Bill Lucas writes in The Conversation (21.11.16) about the introduction of critical thinking and creativity skills into various areas of the Australian school curriculum from next year.
‘When students go back to school in January 2017 there will be some significant changes to their timetables. As well as learning areas like English, maths and science, there will be some new things to grapple with called “capabilities”.
‘The Australian curriculum will be focusing not just on the 3Rs – reading, writing and arithmetic – but also on the kinds of “soft” skills young people will need if they are to be successful throughout their lives.
‘… Across the world there are initiatives which demonstrate that capabilities can be both developed and assessed.
‘These include ‘Building Learning Power’, the ‘Partnership for 21st Century Learning’, ‘AC21S’, and ‘New Pedagogies for Deeper Learning’ which is now being tried in more than 70 Victorian schools.
‘For more than a hundred years we have focused on teaching and assessing disciplinary knowledge in schools. Now we need to focus on capabilities as well. While it will not necessarily come naturally to all teachers, it is vital work.’