What is the need to train teachers to teach 21st century skills?

  • 04 Jan, 2021

According to a recent study, each successive generation is nine points higher in intelligence quotient than its previous generation and the 21st century kids are deemed to be smarter than the previous generations. Let this fact sink in. Let us understand that the kids who were born between the period of 2000- 2010, the ones who are students at today’s schools are smarter and more intelligent than the alumni a school has seen till now. Apart from increased brain capacities and better learning abilities, the intelligence of a 21st century kid has been complemented by the level of technological advancement that has happened over the period between 2000- 2020. The students of today were born just when innovation and technological inventions picked up pace and started developing at a greater rate. From iPads to advanced smartphones and computers, wireless technology to remote communication, the students have been exposed to a higher level of technology since an early age. This has made them digitally literate and technologically advanced from the very start of their lives. The students are more comfortable around technology than their previous generations. As technology has become a necessary portal for skill enhancement these days, an early exposure to technology has helped the students develop their early cognitive and non-cognitive skills as they interact with various forms of media and communication.

The kids today develop their speech and listening abilities faster than the previous generations. An exposure to technology, through smartphones and tablets helps them develop their motor and kinaesthetic skills. Many kids today are seen playing games on smartphones, while these can be addictive for the kids, the right games help the kids develop their visual skills, audio and pattern identification skills which prepares them for a school career from an early age.

Nowadays, the education of a student starts from an earlier age than other generations as parents decide to go for smart parenting and use a blended learning method which uses various technological aids to help the kids enhance their intelligence and their observational and learning skills. It is important to understand that literacy as a whole increase over generations along with other intelligences. This means that the parent generation of this generation of students has a high level of literacy which helps them learn a lot of things at home and prepares them for a school career in a better way. Where previous generations depended on the school to learn everything from scratch, the present generation enters schools as a completely aware and prepared group of students. This means that the students who are currently in school actually are smart and advanced when compared to other generations at their age. This means that schools of today need to take an equally advanced approach to teaching and learning which is better adapted to the students’ learning needs and capacities. SAI International School recognises the fact that today’s generation has advanced learning needs and a well of curiosity that can only be satisfied if the teachers who teach them are well trained and upskilled in tandem with the 21st century skill set the students need to learn.

Therefore, SAI International School as well as its residential wing, the SAI International Residential School puts emphasis on the need to train its teachers in various areas of teaching regularly. As SAI International School is a globally renowned school with an internationally acclaimed curriculum and a benchmark created in learning, it is the SAI International school faculty’s responsibility that they are upskilled and well versed with the 21st century teaching techniques needed to teach the SAIoneers at school.

For example, the faculty at SAI International School are trained by the British Council as trainers and oral examiners which helps them train the students better in the English language. The SAI International School is a Cambridge English Examination Preparation Centre and prepares the students in Cambridge English which can be an advantage for the students when they plan to enter the foreign education system for higher studies.

Apart from being trained under the British Council, the teachers and faculty members are part of regular training sessions involving education experts who help them learn new skills of teaching and interacting with the students. The 21st Century classroom is a mix of blended learning, multisensory learning and experiential learning which engages a student’ mind and helps him learn and adapt important skills through various activities. The objective of this mode of teaching and learning is to not only help students learn but retain the knowledge and skill imparted to them. Along with the fact that the students are smarter than the previous generation of students, it is also true that today’s students have a short attention span which means that it is important to devise teaching techniques that hold their attention and help them learn. The teachers cannot achieve this via rote learning that focuses on mugging up information and random cramming done for examination. Therefore, there is a need to train the teachers so that they are able to take alternative approaches to teaching which suits the students’ learning needs. At SAI International School, we understand that the school is a melting pot of education that shapes and moulds students and the primary focus should always be on educating them in the best way possible. As teachers, the faculty needs to constantly challenge itself and learn new skills, only then can they help their students learn the 21st century way. If the teaching methods are outdated while the students being taught are up to date and technologically, emotionally and mentally advanced, a gap in education will soon develop and schools will fail at their primary objective of creating able, knowledgeable and well adapted citizens of the country. SAI International School is committed to create global leaders and it encourages its teachers to stay in touch with the most relevant 21st century skills that the students need to excel in their life ahead.