We assisted to the conference held by Richard Gerver at SIMO and found it very interesting and inspiring.
It is always a boost to listen to experts who, with this deep enthusiasm and knowledge of educational issues, share with the rest of us what they observe around them and make reflections on what is currently happening in our society and on what will probably happen in the future.
His lecture offers very valuable alternatives to solve current problems and gives us the keys to put the foundations to be prepared for the future to come. His reflections are of paramount importance to our society and raise issues in which we, Elesapiens, have a very special interest.
Richard Gerver starts his lecture by questioning in an innovative, revolutionary way, an educational system that is currently failing, and goes on explaining the reason of this failure and why he feels that we, as a society, are not reacting in time. He reflects on the changes that need to be implemented to educate people as useful, dignified, satisfied citizens which contribute to the community in which they live.
As main conclusions of this lecture we can highlight these:
- Today’s education should focus on the acquisition by students of interpersonal skills, social skills. Education should have as aim that individuals develop fully as such, and are capable of interacting with other individuals.
The concept of humanity, understanding this term as an ability to understand other human beings and work with them in a collaborative way, will be the basis of our future world. Technology will be just a tool.
- The most important teaching will be to train an individual to be able to adapt to change.
- The lack of connection between an individual’s education and his professional performance within a society is a source of frustration, and generates aggression against the system. We have to train individuals to be able to contribute to the society in which they live and work, this being a source of satisfaction, both for the individual and for the collectivity.
And so the moral duty of those who rule us is to prepare the new generations for the challenges of the future.
- Numeric and alphabetic literacy are important, and must doubtless kept on being taught, but we mustchange the way we are transmitting this knowledge.
This society requires people who invent, innovate, and create. We need students able of thinking by themselves, capable of analyzing problems and finding ways of solving them.
This ties in very directly with Elesapiens ideas, and especially with our commitment to ensure that children acquire 21st Century skills: the ability to learn individually but to develop within a community, critical thinking, the curiosity for always investigating further, the capability of drawing conclusions from given facts and provide solutions to problems.
The main conclusion of this great conference is that only educating the citizens of the future in a different way we will have professionals and citizens that act in a different way, and who have the tools to cope with the challenges of the century we live in, and of the ones to come. And these challenges will undoubtedly be very different from those that we have known up until now.