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Workshop for Hospitality Executives in London

Last Thursday, here in London, I conducted a workshop for 20 senior executives and entrepreneurs from the hotel industry. The workshop was on Entrepreneurial Dispositions and we looked at growth mindset, grit, intrinsic motivation and emotional resilience, with a special focus on dealing with the fear of failure. Besides a talk and Q&A, I had […]

Remote Mentoring, from London to India

Last week, I conducted a session on Skype for 150+ students, teachers and alumni of SDSN school in village Dariyapur, Rae Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh, India. I explained how, when the economic landscape transforms because of disrupting technologies, if skills don’t keep pace, the end result is increasing inequality. I further explained how the 4th […]

Timeless Lifeskills featured in Chirag Newsletter

A short piece about Timeless Lifeskills workshops conducted in Dec 2016 at Chirag school. Chirag is a rural school located in the picturesque Kumaon region of the Indian Himalayas. Their main goal is to demonstrate that quality education for rural children can be provided at an affordable cost. The school envisions itself as a model […]

The Amazing History of the Universe – in Hindi

Arvind, a software engineer by profession and a lifelong physics enthusiast, and I have collaborated under the ‘Timeless Lifeskills’ banner, to produce a video series in Hindi titled, “Brahmand Ka Adbhut Itihaas”. Over 13 episodes we narrate the history of the universe from its creation to the expansion of intelligent life on planet earth. There […]

Get ThinKING!

In the late 18th century, steam led to the First Industrial Revolution; in early 20th Century, electricity led to the Second Industrial Revolution; in late 20th century, ICT led to the Third Industrial Revolution; and now, Blockchain, Big Data, Robots, Drones, Machine Intelligence, Nanotech, Biotech and other technologies are ushering in another new era. If […]

The RGB Life Skills

What makes a student future-ready: O-level or GCSE? IB Diploma or A-Level? Academies, Grammar schools, or Faith schools? These issues seem to be the focus of debate about education today. However, instead of focusing on ‘how’ should education be imparted, isn’t it a lot more important to first ponder ‘what’ education should be imparted, given […]

Workshops in Rural Schools in India, Sept-Oct 2016

Last year, from Sept 21 to Oct 7 I was in India, once again conducting life skills workshops in rural schools in the Himalayas, in Kutch and near Delhi. My focus in these workshops is on fostering a yearning for learning and cultivating independent, critical and creative thinking skills. In these workshops, I focus on […]

Life in the Gig Economy

Artificial Intelligence, Genetics, Blockchain, Bio-tech, Internet-of-Things, Gig Economy… are some emerging trends and technologies that will shape the 21st century. In this video, I explore the changing nature of work and rise of the Gig Economy.

Full STEAM Ahead!

At the recently concluded Brexit referendum in the UK, it is estimated that only 36 percent of people aged 18-24 voted, when the decision to leave or remain in the EU impacts the youth most. Young people who did vote, did so overwhelmingly for ‘Remain’ while the overall outcome was in favour of ‘Leave’ begging […]

‘Flip’ Your Job with AI

Search Engine Optimiser was not in the job lexicon a decade ago and a decade hence, probably earlier, Blockchain Validator might become a sought after job. Artificial Intelligence (AI), or computers that can learn themselves are changing the complexion of employment by becoming capable of doing tasks that could earlier be done only by a […]

I am Going on a Digital Diet!

Recently I attended a panel discussion at my son’s school on students’ wellbeing and the most hotly discussed topic there was the overuse of computers, internet and smartphones by adolescents. This set me introspecting about my own use of digital technologies. I believe, while I am definitely not addicted to ICTs, I will be better […]

Videos in Hindi on Trends & Technologies

I have started a video series in Hindi on technologies and trends that have the potential to disrupt life in the 21st century. I have done so because there is a lot of information available on these topics in English but not so much in Hindi. To be aware of the challenges and opportunities these […]

Life in the Gig Economy

In the early 20th century, for a city dweller in India, definition of a nice life usually meant, “He got a government job, and lived happily ever after!” Such a person studied until a certain age, usually until graduation, and then looked for a job. A good job usually meant working for the government, or […]

Old Tales Retold

As a kid, I enjoyed reading stories from the Indian lore. If I were to narrate the same stories to kids living in metropolitan cities today I doubt they will relate to these stories. These old tales need a retelling. So here goes…  Shravan Kumar On behest of his old and blind parents, Shravan Kumar […]

