John Goodwin on how Covid-19 will change education

John Goodwin on how Covid-19 will change education
Image: Courtesy LEGO Foundation
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It took a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders for 1.5 billion people worldwide, but something is finally occurring to us: The future we thought we expected may not be the one we get.

We know that things will change; how they’ll change is a mystery. To envision a future altered by coronavirus, Quartz asked dozens of experts for their best predictions on how the world will be different in five years.

Below is an answer from John Goodwin, the CEO of the LEGO foundation. His previous positions include Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the LEGO Group, and president of Procter & Gamble.

As the Covid-19 crisis is making even more apparent, our education systems will require a fundamental shift to meet the needs of all learners and equip them with the skills to tackle rigors and challenges throughout their lives. The classroom as we know it may look dramatically different five years down the line, yet the responsibility remains to provide our children with the skills and knowledge needed to flourish and grow into tomorrow’s leaders.

This catalytic moment offers us a unique opportunity to reimagine how students learn and, in turn, adjust our education systems and models for the future. So how will we best teach and prepare our learners? Alongside traditional academic skills, educators will affirm creativity, critical thinking, and social-emotional skills as part of their lesson plans. And instead of utilizing assessments that often label high- and low- performing students during their formative years, Covid-19 will compel educators to put a greater emphasis on hands-on, creative, and engaging experiences that nurture passion for lifelong learning and build physical, cognitive, social, creative, and emotional skills.

School closures undoubtedly had a significant impact on families, often creating tensions and stress. But our resilience and ability to learn through challenging life experiences mean that we will be nimbler and more adaptable as a result. And, by integrating creativity and play into and outside of the classroom, we will see greater learning experiences that give children agency in their development, that allow them to tinker, problem solve, try new things, fail, and try again. Learning will be active and engaging, not passive and uninvolved. We will look back on this moment and recognize it as a transformational period that ushered in a better, more holistic approach to education.

To read more New Normal answers, click here.