Skills Our Children Need to Thrive in Today’s World

One thing we can agree on is that we are raising children for an ever-changing world. As a result, we must always think about the skills our children need to thrive in today’s world.

The World Economic Forum reports the following ten skills listed below to thrive in 2020.

  • Complex problem-solving.
  • Critical thinking.
  • Creativity.
  • People management.
  • Coordinating with others.
  • Emotional intelligence.
  • Judgement and decision making.
  • Service orientation.
  • Negotiation.
  • Cognitive flexibility

children thrive lagosmumsBy 2020, the Fourth Industrial Revolution will have brought us advanced robotics and autonomous transport, artificial intelligence and machine learning, advanced materials, biotechnology and genomics.

These developments will transform the way we live, and the way we work. Some jobs will disappear, others will grow and jobs that don’t even exist today will become commonplace. What is certain is that the future workforce will need to align its skillset to keep pace.

Thrive in Today’s World

According to Marty Neumeier talked on a talk about the Rules of Genius, there are four types of work. These are creative, skilled, rote and robotic.

Creative work can be described as Unique, imaginative, non-routine, and autonomous. Skilled work can be described as Standardized, talent-driven, professional, and directed.
Rote work is Interchangeable, routinized, outsourceable, and managed. While, Robotic work can be described as Algorithmic, computerized, efficient, and purchased.

Of these, you want to focus on creative work, because that is where you are likely to remain employable. Every professional can be creative in the work he or she does.

According to Alvin Toffler  “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”

In reality, relearning could be adapting what you know to a new reality.

Importance of Creativity

In a space of five years, the top skills needed have changed so much. Creativity which was the lowest skill required on the list in 2015, has moved to become the third most required skill by 2020. Creativity will become one of the top three skills workers will need.

Emotional intelligence, which did not feature in the top 10 a few years ago, will become one of the top skills needed by all.


Our children need to be life long learners. Learning how to learn will continue to be a necessity as things are changing and evolving so quickly. Coursera offers a course on Learning how to learn.

Being an avid reader is critical today and not only reading books for school work. Therefore, our children should be exposed to reading books on a wide range of subjects and interests.

Understanding and leveraging technology is another critical skill needed. As technology is changing at an unprecedented pace, so is the need to keep on top of it.

Change won’t wait for us: business leaders, educators and governments. In reality, we all need to be proactive in up-skilling and retraining people so everyone can benefit from the Fourth Industrial Revolution. (Source: World Economic Forum)

How To Prepare Children For The Future With Education

The Role of Education is a critical part of preparing children to thrive in the future. Children of the future will need schools to make a difference, more so than at any time in the past. Things change faster than we can keep up. Accordingly, education needs to prepare children for the future ahead and not for the present or the past.

Schools must inspire and encourage children to become individuals who challenge themselves. People who think outside the box, who socially network, see links, innovate and think for themselves. They must help children become adults who truly have a love of learning. Who has a passion for finding and harnessing their innate strengths—whatever they are.

Schools must help children become people who are determined to succeed;  relish a challenge and seek solutions wherever they may originate.

Core Skills

Whatever the future holds, the global workforce will still need core skills. Literacy, numeracy and technology skills transcend traditional subject boundaries. The core curriculum of schools now and in the future must require and maintain high standards in core areas.

A question educators must keep asking is “What skills will the adults and workforce of upcoming decades need?” and how will their training today equip them to be able to solve the global challenges the future will present?

“Schools of the future will have to create conditions in which children are encouraged to find their innate skills and passions, maintain their creativity and celebrate who they are—so that they might be their most authentic selves’ says Sir Ken Robinson, a world-renowned speaker on education.

Global Exposure

One way to prepare children for the future is to make sure they are having global interactions. One way of achieving this is with attending International schools if possible. These schools are naturally multicultural and global in nature thereby enabling children to have a range of experiences beyond their own immediate family and culture. [Read: Harrogate Ladies’ College – Why Choose An All Girls School?]

Skills children need to thriveTechnology

Everything now and increasingly in the future will depend on technology. As a result, our children need adequate skills when it comes to the use of technology.

Furthermore, our children must be responsible digital citizens. Increasingly, our digital footprint makes a huge impact on our future. Children need to be formally and informally learning about how to interact with others in a positive and constructive way. Our children must be aware of the implications of their actions, in addition, to developing an awareness of their own contribution.

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