This Summer Vacation, Tinker & Learn Life Skills

I find tinkering activities if designed well, are a great way to learn some essential life skills. Not just Timeless Lifeskills but also skills that need to be learnt urgently given the context of the 21st century, like developing curiosity, taking ownership of learning to satiate own curiosity, making learning fun, developing the power of […]

Getting Future Ready

Millions of years back the only driver of change and adaptation was evolution or the gene. Then around 70,000 years back, Homo Sapiens evolved to speak a complex language, with which they could communicate abstract ideas. The advent of language and writing allowed us to codify, exchange and preserve knowledge efficiently. Prof David Christian, the […]

Exhibition at The White Eagles School, April 2016

After the 3-day workshop on Tinkering with Electronics and Robotics, on the fourth day, an exhibition was organised at The White Eagles School, where not only the projects completed during the workshop were on display but students also showcased many other projects they had worked on in their school. These projects were on Science, Social […]

Making the Most of Whats App!

I have been conducting workshops at rural schools in India for the last 5 years. 85 teachers and students are in regular touch with me on a Whats Group we have formed. Among other things I take them on ‘virtual’ tours wherever I go. This time was no different. I took this group with me […]

A Curriculum for Tinkering with Electronics

Tinkering is learning by playing. Tinkering fuels the imagination and catalyses creativity – both essential life skills for the 21st century. So for my forthcoming workshops in April, I have designed, no curated, a Tinkering with Electronics curriculum. Curated, because I have taken project ideas from MIT Media Labs, San Francisco Exploratorium, Toys from Trash, […]

GPS or Compass?

Formal education tends to behave like a GPS giving learners step-by-step instructions for a well-defined world. This GPS approach worked well in the 19th and 20th centuries when stockpiling knowledge in a domain, in the form of a University degree, usually assured lifelong employment because the rate of knowledge accumulation in most domains was not […]

ACGT Life Skills

In my forthcoming workshops in April, I plan to build on the theme of ‘Tinkering with Electronics’ that I had started last December and introduce robotics in rural schools in India I work with. For this, earlier in January, I had ordered robotic kits from two vendors in India and purchased one here in London […]

What’s the Title of Your Life Story?

Thinking of a title of your life story can be a good exercise in catharsis. You can not only look back and think of appropriate titles for different stages of your life, you can also look forward and imagine captions for chapters that lie ahead, which will make your life more joyful and meaningful. You […]

It’s About Time

In their annual letter, this year Bill and Melinda Gates write about energy and time. Among other things they describe the importance of opportunity cost of time. Opportunity cost is the next best use of a resource. If instead of doing what you are doing right now what ‘other’ thing could you be doing? That ‘other’ thing […]

Ooch Before You Leap!

Couple of days back I met a 15 year old. He mentioned that this summer holidays, after his GCSE examinations, he would like to do a short internship in a bank or a tech company to get a feel of what life is like in these professions. He is interested in economics and technology and […]

Life’s About Being In Your Element – But How?

Have you heard the joke – my heart was a scalar, till it found you. Now it’s a vector. ‘Being in your element’ is like being a vector, an entity that has both speed and direction. Terence Tau is a vector. When he was two he watched Sesame Street, like many children do, but unlike […]

This Life, Do Something Incredible!

My son recently got a document from his school that lists the subjects he has to choose from for his GCSE exams. We were discussing his options and I asked him what are his parameters for choosing a subject? Right off the bat he said, “My interest in the subject and how good I am […]

Diversity in Thinking – Comparative Advantage in a VUCA Future

“Who won World War II?  i. Goodies  ii. Baddies” Taken from a cartoon, this line nicely sums up how multiple-choice questions in standardised examinations are dumbing down education. We have become besotted with how students perform in examinations. Such exam-centric education unduly emphasises learning the content of a discipline, usually by rote, and students often […]

Anatomy of the A-ha Moment

The brightly lit bulb in comics depicts a flash of insight, when something incomprehensible suddenly makes sense, the moment you go ‘A-ha, I got it!’ The mental exhilaration you get when you make
a connection between something new and something you already know is called the a-ha moment. True comprehension is also what makes knowledge actionable. […]

The Positive Spiral of Education

As an independent educator, I often conduct workshops at schools and this gives me a chance to interact with teachers. Couple that with all the various parent-teacher meetings I have attended as a parent to a 14-year-old, and it means I have observations on the different kinds of teachers that people the education world. I […]

