Equipping Children with the Tools to Succeed in the 21st Century

As technology advances, it is important that children are taught the skills they need to be successful in the modern world.

Afzal Badshah, PhD
ILLUMINATION
6 min readMar 22, 2023

--

Photo by Julia M Cameron at Pexels

When I was a child, my mother used to tell me that my relatives could do hard physical labour like climbing mountains for firewood or harvesting crops, but I couldn’t. I was in the village with my mother at the time, and physical labour was regarded as a skill and perfection. Those who could harvest crops and climb mountains were thought to be superior, and their mothers admired them. Because of automation, all of these hard physical skills have been lost over time, and now people with professional skills are in high demand and highly regarded. The world is changing at a breakneck pace, particularly since the end of the COVID pandemic; changes that were expected to take years are now taking place.

All this shows that we must train our children for the skills which are needed for their future. And should not engage them in outdated practices. This article will discuss the important skills for children's future and how we can train them for these skills.

The World Economic Forum’s Proposal: Ten Skills for 2025

Technologies are also eliminating jobs related to our hard skills. These tasks are now being performed automatically by machines powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). Therefore, the question is, what are the skills of today? The World Economic Forum has proposed ten skills for 2025. These skills can be categorised into problem-solving, self-management, working with people, and creating and using technology. These are the skills of the future and everyone needs them to keep up with the world. Below, we will try to understand their importance so that parents can learn these skills themselves and teach them to their children for a better life.

The Importance of Emotional Intelligence

Some people may be highly skilled, professional, and trained in their work, but have a negative attitude. They may struggle to control their emotions and become angry at the slightest provocation. This emotional and angry state can lead them to a very negative place and engage them in negative and harmful activities, demonstrating their lack of understanding of the importance of emotional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence, also known as EQ, is the ability to manage one’s own or others’ emotions and to communicate positively in order to reduce stress and overcome problems.

After I first studied emotional intelligence, my life changed dramatically. Therefore, I would suggest getting some basic training, reading, and understanding it, and teaching your children to do the same. Everyone should understand the need to express and control their emotions in order to lead a peaceful life. It is equally important to understand the feelings of others, know the facts, and respond appropriately to their feelings.

Resilience reinstates you after a disturbance

You must have observed that the branches of the trees move when the wind blows. As its speed increases, even the trunk shakes and bends the entire tree. And when this wind becomes a storm, the tree branches start touching the ground. As soon as the wind stops, the same branches start reaching for the sky again. These qualities of plants make them resilient and able to withstand storms and prevent them from falling. If plants did not have this flexibility, all the trees would break and scatter in storms. This ability of plants is called resilience.

Resilience is a quality that brings you back to the way you were before after a particular psychological or emotional disturbance. This ability is essential for life. But unless you know it or are trained in it, it can seem like an undesirable process.

Stress and anxiety are natural parts of life, but when they become excessive, they can harm a child’s physical, mental, and emotional health. I’ve faced a number of our students committing suicide due to minor issues, which emphasizes the importance of preparing our children for resilience. It is essential for parents to teach their children how to manage their stress and anxiety in a healthy way.

Photo by Ivan Samkov

Today’s technologically illiterate man is actually illiterate

Years ago a person who could not read and write was called an illiterate, but now an illiterate is someone who cannot use technology. So people who are in the upper age limit should try to understand today’s technology so that they are not called the illiterate of this age. Today every field is moving towards it and there is no field that can run without technology. That is why it is important that all of us keep learning new technologies with time.

“Today’s technologically illiterate man is actually illiterate.”

If you look at the world after the COVID pandemic, you will notice that the traditional way of working has been eliminated, and most businesses are shifting toward work-from-home methods. It is a sign that no matter what profession you choose, you will not be able to survive without technology. As a result, we must prepare our children to use technology safely.

Leadership and social influence are strengths

Leadership does not mean that you represent your constituency in Parliament. If you are a teacher, in charge of a class, it is important that you know how to properly lead a class. Social influence is a result of leadership. It’s a strength where you live. Social influence skills help you avoid obstacles and live a peaceful life full of opportunities.

If you have any one person in your contact, you need leadership skills to deal.

I’ve noticed that leadership skills are frequently overlooked. Prior to realizing the importance of leadership skills, I assumed that they were only required of politicians and that no other profession needed them. However, after getting in touch with it, I came to know that these are needed for everyone. If you have any one person in your contact, and surely you will have, then you need leadership skills. Leadership skills give a smooth and happy life.

Photo by Jason Goodman on Unsplash

Problem-solving skills are the core of the life skills

Problem-solving skills help you overcome problems quickly. No matter what field you are in, you will face difficulties. This is not only applicable to research-related institutions but it is needed everywhere. However, conditions change according to the situation. These skills enable you to solve problems quickly and efficiently. This is one of the key skills that companies look for in job seekers.

As parents, we frequently believe that we are protecting our children and that they have no problems and thus do not require such skills. The children, on the other hand, lack the necessary strength to deal with minor issues. These minor issues cause them stress and emotional distress. Therefore, we must teach our children problem-solving skills.

Learning abilities can be improved

Sometimes we come across people, whose learning and memorizing skills wonder us. This forced us to think about how they can have such sharp thinking and memorizing skills. The answer is that they have focused on these skills and brought them up from ordinary people.

Learning is a skill. According to research, we can improve learning abilities. You see many people who learn new skills very quickly. This is a skill that can be easily improved with a little practice. There is no such thing as an age limit for learning. From childhood to death we learn.

Unique individuals need analytical and creativity skills

Analytical thinking and creativity are the skills required today. These are the skills that leaders and their employees must possess in order to contribute to the success of an organization. Every generation needs a creative mind.

Analytical and creative intelligence should be nurture in educational institutions. If this does not happen, clerks will be born which the world no longer needs.

Consequently, a person who does not have these skills is considered illiterate. As long ago a person who could neither read nor write was considered. No matter what organization you serve you need to learn these skills, especially technology-related skills. This will open new avenues not only in employment or business but also in society.

Parenting and Schooling-A Comprehensive Guide​

69 stories

The writer can be reached via Google Scholar, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and WhatsApp.

--

--

Afzal Badshah, PhD
ILLUMINATION

Dr Afzal Badshah focuses on academic skills, pedagogy (teaching skills) and life skills.