For me, Teaching isn’t just about learning the curriculum- it’s about teaching life skills. A life skill is something that can actually enrich the quality of your life. The purpose of education is to stimulate student’s mind and give them true life skills that teach them new ways of thinking.
When I was at school, I remember there was one teacher who always used to say one thing-‘You are where you are because of the decisions you make’. If we can get it across to couple of students, then that’s going to substantially change their life for the better.
In today’s busy world, it seems like we’re on the fast track to the workforce. First comes high school, then college, then the real world- each step prepares us for the next. But teens often wonder, “When am I ever going to use this information again?”
I’ve come to realize that being “academic” doesn’t tell you much about yourself. It tells you you’re good at school, which is fine if you plan to spend your life in academia, but very few of students do. It doesn’t indicate whether or not you’ll be successful in your marriage, raising kids, managing your money, or giving back to your community, being a good friend, understanding the importance of teamwork skills in work and good decision making skills. Besides academics these skills are important in life. School should be a place where kids can discover what they are passionate about, what truly sets their hearts and souls on fire. Above all, they should leave school knowing what they are good at.
I believe that educators should take a closer look at the curriculums and revise them to include more life skills that will actually benefit students for years to come. By the time most teens graduate high school, they know how to find the length of an arc in a circle but are dumbfounded when asked to file a tax return. And while others have mastered various levels of arithmetic, they still find themselves unable to manage a chequebook.
Yes, academic is important. English, Math, History, Science etc. are crucial for a well- rounded education, but not all skills can be taught with a textbook. It’s time to reevaluate what our kids learn in the classroom.
Primary Facilitator, International Centre for Excellence