Lifelong learning skills can be a lot like many of the soft skills you may have heard of. They have to do with how we connect with each other, and with the world around us. In many ways, they're also about building relationships. With this in mind, let's look at the skills that are beneficial for everyone.
The world is changing and will continue changing dramatically. As such our children will be solving future problems that we can't even imagine yet. They'll face challenges that require skills to define a problem, design an appropriate solution, and put it to effective use. Problem-solving skills help them tackle anything from writing a shopping list to designing and realizing their biggest dreams.
The way we think about the world, ourselves, and each other affects more than just personal experience. It has a part in defining the future of everything and everyone and the entire world—this is the "Ripple Effect." It's been a part of many cultural philosophies for thousands of years, reminding us that how we choose to think and act influences our whole world. We don't have to be overwhelmed by it, just simply aware of it as it guides our critical thinking practices.
Natural leaders are an asset in any classroom and on every workforce. Anyone whose attitude moves from "I can do it" to "we can do it" makes everybody better. It's their independence and willingness to take responsibility for making good things happen, not just simply getting things done. That's why leaders see more, do more, and learn more.
In the digital age, communication has transformed beyond face-to-face interaction. We communicate using technology more than ever. In school, we work in groups to produce solutions to the challenges and problems we face. Interestingly, we do the exact same thing in the workplace. The only way this can be done effectively is with good communication. Having communication skills means less stress, more productivity, and better relationships.
Working in groups is a hallmark of the digital age. Our classrooms and businesses incorporate teamwork into their daily practices. As such, collaborative abilities have a permanent place among the most beneficial lifelong learning skills all students should develop.