The Promise of Curiosity: A 21st Century Superhero

Long gone are the days when curiosity killed the cat. Meant for a time when asking questions – being curious – was considered undesirable, since you were only supposed to “receive” information being meted out to you in classrooms mostly, today it is curiosity that’ll take the learner a long way. We could revise that […]

The Networked Learner

A common joke these days goes something like this – Child: “Dad, what is the meaning of the word omniverse?” Dad: “Umm, I don’t know.” Child: “That’s ok. Can you ask Google?” We are living in an era that is often called the age of information explosion – which makes it impossible to know everything. […]

This Deepawali Light the Lamps Within… in the Right Sequence!

In his book Surely You’re Joking, Mr Feynman, physicist and Nobel laureate Richard Feynman narrates this story – when he was around 12 years old Feynman got a reputation for fixing radios. Once he was asked to fix a radio that made an ear piercing noise when it was switched on and it took a […]

The Evolving ‘R’ – Story of Education in the West (Part-3)

We are discussing the history of education in the West. In Part-1, we looked at Greek and Roman education, influence of Christianity that led to the formation of Church schools, Monasteries, Grammar schools and later to formation of Universities. The 3Rs of education at this point were – Reading, ‘Riting and Religion. In Part-2, we […]

The Evolving ‘R’ – Story of Education in the West (Part-2)

We are tracing the story of education in the West and in Part-1 we considered how the disciplinary Spartans, philosophical Athenians, pragmatic Romans and zealous Christians envisioned an educated person. The Christian Cathedral schools and Monastic schools grew in numbers and in importance. These schools were effectively run by one teacher, and as some teachers […]

The Evolving ‘R’ – Story of Education in the West (Part-1)

The answer to the question “How ‘R’ you?” over the centuries has come to epitomise who is considered an educated person. ‘R’ is the defining letter when it comes to understanding the evolving story of western education. ‘R’ stands for Reading, of course, but the ‘R’ of ‘Riting and ‘Rithmetic follow not too far behind. How they […]

AI Versus Me

‘Humans Need Not Apply’ – a video that recently went viral describes the future of intelligent machines and how they will disrupt human employability. ( Famous inventor and futurist, Ray Kurzweil, predicts that exponential increase in computing power will see artificial intelligence (AI) surpassing human intelligence in 2045. He describes this as the ‘Technological Singularity’, […]

The Idea Ecology

Ecology is the study of interactions among organisms and their environment. Ideas too have their ecology. When the environment is VUCA – volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous, a lone genius is unlikely to find the most elegant solution to a complex problem. A network of curious people, with deep knowledge in different domains, has a […]

From Solo Artists to Knowledge Jockeys – The Story of Human Learning

Learning is in our DNA. All creatures learn and adapt; it is at the very core of evolution. Psychologist James Baldwin suggested that an organism’s ability to learn new behaviours affects its reproductive success and therefore, over generations, through natural selection, becomes part of the genetic makeup of that organism. This is called the Baldwin […]

Cut to the Chase with Anshul Tewari

He boldly goes where no Aam Aadmi has ever gone before. Meet Anshul Tewari, the maverick and brilliant founder of Youth ki Awaaz, India’s only legit crowd-sourced digital news & opinion website that just landed Rs 4 crore investment.

Cut to the Chase with Wendell Rodricks

They say humility and talent take you a long way, because when coupled together, they become akin to an invincible force of nature. Padmashri recipient, fashion designer extraordinaire and local Goan activist Wendell Rodricks embodies just this. In Cut to the Chase today, he talks about his learning journey and the importance of trying times […]

Cut to the Chase with Tulsi Badrinath

Bharatanatyam exponent and writer Tulsi Badrinath never quite figured out what to do with her “mandatory” MBA degree. Perhaps because she realized the wisdom in that adage some time ago – ‘Do what you love, never work a day in your life.’ In Cut to the Chase, we bring you close to that feeling of […]

Cut to the Chase with Chef Saby

What’s cooking in Cut to the Chase today? A gourmet chat with one of Delhi’s most acclaimed chefs, the trend-setting, award-winning Sabyasachi Gorai, popularly known as Chef Saby. Read if you’re considering a profession in the kitchen and see if you’ve got what it takes to brave the heat! 

