How to Make Students Innovation Ready, Not Just College Ready

The job landscape is changing rapidly. Ever-evolving technology, the rise of the gig economy, and dwindling job stability mean that students can’t always anticipate which career they’ll be pursuing a few years down the road. In order to make sure they are “innovation ready” rather than “college ready,” students should be taught to think outside the box and learn fundamental modern tools for creating their own companies, i.e. becoming entrepreneurs.

Digital citizenship is part of any modern entrepreneur’s life and business skill set, and includes social media, blogging, networking, collaboration, and crowdfunding. Creative teachers can incorporate these skills into their lessons in fun and engaging ways using some of these simple tips:

Blogging

Blogging and content marketing are skills that every entrepreneur or founder needs to master these days. Fortunately, blogging is also very easily integrated into classrooms. Language, literature, history, economics, arts, and even maths can incorporate blogging into their curriculums.

Blogging teaches students various skills, like writing in the digital age. Forget five-paragraph, third-person essays; students need to learn writing skills for the web. Blogging teaches students how to use hyperlinks, comments, media, metadata, embedded code, calls to action, opinions, feedback, and proper citing of data. Platforms range from simple Blogger or Tumblr blogs, to self-hosted WordPress or the education-specific Edublogs platform.

Collaborate Using Innovative Tools

Collaboration is an incredibly useful skill for a young, aspiring entrepreneur to learn. Students already collaborate on projects and coursework, so an easy way to help them understand modern tools for global collaboration is to introduce them to relevant digital tools. Teachers can create shared Trello boards to manage their students’ group projects. This tool will teach them how to divide and delegate tasks, create a project timeline, track progress, give each other feedback and move the project forward.

While entrepreneurship doesn’t yet have its own class in most schools, an incredible amount of resources and tools are available to teach your students entrepreneurial skills and help them navigate the modern working world. Do you have any tips for entrepreneurial lessons? Please share them in the comments.

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