressing the importance of hands-on exercises to stimulate children and nurture critical thinking and self-reliance.

Project-based learning fosters independent thought and creativity, shaping students that are able to tackle challenges on their own. This type of learning offers countless other benefits, such as exposing learners to real-world scenarios at an early age. 

In this blog entry, the writer details how she implemented project-based learning in the Spanish class she led. She says it resulted in more student-led learning, with their pupils developing a broader cultural awareness than they would otherwise. In other words, with project-based learning, students come to terms with the importance of struggle in every worthwhile endeavour, and, as a result, are much better prepared for an uncertain future. 

Studying Modern Tech Trends

Truthfully, one of the best ways to determine the skills that will be most applicable to the future of work is to study the trends dominating society today. For example, on the topic of coding, as discussed earlier, rather than focusing on one language, help your children understand the uses for many. Instead of simply learning how to code in one language, strive to teach them the differences between Python vs. JavaScript.

Studying tech trends can give them insights before anyone else even realises what is going on. Focus on the technology that will be most disruptive to industries overall and try to picture how their skills may actually fit in with that technology. From there, they can work to develop their skills in a specific way, instead of focusing too broadly.

Final thoughts on the Future of Work

Unfortunately, there is no guaranteed way to be sure that your children will develop skills applicable to the future of work. All you can do is helping them to develop some new skills that seem to match the tech trends we are currently witnessing today. If you want to learn more about these trends, as well as exciting new careers and the educational paths that can lead your children there, check out jobtraininnghub.com

Future ready learning means focusing on the development of these skills and attributes, replacing traditional learning with a range of new approaches that will provide pupils with the tools they need to be successful, producing curious, engaged, and resilient individuals who are able to take on the challenges of the 21st century and beyond.

Prepare your Pupils for the future of work with our Future Ready Learning INSET.

Available as a in school workshop or Expert-led webinar

JMC INSET Team

Tel: +44208 5314182

Email : enquiries@jmcinset.com

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