We've got the experts from GIIS to share with us the latest education trends, and what you can expect in the future of education for our kids.
The world we’re living in is changing faster than ever. As such, it’s only natural that the education sector adapts to this shift. It’s safe to say that our children’s learning experience will be significantly different from the one we’re familiar with. So what can families expect from the future of education?
This was precisely what we discussed in our recent webinar, Education trends, technology and soft skills: What parents need to know about the future of education. Not only did our panellists from Global Indian International School (GIIS) share about the role of technology in education and how to develop our children’s soft skills at home, we also got to hear a first-hand account of a student who’s experiencing these new changes in education!
Got a burning question and need the answer? Jump to the video section that’s relevant for you!
Speaker introductions – 1.08
What the future of education looks like – 5.36
Why is tech-enabled learning so important? – 13.46
How do schools handle screen time? – 21.20
A student’s perspective of tech-enabled learning – 23.55
The types of soft skills and how they’re taught in schools – 27.50
Soft skills vs academics: Complementary or competing? – 31.08
How parents can support the development of soft skills at home – 34.03
A student’s perspective of learning soft skills at GIIS – 38.48
Final thoughts from panellists – 41.41
Q & A – 46.33
Together with our panellists from Global Indian International School (GIIS), this webinar will touch on the latest education trends, including tech-enabled learning as well as soft skills. Find out all you need to know about the role of technology in education, what schools are doing to achieve screen time balance, and how we can develop our children’s soft skills at home. You’ll also get to hear a first-hand account of a student who’s experiencing these new changes in education!
Posted by HoneyKids Asia on Tuesday, October 11, 2022
What does the future of education look like: TOP INSIGHTS FROM THE EXPERTS
1. Technology as an enabler
We all know technology is advancing rapidly, and almost every field has been influenced by the changes in technology – the education industry is no exception. The most important advantage of technology is that it enables more personalised learning, that is, “anytime, anywhere, and anything learning”. Concepts can be learnt using a gamification approach, which incentivises students to try new things. Students today, who are digital natives, are able to extend their learning beyond prescribed books and curriculum because of the availability of appropriate technology at their disposal. However, it’s important to note that good teaching and learning will always be the same – technology can never substitute the benefits that a teacher brings to the classroom, although it facilitates diverse learning experiences and enhances students’ learning outcomes.
2. Learning how to think and apply what is learnt are critical skills for students of the future
With the massive changes in the world economy that’s accelerated by the pandemic, the days of “a job for life” are over. So what does this mean for students? It means they have to be prepared to face an unknown future. This is where creative thinking and problem-solving skills come into play. The most critical aspect of school has to be training students with skills and the ability to think through situations and emerge with appropriate solutions. Our children will encounter issues or problems that may not even be known today. In order to address these, they should have the ability to clearly articulate what they see as an issue before coming up with a solution. They have to learn to understand and gauge what the real problem is, take into consideration different points of view, have the ability to listen empathetically, and most importantly, work with others because most problems these days cannot be solved in isolation. Hence communication, teamwork with empathy, and collaboration with people of different backgrounds and perspectives is a vital skill.
3. Independent learners acquire collaborative and critical thinking skills at a young age
The connections that students make with real life, the dispositions they develop to cooperate, collaborate and be lifelong learners, as well as the development of skills that will make them independent learners, should all be built when children are young. During the pandemic, students’ anxiety levels, their social skills, and also their self-management skills (e.g. eating and taking care of themselves) were compromised. They needed support with self-regulation, focus, and social skills after the restrictions were lifted. As normalcy started to set in, everyone was seeking more engagement and contact. Students could start engaging in play, hold events and experiences where they interacted with a wide group of their peers. This helped with their re-socialisation, and the engaging activities and interaction have had a very positive effect on both their mood, learning, and as a result, their social skills.
4. Soft skills are the things that will help children adapt to change
As the pace of technology and the skills required are evolving, it’s almost impossible to keep up – you can only try. The hard skills demanded in the future will look completely different from the skills acquired today. However, it’s the soft skills – communication, teamwork, critical thinking, and more – which will help individuals adapt to this change. These skills are built outside – not only within – the classrooms. Students like Siya had the opportunity to develop these through exposure to a variety of competitions, challenges, and events in GIIS. An example is Siya’s role as lead organiser of a TEDxYouth event in GIIS. She had to communicate with several professionals and lead a team of 18 in organising the event. These required effective communication, collaboration, and interpersonal skills. This in turn was a key reason that later enabled her to secure an internship position in a multinational company.
