Esther Wojcicki: How to raise successful people

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Leading US educator, blended learning expert and founder of the Media Arts Programme at Palo Alto High Schools, Esther Wojcicki, begins her Keynote by stating that learning has changed substantially while the education system has remained the same. Students in Spain spend more time in the classroom than the rest of the students in Europe and, according to the PISA report, this has not guaranteed better academic performance and we have to discard such deep-rooted ideas as the importance of memorising content. She goes further by asserting that until they are able to find solutions for themselves and memorise less, they will not succeed. For education to improve, the emphasis must be on what happens in the classroom. Some of the top skills that companies are looking for include complex problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, human resource management, emotional intelligence, among others, but the question is… Are we teaching these in schools? And, on the other hand, how do we learn these skills, especially creativity? Classroom experience is the key. Esther Wojcicki suggests that 20% of the time in schools should be devoted to learning to solve real problems, known as student directed learning.
There are many opportunities to make the world a better place. The entrepreneurs to whom we should give greater opportunities. Creativity, independent and different thinking must be encouraged. The characteristics of successful people are people who pursue their dreams, people who think differently from others, creative people, people who believe in themselves and people who build successful relationships. In her latest book, How to raise successful people, she addresses issues such as the importance of the relationship between teacher and student. To be a successful teacher, learner, company, she establishes the T.R.I.C.K. (Trust, Respect, Independence, Collaboration and Kindness) methodology. She also stresses the importance of parental collaboration at the earliest stages, as a child’s brain capacity develops by 85% between the ages of 0 and 5 years. Children’s social-emotional skills are the most important for their future success. She encourages allowing children to explore, peer to peer communication, not encouraging competition between them and reducing the process of memorisation.

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