Cut to the Chase with Indranil Chakraborty founder, StoryWorks

With 21+ years of experience in the corporate world including working at Unilever as Global Brand Director, Indranil Chakraborty decided to strike out on his own in 2013. He moved to Goa and founded StoryWorks, the first Indian company that focuses exclusively on business storytelling. In this conversation, among other things, he tells us that […]

Cutting to the Chase with rock band, Indian Ocean

Super-cool, ultra-alt and ubër-indie music band Indian Ocean has always made songs in which a flute sounds as at-home as a fully amped electric guitar. They gave birth to an all-new sound that went onto create progenies for generations after. Advaita, most famously. You’ll find them at the helm of cutting-edge concepts often – both […]

Cut to the Chase with Ramesh Vala OBE, lawyer and philanthropist

Can the desire for social good go hand-in-hand with the thirst of ambition? It takes an Order of the British Empire to tell us how that is a rhetorical question. This week, in Cut to the Chase, we offer you thoughts and insights from Ramesh Vala OBE, on not just doing good, but doing it […]

Cut to the Chase with Award Winning Filmmaker, Dibakar Banerjee

This week in Cut to the Chase we have a very special treat for Bollywood fans – a career counselling tête-à-tête with filmmaker Dibakar Banerjee. Two times winner of the National Award for his movies, Khosla ka Ghosla and Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! his advice for aspiring filmmakers – “It is my belief that to […]

Why do adolescents love taking risks?

Adolescence, which starts at the onset of puberty and is now considered to go on till mid 20s, is usually considered a potentially troublesome age. Research bears this out – reckless driving, social media indiscretion, dangerous YOLO dares, crime, binge drinking, unintended pregnancies, attempted suicides and drug abuse incidence can all happen at this age. […]

Cut to the Chase with Education Evangelist Prof M.M. Pant

In our weekly interview series, Cut to the Chase, where we chat with Professionals at the Peak of their Game on what advice they have for young people, this week we are in conversation with Prof M.M. Pant, a master of many disciplines – a physicist who taught at IIT Kanpur, former Director of Computing […]

Cut to the Chase with Deepa Krishnan, banker turned entrepreneur

In Cut to the Chase this week we chat with Deepa Krishnan, who after 18 years in the financial services and banking sector, quit and moulded her passion for responsible tourism into her vocation. Deepa is the founder-owner of Magic Tours of India, an enterprise that partners with non-profits to upskill and employ students from […]

Inner Conflicts

Visual Explanation on overcoming inner conflicts. More at 

Cut to the Chase with Amitabh Pande, Consumer Insights Maestro

This week we chat with Amitabh Pande a consumer insights maestro, who has recently quit PepsiCo to strike out on his own as an independent consultant. Amitabh explains how data has become a commodity and it is the ability to derive insight from information that is truly of value today. But what sort of formal […]

Cut to the Chase with Rajeev Joshi, Senior Engineer at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

This week we interview Rajeev Joshi, Senior Engineer at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Rajeev was a member of the flight software development team for the Mars rover Curiosity and, since landing, has been supporting the surface operations team – Cut to the Chase is our weekly interview series with professionals in different fields, who […]

Cut to the Chase with Tarun Tahiliani, Fashion Designer

In our Cut to the Chase weekly interview series with professionals in different fields, this week we chat with famous Indian fashion designer, Tarun Tahiliani – We hope our interviews with professionals at the peak of their game are an inspiration to the community of youth we wish to reach out to. Feel free to […]

Cut to the Chase with Vandita Pant, Business Treasurer, RBS

We are starting a new initiative at Timeless Lifeskills – Cut to the Chase – weekly interviews with professionals in different fields, who are an inspiration to the community of youth we wish to reach out to. We want to give our young audience a sense of what a typical and a not-so-typical day feels […]

Role Playing to become Aware Citizens of a Democracy

Last December Atul was back at Jeevanshala school in village Maram in the Himalayas. Earlier, in July ’14, Atul had introduced project-based learning and grade 4 and 5 students had visited a local ‘naula’ (traditional water source) and created a newspaper based on their findings (see our earlier FB posts). Atul was pleasantly surprised that […]

This new year… may you learn and flourish!

