Getting the role of education aligned with the demands of life in modern Britain has arguably never been more imperative. As educators, teachers and mentors, it is our responsibility to aid and support young people in their preparation for life outside the walls of school, college or university; so that they can thrive and flourish independently.
One method that we believe can support this preparation is by embedding opportunities to build self-esteem, motivation and confidence into learning. Approaching this from a human-centred standpoint enables students to feel valued and supported, and allows educators to better identify the pupil's core life skills. Furthermore, demonstrating that a student is valued by others reinforces their own self-worth and can give confidence when they come to think about the future.
Here is an example of ours of how human-centred learning can impact more than just the life of the child sitting in front of you:
Last summer, Alan Dean of Burning2Learn bumped into a former student who now has a family of his own. After reminiscing about old times, the student started to talk about the impact that learning in the way that he had with Burning2Learn had really made an impression on his life.
“It was a great experience for all of us, it changed the way I looked at myself and thought about my education. Alan was the first person to ever get me properly engaged in school, and I just hope that my daughter gets the same opportunities that I was given when she is at school.” - Former Student, John.
After chatting some more, John asked if Alan would work with his ten year old daughter, Tegan, to improve her confidence. He explained that she is keen to learn more at school, but that she has been suffering from low self-esteem in class. We all see it most days, students who are too timid to raise their hand when they know the answer, who's heads spend more time pointed at the floor than at what's in front of them - all of these students are missing out. John explained that when he was a student his teachers were lucky to see him once a week, and yet after working with Alan his attitude changed completely and when he got a placement at college he didn't miss a day in two years.
John wants to see his daughter achieve more and have more opportunities than he had in his own youth, and believes that getting a good education is the key to that. He remembered the feeling of support and sense of self-worth that had come with Alan's education programmes, and hopes that his daughter will have a similar experience too.
For several weeks, Alan worked with Tegan and invited her to take part in a variety of tasks and activities. Taking the time to get to know Tegan was the first step, and was closely followed by identifying her talents; some of which she already knew about and others that she learnt as she took on new roles and responsibilities.
Now that she is back at school and settling into the new year, John is happy to report that his daughter is making great progress - in school and at home -and says that she is a changed girl.
Burning2Learn strongly believe that positive messages and good news stories should be shared more and more for educators and leaders to see around the world. Most days, the news is swarming with stories about the difficulties and restraints ahead for the next generation, and I'm sure their social newsfeeds are no different! As such, we at Burning2Learn are aiming to spread good news stories and positive messages amongst educators and students alike. If you have a good news story that you would like to share, please get in touch with our team as we would be very interested to hear more.
You can find us at www.burning2learn.co.uk, or drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.