What would these 7 skills matched to leadership in Texas schools look like? Are our leadership/management styles aligned to these 7 skills? When you watch a video about WolframAlpha–like this one–it’s pretty scary. I’d bet most of the questions are students are asking can be answered by this search engine…why aren’t we teaching them better? I suggest because we aren’t leading our schools to accomplish this.
Seven Skills as I understood them:
- Critical thinking and problem-solving: To accomplish this, we need more problem-based learning.
- Collaborative leadership: How do you work together to solve problems and innovate at a distance? How do you “win friends and influence people” over the network? There is definitely a need to know how to do this.
- Adaptability and learning: Not only do you have to be flexible and adapt (isn’t that humanity’s claim to fame, being adaptable in harsh environments?), you have to be able to learn quickly. This doesn’t sound like anything we didn’t need to do as we evolved…why are we not doing it in school?
- Take the initiative and be creative: Waiting for direction from others rather than taking the initiative and creating something can be a show-stopper. I know that I want people on my team who can take the initiative and create something new, something *I* never could have imagined.
- Effective Oral and Written Communication: this seems obvious.
- Accessing and analyzing information
- Imagination – This actually reminded me of Seth Godin’s purple cow
What I really enjoyed from this article was the steps at the end…I’ve paraphrased them a bit:
- Give students a complex, multi-step problem that is different from the ones they’ve seen in the past and, to solve it, they have to apply previously acquired knowledge.
- Students have to engage in parallel problem-solving–developing at least two ways to solve the problem–which requires some initiative and imagination. Then, share their solutions and rationale using effective communication skills (not just a Powerpoint, eh?)
- Teacher uses questions to push the student groups’ thinking.
- Hold the team, and each member, accountable for the solution and the thinking that went into it.
“Creativity is akin to insanity, say scientists…”
Source: BBC: http://bit.ly/caPQMk
What’s it like in YOUR neck of the woods?