A hearty welcome to our new readers on Facebook – thank you for joining in! And to all our readers, best wishes for a great year ahead – may you learn and flourish! We urge you all to consider making a new year resolution – to learn something new, something different, or something in–depth. According […]

This Children’s Day – Foster a Yearning for Learning

At Timeless Lifeskills, we’re bringing in Children’s Day this year with a bang of a book – the only way we know how! Celebrating the joy of learning for the sake of learning such that it helps you grow and flourish in the 21st century and beyond, Yearning for Learning: The Adventures of K is […]

Online Course on Self-directed Learning

With eminent Indian educationist Professor M.M. Pant we have launched a pilot online course on self-directed learning. Over the next six weeks we will be looking at various aspects of self-directed learning – why has it become imperative in the 21st century, what are the dispositions of an autonomous learner, how can these be imbibed, […]

Jeevanshala Field Trip to Almora

Many of the children at Jeevanshala, the tiny primary school in village Maram in the Himalayas, have never gone beyond the villages in their vicinity. Thus, with a lot of support from well-wishers like Mr Ranjan Joshi, a 3 days field trip to Almora, one of the major towns in the region, was organised by […]

Timeless Lifeskills Workshop at Jeevanshala primary school, village Maram

At Jeevanshala, a tiny primary school in village Maram, 50 k.m. from Almora the focus of Timeless Lifeskills workshops was on self-directed learning, critical thinking, creative expression and multimedia skills. One of the projects we did was on ‘naulas’, a traditional source of water in the mountains. Water pipes and taps are now much prevalent […]

Another Round of Timeless Lifeskills Workshops in Himalayan Schools

If Mahatma Gandhi were alive today would there be no corruption in India? Would relations between India and Pakistan be better? Would he run a factory or spin the wheel? What impact did Mahatma Gandhi have in the Kumaon region? Did the Himalayas influence him? These were some of the questions posed by 6th, 7th […]

Deeply grateful. Intensely responsible. Supremely motivated.

Our sincere thanks to all our contributors for making us feel this spectrum of emotions, by helping us reach our target in our maiden crowd funding campaign, And, a big shout-out to all our supporters for their time, mind share, energy and influence. Thank you all for your faith in Timeless Lifeskills, our belief in […]

Hurray! £9068 raised, only £932 remaining. 65 hours to go.

45 supporters have helped us raise £9,068. Our sincere thanks to all of them. Only £932 remains to be raised of our project cost of £10,000, to create a comic book on self-directed learning and make it available for free to 200 schools for underprivileged children. Even a small contribution has the power to effect […]

An Inner Compass

If our children are destined to be doing jobs that haven’t been invented yet, have you thought about how we, as parents, can equip them for a future we cannot even comprehend today? The only thing certain about it is that it will be fiercely competitive. In an ubër wired world with unbelievable access to […]

Help us Help 200 Schools, but hurry

At Timeless Lifeskills the three key issues we are addressing are – Relevant Curriculum (life skills needed for shining in the 21st century), Enticing Learning Experience (that appeals to today’s distracted learners) and Affordability (to make education inclusive as it is otherwise becoming expensive and hence exclusive). The past four years have seen us creating […]

A Scenius for K

In the science of ideas, sometimes called ideonomy, we have what Brian Eno calls, ‘scenius’ – “Scenius is like genius, only embedded in the scene rather than the genes. A communal form of genius.” With your help we want to create a ‘Scenius for K’, the 15 year old hero of our comic ebook. And, […]

Flash Boys and an Education in Liberal Arts

In an earlier blog post I had shared a quote from Tom Friedman’s interview of Laszlo Bock, senior VP in-charge of hiring at Google: “…I told that student they are much better off being a B student in computer science than an A+ student in English because it signals a rigor in your thinking and […]

Imagine, a World Full of Computer Scientists!

To fire up K’s passion for learning, learning for the sheer joy of it instead of learning to earn, learning for the thrill of knowing something about the world he didn’t know before, something about himself, we plan on taking unsuspecting K, the hero of our comic ebook, on an adventure. An adventure that will […]

Comic eBook on Self-Directed Learning | in English and Hindi

When you yearn to learn – learn for the sheer joy of learning – chances are you’ll survive the coming age and its challenges better. Not just survive, but thrive and prosper – ride it. And not just thrive, but find that elusive equilibrium within yourself. Our objective of creating a comic ebook on self-directed, […]

Support our Crowd-funded Comic eBook on Self-Directed Learning Skills

If you, like us, are concerned about how children are learning (or not learning) these days, consider joining us in creating a ‘Comic eBook on Self-Directed Learning Skills’ that will provide information and guidance to young adults on how they can become better learners. They will also find reading our comic ebook on their iPod, […]

Endgame of Education?

