Skill Based Learning NOT Subject Based Learning

Teach, Evaluate & Measure SKILLS - NOT Subjects

Photo of Niranjan Vasireddy
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Idea - Skill Based Learning Vs Subject Based Learning.

Why this is Important

- Ever wondered if you learn't cooking for 1 yr, what dishes you could make by the end of the year? I am sure we could cook up something that we could serve. Imagine what you could do if you learn't something 5 days a week for 10 yrs. I am sure you would been good at least at cooking many simple dishes.

Now The Problem - Ever wondered what a 10th Grade kid could do with just English that he/she has learned for 10 yrs. I ask this to school teachers in India and what teachers told me was shocking - They said "May Be" the children could teach. I know many of us as educators, would disagree and strongly feel their children could do more. Now we aren't we all trying to find answers to what we think our kids can do and what skills they posses. This to me was unacceptable. More so children studying for 19yrs ( i.e. from Nursery to 4yr Degree) come out saying they are Freshers. Isn't it another term we have given to kids with 19yrs of studying experience.

Meaning - Children have been cooking for 19 yrs and yet do not know how to cook (relatively speaking)

Simple Question - If you learn't cooking for 19 yrs - Then What can you cook? 

Now isn't this the question that most interviewer's ask in a job interview? - You are an engineer, so what can you do?

I always question what new skills has my son learn't from Grade1 to Grade2. It is always the same subjects. I know many educators would take a stand and believe that we have taught something new. I believe it to be true. However look at it from a child's eye, every yr you got to work on the same subjects and the report card looks just the same. Where is the fun, what is the skill. What is the next level. Why is GRADE the only measure?

Other Big Problem - Schools and Organizations talk different languages. 

Schools talk in Subjects and Organizations talk in Skills. Then if the role of schools in the society is to prepare children for a job or work - then why are we still speaking different languages?

Solution: Teach Evaluate & Measure Skills not Subjects

How can this be done?

1. Goal is to develop skills - not subjects. Subjects are the means of transportation. It does not matter in what vehicle we use as long as we get to the destination. Unfortunately lately it has become all about the vehicle and we forget the journey (experience) or why we are riding it in the first place (skills acquired). 

2. Project Based Learning - Why I think this is very imp - What is work experience? 

More Experience = >> Worked on More Projects = >> Exposure More Challenges = >> Develop More Skills =>> More Expertise

Projects just do that. Changing the goal helps bring clarity and meaning to Education. 

3. Skills Worksheets - Attached are skills worksheets I have developed, that enable coaches to plan the curriculum/Goal/Skills Developed for the yr/ qtr. 

Potential Impact - HUGE

1. Schools and Organizations speak the same language. 

2. Kids Develop Skills - They see their own progress in education year on year and find meaning in education.

3. Innovation in Education - Skill based I think would enable innovation. 

Love to hear thoughts/comments/ opinions and more.

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Paula's profile
Paula Marra

Role added on team:

"Wanted to collaborate with you and see how we can take the transdisciplinary approach to the next level. Check out the Skills worksheets that I have added. Love to hear your thoughts"

Niranjan's profile

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Photo of Paula Marra

Hi Niranjan,

I can see where you are going and yes we must teach skills, the subjects is the way we will use to get to be able to teach the skills. I would add concepts to the mix, which concepts are you teaching and keep in mind that concept, as you know, is one thing and content another.