When we launched Ayara in January 2020 we spoke about how the future will be unpredictable. We ironically said “no one will know what the world will look like in 30 years” - COVID accelerated and compressed 30 years of change into 3 months. Much has changed but the need to provide children with the necessary skills to thrive into the future has not.
We still know that our children will need a different set of skills to cope and navigate in a new world. That new world is here now. Like many we had hoped to defer it for a while longer, but it is self evident that the complex, unpredictable, fast changing world is here now. Nicolhas Taleb spoke about it in his New York Times bestseller “Black Swan” - the now infamous book spoke about the impact of events that are of low probability but have an extraordinarily high impact if they occur, sound familiar?
The core question we must answer has not changed. “How can we ensure our children can survive and thrive in this unknown future”? How can we prepare them for a world that isn’t even in our imaginations?
Up until COVID, educators had been trying to update their educational curriculum to match the needs of this new world; but, it was not happening fast enough. In some cases not at all, or not at sufficient scale to enable every child to have access to the skills of the future.
One thing COVID has reinforced is that we don’t need a slow paced evolution in education, we need a revolution.
As extraordinarily difficult as it was for teachers, parents and students alike, shifting from teaching children in classroom to online was not revolutionary. It gave many parents a glimpse of what was going on in the classroom and while we should honor the resilience of our teachers and the changes they had to make, it has become evident that the content being shared and the modalities of engagement are not fit for purpose.
In education, the interface defines the experience. At junior school, high school and university alike, the on campus experience was the primary interface, this was in essence, what students and parents were buying either privately or through their taxes. The joy of the in person experience and the on campus social interaction has been over compensating for the substance of the output.
Now that COVID has peeled back those layers and put the actual educational content and outputs at the forefront, it has constructively and positively, exposed the fact that there are substantial gaps between what society needs students of all ages to be learning to thrive into the future and what is currently being presented in the classroom.
Any school or a university can only do so much in any given year to transform the classroom and the curriculum. It’s unreasonable to expect that schools will be able to move from an on campus experience, with in person student engagement to a hybrid on campus / online model with fresh future focused content within one year.
At our Ayara our job is to engage these challenge head on by:
- Providing resources and information for parents and educators to help them navigate the changes that society is demanding of the education sector
- Provide the tools and resources to help parents and educators teach students the foundations skills of the future
- Provide a safe and secure space for parents and educators to dialogue on the many changes required and how to best navigate them together
So as many countries across the world start to prepare for a new academic year, the one big question we would encourage parents, teachers and students to focus on
“How is the curriculum our children are learning providing them with the foundational skills to help deal with the uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity of the modern world”?
At Ayara, we are working with educators to create fun, interactive programs and tools to teach the basic foundational skills of the future, know to most as the 4C's. Our design program is designed to help students grow their communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking skills.
At Ayara, we believe that by providing parents and educators information, tools, and a space to collaborate, we will together create a world where our children have the foundational skills needed to thrive in the future. Join our movement today!