What our students want - Did we turn our classroom into a cave?

One of the most important things to take into consideration, as educators and trainers, is to make lessons relevant for our students. It means to connect lessons to the real world, so as to boost students’ motivation and engagement. It gives students the opportunity to face real problems and be equipped with updated skills. 

When I was a young student all adult people used to say: “ok, what you are doing at school is boring, it doesn’t make sense to you now, but in ten years it will be useful to find a well paid job”.

This way of thinking is unacceptable for today’s students for at least three reasons:

  1. 65% of children entering grade school today will end up working in jobs that don’t even exist yet.
  2. Some children and young students are actually impacting their local communities, countries and even the entire world becoming entrepreneurs, activists and media creators.
  3. Our students know all of this.

Students want to make the difference now, not in ten years, and we must give them the tools to do it.

If you don’t think your subject can have connections with the real world let’s see this inspiring interview with Eduardo Infante describing how “Philosophy in the street” began.

For non native Spanish speaking users here is the translation of the interview with Eduardo Infante in English language .

A good chance to put yourself into the students’ shoes is the virtual dialogue organized by Generation Unlimited on how young people and businesses can reimagine skills post-COVID-19. 

They identified four important principles that should guide change of educational and training systems:

1. Updated curricula

There is a strong perception in young students that educational systems are outdated and cannot give them the right skills to compete in an international labour market. The new technologies are changing the working processes so fast that the only way to keep pace is that educators and companies work together in defining new curricula.

2. Focus more on soft skills than hard skills

Students are convinced that strong soft skills such as communication, critical thinking and resilience are the key for succeeding in future works. Soft skills can give an advantage regardless of the specific work and can foster change management and adaptation.

3. Digital learning is a reality

The Covid-19 crisis showed up the potential of digital education in terms of a reduction of the time needed for acquiring competences and better retention of the information. We must guarantee access to the internet and a proper digital literacy to everyone.

4. To guarantee access to everyone.

“It’s the notion of decentralising education and understanding that it doesn’t only happen in the classroom”. We must ensure the inclusion of the most disadvantaged students through innovative methodologies and synergies between educators and companies.


All these points are strongly related with the relevance we mentioned at the beginning. Some young people have the opportunity to make their dreams come true while others don’t. This is not only a matter of implementing innovative methodologies and tools or not. It is a matter of democracy of education, to give all students the possibility to impact the world. 

For the next Erasmus+ call we are working on these topics. If you want to be our partner or have a proposal to be developed, get in touch.

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