By Ritu Mahajan 

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.

Education is one of the most important and critical aspects of any nation but with the widespread COVID-19 pandemic, this sector has seen tremendous disruption and has changed our lives. COVID-19  has also been a great educator for us as it has taught us great life lessons. One of the lessons is keeping ourselves updated on the latest trends in education.

After the lockdown was imposed in India, some of the best CBSE schools in Gurgaon took no time in understanding the need of the hour and adapting to virtual learning, and create online classrooms for the learners. The timetables were modified accordingly, and the co-scholastic experts shifted their base from outdoor playgrounds and auditoriums to their homes.

Educators came up with novel ways to enhance their current teaching methods using virtual space as well as artificial intelligence and making it more multifaceted which not only maintained the interest of the students but also helped develop competencies and skills of their students. We could see the experts giving instructions to learners to utilize the resources kept at home for the classes.

I cannot stop myself from quoting an instance, wherein a music teacher taught the drum beats to the learners with a bucket and dandiya sticks. This was innovation and creativity. Although the teachers left no stone unturned in teaching the learners to the best of their abilities, there has been a significant learning loss for the students. This brings us to two very important questions.

1. How to make up for the learning loss among children post Covid-19?

A number of shifts can help us create a sustainable roadmap for ensuring quality education for all and overcoming the current learning loss among students, such as the innovation and agency demonstrated by teachers, their partnership with parents, and experimentation with and ownership of technology. That clearly indicates that educational institutes must keep themselves up to date with the latest trends in technology. It’s essential if our education systems are to meet the needs of 21st-century students and to prepare young minds for success in our rapidly changing world.

2. What will be the future job prospects?

Many of the jobs today’s school children will work in don’t even exist yet. LinkedIn predicts 150 million new technology jobs in the next five years, and almost all of the roles in LinkedIn’s “Jobs on the Rise” report for 2022 can already be done remotely. In its Schools of the Future paper, the World Economic Forum outlined essential characteristics that will define high-quality learning in the future. The skills  that are necessary to thrive in the 21st Century are:

  • Global citizenship skills (including awareness of the wider world, and sustainability).
  • Innovation and creativity skills (including problem-solving and analytical thinking).
  • Technology skills (including data science and programming
  • Interpersonal skills (including emotional intelligence, empathy, cooperation, and social awareness).

    The best CBSE schools in Gurgaon integrate life skills in the curriculum in such a way that it equips the students to make good decisions and solve problems in their academic and professional careers as well as their personal lives. The teachers in the schools also take the role of facilitators rather than content deliverers.

    The top trends in the education sector would be the ones that enhance student engagement. These are:
  • More digitized content and online learning – Schools provide more personalized, self-paced, and self-directed learning – in which learning becomes much more flexible and is paced to suit the needs of each student.
  • Collaborative, project-based, and problem-based learning. When students team up together to work on a project or solve a problem, it builds their collaborative skills. This collaborative learning approach helps students to interact with their peers and build their interpersonal skills. Schools provide project-based and problem-based learning which better reflects the 21st-century workplace as they engage the learners in solving real-world problems and finding solutions to those by making some real-life connections through experiential learning.
  • More immersive learning with AR and VR– Schools harness technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality to bring topics to life and immerse students in a subject through immersive learning experiences like field trips, expert sessions, experiments, and socio-emotional learning.
  • Gamification: The Schools use gamification in classrooms in different forms such as leaderboards, reward points, badges, stickers, etc. Of all the trends in education technology, gamification is the one trend that guarantees an increase in participation, and engagement. So, teachers must use gamification as a means to increase engagement, boost motivation and create an interactive classroom environment.
  • Social Media in Learning: Teachers of the best schools allow the use of social media as part of the learning model because it helps students to stay interested in their courses and increases engagement. Social media is here to stay and incorporating it into learning modules will build a culture of collaboration and sharing, leading to an improved learning experience. With social features embedded in their eBooks, they can share study materials, opinions, projects, etc.
  • Data Management & Analytics: Analytics has become an important part of any online learning model as it enables the measurement of a child’s engagement and academic performance. According to the data available, teachers can develop action plans to improve students’ performance, through the number of tests attempted, chapters completed, etc. This kind of automation in classroom activities has enabled teachers to focus more on their course modules and offer in-depth guidance.
  • More bite-sized learning –. Our appetite for learning is also evolving in sync with digestion. There is no love lost for samosa as most of us prefer bite-sized snacks for instance a pinwheel samosa as compared to a full samosa these days. In the future, more education will have to be delivered as bite-sized, snackable content. This is quite logical because, according to a study by Microsoft, humans now have an attention span of around eight seconds which is less than a goldfish.
  • Nano learning Ultrabite-sized lessons: Brief lessons for teaching are required for the learners. It is a tutorial program designed to permit a participant to learn a given subject in a ten-minute time frame through the use of electronic media and without interaction with a real-time instructor.
  • Online Data and Cybersecurity: The need for data security is at an all-time high. While cloud storage has become the norm these days, it could prove disastrous at times. People and institutions prefer cloud storage because it is a shared environment and it makes accessing data easy for everyone. Student information like name, email address, date of birth, and phone number cannot be compromised. Test results and assignments are also stored on the cloud by many. The best education institutes keep working on implementing the best data security measures to protect their online data and their student’s interests.

    Change is inevitable, growth is optional.

    Being educators, all of us must adapt to change and grow. It will allow us to move forward in life and experience new and exciting things, improve quality of life, and replace old and worn-out resources with efficient ones,it gives us hope for the future and provides opportunities for success.