Education has always played a large role in the development of children. It will always do the same in the future. It might look different one day, just as it looked different 100 years ago.
100 years ago was a world of no widespread electronics. Students did not have graphics calculators for advanced math subjects. They did not even have basic calculators! What did they do? Are we smarter than them? The answer to that is yes and no. We are smarter as a whole because our technology is superior to our technology from 100 years ago. However, we cannot say we are smarter because they back then excelled in the best way they could.
More and more, computers are finding their way into the classroom. When I was a child, the only computers in school were in the “computer room” where we learned typing. I loved Mario Teaches Typing! Games like that made it fun for me to learn to type. I don’t even know what games they have today, but I’m sure they are something similar.
Another game I played was called Math Blaster. I was a full action game based on space. The catch was that to win, the gamer would need to learn math! To get to the next level, the gamer would need to answer math problems to defeat the enemy. There were also different levels of Math Blaster. There were the basic math game, the algebra game, and upwards in math difficulty.
As we become smarter as a society we will develop different methods of education. These methods would be designed to be better than the methods used in times recent past. They will be meant to be a step up and a path to the future of education. We will never stop this constant mission of improvement in education just as we continue to excel in other areas of life.
Innovation and creativity are the most common words which are heard frequently in the field of high school education. One of the most challenging aspects for the teacher is to capture the attention of students and present the ideas in such a way that it stays in their mind even when they have left the classroom. Reimers-Hild and King (2009) said that the components of innovation should be fun, creative, diverse, collaborative, and intuitive.
First and foremost, you should take baby steps to accomplish the goal, but there should always be support and encouragement so that it becomes easy to achieve it. Learn to take risks and even when you “fail”, it will be your fuel to continue the process. If some strategy is not working, you can learn from it, rectify where it is required and try again. Here are some of the key strategies to encourage creativity and innovation in students:-
#1 ACTIVE LEARNING
Always make use of the active learning techniques to engage students, encourage creativity and innovation among students. You may also try games or songs, maps to teach a concept to student. What you should remember is that “Learning will always happen in a kind of environment where they will think and won’t escape”.
Here’s a list of the practical ideas to incorporate more active learning into your teaching techniques:-
Encourage interaction among peers that will help them to participate in all the activities together. It will also develop skills to solve the problems. Every time you ask a question, you will see many hands up in the class.
Create excellent opportunities for hands-on field work – it will take them out from their comfort zone and they will develop adaptability skills.
Go for a roundtable discussion.
Write questions on the board. Let the students answer the questions. What kind of answers they’re giving? Is it logical?
Let them create questions for the next exam.
#2 COMMUNITY BUILDING
Creating a reliable and trustworthy environment is one of the most critical components of encouraging creativity and innovation among students. It’s very important for the teachers to create an environment of trust where students get the opportunity to voice their opinion. Here are some more ideas to build community:-
Encourage spontaneous interactions. For instance, if there is any debate or discussion going on, let students speak their mind without sharing any feedback with them. In case, if the discussion is not going in the right way, you can always interfere and guide them.
Create some informal class opportunities; for instance, give some time to let the students know each other. It can either happen through small group discussion or any other games, hands-on activities during the class. Most of the times, these informal opportunities help the students to bond with each other.
Learn each and every student’s name. You should also ensure that everyone in the class should know each and everyone’s name. It will be a great thing if you can arrange chairs in a circle so that everyone can see each other.
Simmons (2012) also discussed the importance of faculty discussions in the staff room. They should share their ideas and challenges which they face on a daily basis. These kinds of conversations not only help you to learn new teaching strategies, but you will also develop the confidence to take risks.
#4 TAKE RISKS
To create a creative and innovative environment, it is very important to take risks. Have a look at the following strategies shared by most of the teachers and administrators:-
Create a safe environment that encourages the risk taking process.
Explore and experiment with new ideas.
Teach them to make mistakes, accept the same and rectify it.
Let the children get out of their comfort zone.
Forget everything at the end of the session and start new.
Speak to the other teachers and ask about what worked, and what didn’t.
#5 AUDIO AND VIDEO TOOLS
To make the process of teaching more effective, add audio-visual materials in the sessions. Use movies and pictography materials to teach students. Info graphics, mind mapping and brain mapping tools can grow and develop a student’s imagination. It not only develops their listening abilities, but they will also get a good understanding of the concept. For instance, you can teach history through small videos. There are many other school apps that can create slideshows and presentations.
