The learning skills at primary are at the root of all of our learning at any age.
The six learning skills are:
The six learning skills help pupil understand how they learn in order to optimise their education academically and socially.
The learning skills are not just skills for learning but skills for life. It is impossible for us to know exactly what the economy or the jobs market is going to look like when the young people at primary school now emerge into the workforce of the future. Preparing our learners for adult life in the 21st century has to be about more than just the learning of facts and knowledge. We as educators should be committed to ensure that the children in our care become life- long learners and know HOW to learn.
Reflection Skills -
The children can be asked to reflect on their learning – on a piece of work just done; on behaviour; on a half term of work; on the previous year and to evaluate and assess and learn from what they have done. They may use that contemplation to set new goals and challenges for themselves. When being reflective children need to:
Deal with praise
Deal with setbacks
Deal with criticism
Understand their own progress
Evaluate their learning experiences
Ask for feedback.
Creativity Skills -
This is not just about designing and making things but very much about exploring ideas and asking questions to further the child’s creativity. It is about thinking ‘outside the box’ and using their imaginations in every part of their school life.
A belief that creative potential is inside everyone and can be found everywhere.
A belief that creativity can change things and improve things.
A belief that mistakes are to be celebrated, learned from and used.
An attitude of openness to new ideas and experiences when they appear.
An attitude of ‘smart risk-taking’.
Team Work Skills -
Being a team worker means being able to communicate thoughts, ideas and feelings in different situations from working as a team in P.E to being part of a group in class. The child can work on:
Children taking part in discussions and coming to agreements.
Adapting their behaviour to different roles.
Showing fairness and consideration to others.
Give support and feedback to others.
Enquiry Skills - Children should be encouraged to develop their enquiry skills by developing their investigation techniques.
The children should work on:
Planning to answer questions
Predicting and hypothesising
Looking at learning in new ways
Deciding which parts of what they have learnt are important
Finding answers to questions
Finding problems to solve
Finding exciting ways to learn something new
Explaining reasons for their decisions.
Self Management Skills - This is very important if we want our children to be independent and be responsible both in and out of the classroom. Using the phrases, ‘Be Responsible’ or ‘Take Responsibility’ when referring to learning behaviour also motivates them.
We should encourage children to:
Ask for help
Deal well with pressure
Organise their belongings and resources
Respond well to change
Commitment Skills -
When thinking about what skills are needed to be committed, we think of being:
Willing to invest (time, themselves)
Resilient – to keep going even when it is hard or tiring
Participative – in the class, in the playground on the sports field etc
Actively engaged – clear links to participation and investing time and self to work and friends.
As today's educators, one must find time to help students in working on these essential skills which not only helps in building character but also helps in building confidence.