5. Parents are their child’s best role models
Building resilience and a sense of self worth in children at home can be as simple as:
- Listening, speaking with the child, and counselling them when necessary;
- Engaging in outdoor activities and other meaningful activities, e.g. volunteering as a family;
- Doing certain mindfulness exercises for self-regulation;
- Working on short projects that involve the child’s interests
Parents also need to be good role models of respectful communication, cooperation, and certain social etiquettes, so that students imbibe these skills and dispositions.
What does the future of education look like: YOUR QUESTIONS, ANSWERED!
1. How can parents help prepare their children for the future?
Melissa: You can start by creating an atmosphere at home to allow children the freedom of choice and decision making, as well as to explore different activities and interests. If they fail, you should be there as their support and cushion. You can also demonstrate curiosity yourself and make them curious about the world around them. Finally, curate meaningful literature, information, and also events that can prepare them for the future.
Manju: The future is here; you have to start with doing right by children in the here and now. This requires them to know how to learn – i.e. dispositions such as independence, self-sufficiency, confidence, and skills to become learners (research, reading, writing, thinking, as well as managing time, resources and people etc.). This is followed by the traits we develop in them: grit, resilience, and a growth mindset. All of these are critical because not giving up in the face of challenges is so important.
2. What technology – hardware and software – do schools use?
Manju: At GIIS, we use Duolingo for language learning, Epic, Padlet, Google Classroom, Seesaw, Story Park, AR & VR, smart TVs, document cameras, Zoom, Minecraft, and Scratch for coding, just to name a few.
A big thank you to our panellists, Melissa Maria, Manju Nair, and Siya from GIIS…
Ms. Melissa Maria is the Senior Principal at GIIS SMART campus, Punggol and a leader in advocating quality education. With over 25 years of experience in the education field, as a teacher and subsequently in educational leadership positions, she has been at the forefront of introducing new ideas and methodologies to education. She strongly believes that values are an integral part of becoming a global citizen. Ms. Maria is the City Coordinator for Singapore, selected by the CBSE Board for Grade 10 and 12 exams, managing two other international schools besides GIIS. With numerous achievements sprinkled across her distinguished career, she has been recognised for her efforts as a Mindef volunteer by the Singapore government. She serves as a volunteer on Mindef’s Advisory Council on Community Relations in Defence. Outside of work, she is an avid traveller and an animal lover.
Ms. Manju Nair is a doctoral candidate with the University of Bath. Her research interests include leadership, inclusion, and multilingualism under the overarching practices and principles of progressive education. As a lecturer and pedagogical leader she has inspired and groomed countless numbers of teachers. As an advocate for ‘student-centred pedagogies’, she has established time and again that it leads to the best outcome for students. She is the IB PYP Coordinator at GIIS SMART campus, the current co-chair of the Singapore Malaysia PYP Coordinators network and has been a speaker at the World Forum for Early Care and Education, as well as at an IB regional conference. Manju is a certified Concept Based Curriculum and Instruction trainer and presenter. She is also an IB Educator Network Programme Leader for school evaluation visits. Outside of work, she enjoys reading, yoga & meditation, baking, painting and traveling.
Siya is a IB Diploma Programme Year 2 student at GIIS and a recipient of the prestigious Global Citizen Scholarship. Her interests primarily lie in Economics, Politics, and Technology. She has co-founded and presided as the Editor of a youth-based magazine around similar themes. Siya participated in the ICDL Asia Digital Challenge for Secondary students earlier this year, which is geared towards gaining practical digital skills required for professional work in the marketplace today and in the future. In the Emerging technology track of Cloud computing, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and the Internet of Things, Siya placed 1st in the International (Grand Final) round. Siya has always been interested in increasing her knowledge across different fields. She has been involved in social work and volunteering, keen to recognize her privilege and bridge the equity gap.
This post is in partnership with Global Indian International School.