Adaptability: the core transferable skill educators, families and students are all using everyday – Kirstie Mackey, Managing Director, LifeSkills created with Barclays

When we carried out our How employable is the UK? research in 2018, adaptability came through as a critical skill sought after by employers. Little did we know back then just how much everyone’s adaptability skills would be put to the test.

Whilst some of your colleagues may have remained in school educating the children of key workers, others have had to adapt by delivering lessons remotely and providing independent activities for students to complete at home. For many teachers it’s actually been a mix, but either way, all have faced challenges that were unthinkable just a few months ago.

Educators also aren’t the only ones who have had to swiftly adapt to the changing education landscape. In the space of a week, many parents and carers stepped into the role of teacher, providing a home learning schedule (even while potentially working from home themselves) and for some that role could continue into the autumn.

So, what help do your colleagues and parent communities need to continue adapting?

At LifeSkills, the free employability programme giving millions of people of all ages the skills, knowledge and confidence they need to succeed in the workplace; we have identified three key areas.

  1. Maintaining motivation and supporting wellbeing

Whilst families may have found a routine by now, it’s a good idea to ensure there are always new and engaging activities to try between essential curriculum work. All home situations are different; from hours in the day to electronic devices available, home learning is not one size fits all. Showing parents and carers where they can find support is imperative, especially as the summer holidays approach. The LifeSkills Families hub has been created to provide tips and advice for families that will help build resilience and employability skills for the future. Especially while they adapt to blended learning, it’s crucial to support young people in managing and maintaining good wellbeing. The hub contains activities designed to help young people develop coping strategies and maintain a positive attitude.

  1. Building transferable skills independently

Whether back at school or learning from home, students can continue thinking about their futures. Using this time to get students working independently to develop money management and employability skills can be a great way to prepare them for the future and the workplace. That’s why, we’ve adapted a suite of engaging activities on topics such as building resilience, money management, fraud, enterprising thinking and more, that can but used in the classroom or while supporting students’ independent learning at home.

  1. Delivering virtual sessions

With blended learning methods likely to continue, many teachers are honing their virtual delivery skills. But it has recently been reported that 75% of teachers want more online learning training as some have not received any since the beginning of lockdown. Here are some top tips on how to best make remote learning work.

Ask for constructive feedback from students and families; learning what students find most helpful and what perhaps isn’t working will help you make lessons as effective as possible. Why not create a weekly quiz to see how well students have understood topics covered and a quick questionnaire using emojis to see how they have found the remote-working methods?

Technology may be one of the more obvious challenges, so making sure you test everything before a lesson, including your webcam and microphone, is always a good idea – you don’t want to risk being on mute without realising. Get even more top tips from educators on how they have adapted to remote learning in our short film.

The flexible support available from LifeSkills and other organisations can help you, your colleagues and parent communities continue to adapt to a blended learning approach and offer students the opportunity to keep developing their own transferrable skills. For more information on the LifeSkills programme click here to find out more.

Leave a Reply