There are many ideas about the future of schools. The school of the future wants to solve all the problems we have including the cost of education globally; a more useful and credible education our students will benefit with over the course of their life. So is it a big, beautiful campus that will help us? Is it free laptops for all our students? Or is it a diverse community?
A close friend and I have always dreamt of a school subject that’s called „Leben“ (life in German). During these ‘Leben-lessons’, students would learn how to get money back via taxes, how to obtain the driver’s license and what to say during a job interview to guarantee a good impression. Now, many years later, I actually believe that the school of the future focuses on the student, the person that sits in front of the teacher. If we should really teach taxes – about that I’m not so sure anymore. Many critics often say that then the value of the true education gets lost, because we start to ‘dumb’ down the topics being spoken about so everyone in the classrooms learns at their pace. But I would argue otherwise: it’s not about how difficult we present a topic that makes a student smart if he or she finally understands it but rather what the student thinks he or she can do with the topic. This pursuit of teachers to the students sparks interest and allows them to dive into their interests.
Professional development for teachers and the lifelong learning mindset of students go hand in hand. We, as educators, have to hold ourselves to the same standards we want our students to be: always learning; always evolving, whether it be institutional through a degree or personally by learning online. It’s about time management skills become more and more important. In my school career some teachers spoke about it; others did not and it was through my ambition how I actually learnt what to do best for my time.