Remember Matt Damon’s character in GOOD WILL HUNTING which said, “You wasted $150,000 on an education you could have got a buck fifty in late charges at the public library”. Information can be accessed anywhere and it won’t cost you a lot of money.
There are many online sources which are offering the university classes for free and you can also visit the local library which is a source of information. Look for the other alternative options to education. Talk to people. Listen what they say, how they eat, where they go, what they do and it will be more productive for you than going to college.
#4 What Success Really Requires?
For most of the students, college is the only place where they can figure out the things easily. Needless to mention, this is the place where personal growth and social learning takes place- but this is something which commonly happens at your age. And if you get out of your comfort zone, challenge yourself and talk to new people, it will happen. It’s a guarantee.
What you exactly need to be successful is very simple. You just need to find out what you love- where you’ll always excel. Then look for an easy and reasonable way to be the best at it, or you can also try to be the best at a particular part.
You may love playing tennis but not enough to be the Wimbledon Champion. That’s absolutely fine. However, you can be a great instructor that offers you with good job opportunities. It assures you with excellent monetary benefits. Success becomes easy when you choose something which you love doing. No one will ask for a tennis degree if you’re playing well.
You are already aware that whether your career- even when it’s not so popular-will need a degree or not. Most of the times, it doesn’t. If that’s the scenario, you should not spend your valuable four (or more) years in taking courses that will cost a lot of money and won’t offer any special benefit.
A degree may not be so important, and a four-year college start can just motivate you to find success.
One of the most frequently asked questions among young people is this – Do You Need A College Degree?
A: Of course. You need a degree to get a job.
B: No. Not really.
Needless to mention, when you have zero experience, a degree will only help you let the world know who you are, what you did, and how you deserve to get a job after everything. Isn’t it?
When you don’t have a degree or let’s say you are degree less and other 50 people are applying for the post of theatre teacher in a private school, then the people with a postgraduate degree will definitely get a place at the top if compared with the ones who have an undergraduate degree.
What will you do? What will be your position? However, it doesn’t mean that you need a degree. What you probably need is a way to build your brand- and work hard to achieve your dreams.
#1 Analyze the statistics
Just do a thorough research on the data of college degrees, and it may become easy for you to make the right choice. For instance, it was mentioned in the survey by ECONOMY POLICY INSTITUTE that college graduates who had degrees earned more than the non-college graduates. It’s 2017. Things have changed. Don’t worry (if you don’t have a degree).
There’s no denying that students with a college degree will definitely get better job opportunities. After all, they have worked hard, invested their valuable time and energy- okay, let’s say their parent’s money- and if they understand the value of their money or are a little ambitious, they will get an entry-level job.
Here’s what the statistics didn’t reveal: You can also make great connections in the industry without spending a hefty amount of money on college education. The most important word here is “CONNECTIONS”. You need to connect with the right people at the right time. Most of the times, ambition is always there. You just need to nurture it or probably need someone who can guide you.
When you’re an 18-year-old kid, you won’t be able to create a “success plan”, so you have to do what your parents and well-wishers encourage, or something your best friend is doing and what most of the people in the society have done for years. But, there are many other options which you can explore.
#2 College Won’t Teach HOW TO THINK
Each and every student reads the same book in the college and this is being taught by someone who has never worked in the industry practice. This is what mostly happening in all the colleges. A classroom is a place where students are getting the same information from the professor which they can easily find in a textbook or an online study portal.
There are few colleges which are exceptions to the rule and encourage “CRITICAL THINKING”. At college, you’ll get the opportunity to meet new people with different backgrounds and lifestyles who will challenge your approach to life. But college is not the only place where you’ll get such an environment. You can also meet them in your neighborhood or may be the nearest coffee shop which will let you know things which are not taught in the college.
Learners Learn at Each And Every Phase of Life- That’s What Makes Them Successful
Colleges are theoretical and their approach is not real. The biggest problem is that there is no change in their approach. For many decades, Americans have assumed that they need a bachelor degree to get a job. However, it’s not always true.
Things have started changing.
Nowadays, the most important thing you need is the right skills to get a job, not a certificate which won’t ensure whether are eligible for the job. A bachelor’s degree is not a bad idea, but you can also be successful in America without a college degree.
Education is a necessity regardless of race, creed, religion, or color. Education is important all around the world and it is also important to teach facts – not misconstrued arguments or leanings. We pride ourselves in being educators of truth and equality. By providing valuable education materials and teachings worldwide, we can better understand ourselves and our world. We will be publishing weekly on the best ways to educate yourself and your people. Contact us if you would like to contribute articles.