Why is Skill-Based Learning Important for Your Child
- 24 March 2023
“There are rules to luck, not everything is a chance for wise; luck can be helped by skill”
This quote given by Balthasar Gracian stands true even centuries ahead. In the present scenario, skill-based learning takes a frontal place. Gone are the days of rote learning. The contemporary classroom is all about enhancing learners’ skills. Acquiring skills is particularly important in every stage of life; for example, during primary, middle, and high school, even adults learn to organize, plan different disciplines, and participate in volunteer activities that help to improve skills needed in the future. Skills are blended – learnt (implicitly) and taught (explicitly) – an ongoing and never-ending process. In this regard, Grade 2 PYP students at Oakridge International School, Gachibowli- the best IB School in Gachibowli, dived deep into honing self-management and organization skills.
Why Managing Skills is Important
It is important to identify the needs of personal life connected to society and develop a positive attitude towards being confident and independent. The basic requirements in organizing daily chores of life, when inculcated, bring tremendous results in the classroom as well. It is also interesting to know that even though individuals might lack certain skills at some level, these skills can always be inculcated through multiple explicit and implicit pedagogical methods. These skills pave the way for making one a global citizen.
Teaching Organization Skills at PYP Level
Now I would like to share how the practice “Plan strategies and take action to achieve personal and academic goals” under the Organization cluster were considered and taken forward for my grade 2 students which had an impact on their routine life. Students joined the school after two years of pandemic. They faced challenges to organize themselves according to their basic needs. This proved to be an exceedingly difficult phase both for the facilitators and the students. Observing this, I initially framed basic success criteria with the students for being organized in school like:
1) Keeping the stationery back in place
2) Tucking in the chairs
3) Managing themselves while going to different activity classes like going on the left side which will have a smooth flow of walking in the corridors
4) Not spilling the food and wasting the food.
In this regard, I used the MUSCOW strategy to develop organization skills as a continuum for two months. The continuum is made up of the criteria where they will rate themselves on a scale of 10 by the end of the day over one month. What does MUSCOW stand for?
Mu- Must (Must follow the criteria framed by them.)
S- Should (Monitors should give thumbs up by the end of the day for the class to be organized and permission granted for rating themselves as a part of organization skills.)
Co- Could (Friends could motivate/help with the success criteria.)
W- Would (Would be a part of tracking the continuum in the form of a rating.)
The first initiative was a success hence we proceeded to practice short- and long-term assignments; meeting deadlines through Eisenhower’s strategy under the organization cluster. The objective of Eisenhower’s strategy is to plan and carry out activities effectively. In this strategy, the students are given the option to choose between four quadrants which highlight the ways to spend time more wisely. The quadrants were urgent, not urgent, important, and not important. The students sorted out the things that need to be monitored while doing anything in connection to the time management in their routine into a combination of the quadrants like important/urgent, important /not urgent, not important/urgent, and not important/not urgent. The work to be done in the class was framed as class essential agreements for the term wise which made them prioritize their work and reflect on it.
This practice was liked and admired by the parent community and was continued at home with few more success criteria. It needed a lot of motivation and continuous observation from my end, but it brought a huge change, and I can still feel the impact even after 9 months have passed away.
– Ms Kalyani Talluri
Homeroom Teacher, Grade 2
Oakridge International School, Gachibowli