12 Skills that an educator needs in the 21st-century education
Technological advances have affected our lives like the way we communicate, collaborate, learn, and, of course, teach. These had made technology as part of our life!
Those advances had expanded our vocabulary, producing new terms such as digital natives, digital immigrants, and, the topic of this post — “21st-century teacher.”
Obviously, teaching in the 21-century is a lot of different phenomena; never before learning can happen everywhere, all the time, on any possible topic, supporting any possible learning style or preferences. However, what makes a 21st-century teacher really mean?
Here are the characteristics of a 21st-century teacher:
1) Learner-Centered Classroom and Personalized Instructions
As students could easily access to a wide information, there is no need to spoon-feed that information. As students have different personalities, goals, and needs, offering personalized instructions will be desirable. When students allowed making their own choices, they own their learning and increase intrinsic motivation so that students can put in more effort.
2) Students as Producers
Nowadays, students have the latest and greatest tools, but the usage in many cases barely goes beyond communicating with family and friends through chat, text, or calls. Although students are now viewed as digital natives, many are far from producing any digital content.
Even though they do own expensive devices with capabilities to produce blogs, infographics, books, how-to videos, and tutorials, but in many classes, they were asked to turn those devices off to work on handouts and worksheets. Unfortunately, these works are simply discarded once graded. If given a chance, students can produce beautiful videos and creating creative blogs that they feel proud of and share with others.
3) Learn New Technologies
In order to offer students choices, having one’s own hands-on experience and expertise will be useful. As technology keeps on developing, learning a tool once and for all is not an option. However, a good news is that new technologies are new and everyone can learn.
4) Go Global
Today tools are making it possible to learn about other countries and people. Of course, textbooks are still sufficient, but learning languages, cultures, and communication skills by talking to people from other parts of the world.
However, we still learn about other cultures, people, and events from the media. By encouraging students to leverage those tools in their hands to visit any corner of this planet will make students have a global outlook.
Remember language is an abstract and a soft skills and for students to acquire them, blogging is essential. Therefore, teaching languages like English, blogging really do see a value of writing for audiences and establishing their digital presence. Therefore, to blog is an essential tool to improve a student’s writing and self – expression as well as a way for them to communicate their stories to their audiences through their storytelling as important skills even could enhance their critical and creative thinking skills. Also, encouraging students to become more curiosity by reading and researching materials which is beneficial.
6) Go Digital
Another important attribute is to go paperless or encouraging virtual classrooms where organizing teaching resources and activities on the website through a software by integrating applications could bring students’ learning experience to a different level. Sharing links and offering digital discussions on a forum opposed to paper allows students to access and share class resources in a more organized fashion.
Star Wars Vs Physics
Technology allows collaboration between teachers and students. Creating digital resources like presentations and projects together with other educators and students will make classroom activities will make learning like a real world. Collaboration should go beyond sharing documents via e-mail and creating PowerPoint presentations. It can be done by using apps like Slack, Basecamp and Facebook. This is because collaboration can change our entire experience!
8) Project-Based Learning
The internet was a sea of vats information and students can access to many authentic resources on the web, research papers being indexed by Google Scholars, and peers learning the same subject globally. Therefore, teaching textbooks can be considered obsolete in a slow paced. Therefore, students in the 21st century should develop their own inquisitive questions, conduct their research, contacting experts, and create final projects to share by using devices already in their hands. Teachers will be playing the role of facilitators and coaches to help the students in their project and master soft skills like being inquisitive.
9) Build Personal Branding
Teachers need to teach students social media ethics like how to appropriately use social media, how to produce and publish valuable content, and how to create shareable resources. Maintaining professional behaviour both in class and online will help build positive image as a students’ valuable assets.
Coding is an important literacy like writing and reading were the tools for centuries. However, coding is very interesting to learn because the feeling of writing a website and designing a website can be very exciting and share its complexity of the code with your students can be very fun!
It is time to expand your teaching toolbox and try new ways you have not try before, such as teaching with social media and replacing textbooks with web resources. By using TED talks and encourage activities based on those videos, learning will become fun. It will encourage class discussions and participation. They will learn to appreciate new ideas and criticism by facilitating Socratic method. This will make students think critically and creative by building their scholastical arguments and becoming more lateral thinkers and linear – thinkers.
12) Keep Learning
New technology keeps emerging so learning and adapting is essential because survival the adaptable will be the new way to stay relevant in an uncertain and volatility in a fast-changing world. Therefore, lifelong learning is an important skill for teachers, educators and students.