Fellow travellers on the Jubilee line in London may recall an ad campaign for a university last year. The ad read, “Think Different, Think Employability, Think xxx University”. The ad set me thinking. While considering a university degree if you are thinking employability are you really thinking different? I believe better copy for the ad […]

Empathetic Human vs Efficient Machine

My son is going on a school trip to France and since he holds an Indian passport he has to apply for Schengen visa. This morning we went to the company that processes Schengen visa applications. Although the experience was pleasant enough and fairly efficient it made me wonder how secure are the jobs of […]

21वीं सदी में समृद्धि के लिय क्यों भिन्न जीवन कौशल आवश्यक हैं? Why a different set of life skills is needed to flourish in the 21st century?

Inspired by the trip I made to the Himalayas in December to conduct Timeless Lifeskills workshops in small schools, I have started rerecording the videos I have created earlier on 21st century life skills with narration in Hindi. Here is the second video with Hindi narration. I discuss why a different set of life skills […]

Self-Directed Learning – workshop at Pataudi (a small town in Haryana)

The last workshop I conducted during the Dec 2013 trip to India was at Pataudi, a small town in the state of Haryana. 9th class students, 15 from the local government school for girls and 15 from Pathfinder school attended the workshop. The workshop was held at the Pataudi Palace, courtesy of Mrs Sharmila Tagore. […]

Timeless Lifeskills workshop at Aarohi Bal Sansar, Satoli village (near Almora, in the Himalayas)

Around 30 kms from Almora is village Satoli, where Aarohi is located. Aarohi is a not-for-profit grassroots organization, with the mission of creating development opportunities for rural Himalayan communities through quality healthcare and education, enterprise promotion, sustainable natural resource use, and the revival of traditional culture. I spent three days at a school run by […]

Learning to Think (part – 2)

In this video we explore techniques that help overcome inherent assumptions and biases in our thinking. With the help of examples we learn how thinking skills form a spectrum – instinctive thinking, critical thinking, judicious decision making, creative thinking,  problem solving, innovation and meta-cognition.

Why Timeless Lifeskills

A short video animation explaining the reasons why a new set of life skills is required for success and well-being in the 21 century and what these life skills are.

Timeless Lifeskills – The Second Strand of Education!

Education can be thought of as having a structure similar to the double-helix structure of the DNA. The first strand is formal education and Timeless Lifeskills form the second strand. This short video explains the building blocks of Timeless Lifeskills. Life skills that are essential for success and well-being in the 21st century, and beyond!

MOOC – No Longer Moot

Today, if you wanted to learn computer programming what options would you consider? Would you join a private institution offering this course, or find a part-time course being offered by a prestigious university, or go online to self-study? If you go with the third option you would be spoilt for choice. As a beginner you […]

Gamifying Learning

From time immemorial great ways of learning have been – experience, sharing stories of these experiences, introspection, playing, tinkering, observing, experimenting and trial and error. This is why human species has also been described as Homo fabers – those who love to create and Homo ludens – those who love to play. Imparting learning as […]

Only the Curious Shall Thrive

This is a 5-minute animated overview of my new book, ‘Only the Curious Shall Thrive – Strategies for Lifelong Learners to Formulate Insightful Questions’. The book explains why ability to formulate good questions is especially important in the 21st century and details questioning strategies that can be deployed to achieve learning goals like deeper understanding, […]

Dispositions for Success in the 21st Century

What dispositions does a Next Generation Educated Person need for success in the 21st century? This video gives an overview of Timeless Lifeskills learning module titled ‘Next Generation Educated Person’ available here –

Learning Theories – Overview and Synthesis

What is a Learning Theory? How do humans construct meaning and what motivates us to learn is what learning theories postulate. As our understanding of ourselves changes, be it because of advances in neural science, psychology, sociology, or changes in the environment like availability of abundant information or threat to our very survival, our view […]

Learning Experience and Cognitive Processing Theory

The following graphic sums-up how knowledge of cognitive processing theory can help us gain deeper understanding. The graphic is based on learning framework suggested by Howard Gardner. A topic or discipline should be introduced from multiple perspectives, with different analogies and diverse representations because learners have different types of intelligences (Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences theory). Assessment […]

Thoughts on Thought Leadership in Education

My thoughts on ‘Thought Leadership’, especially in the context of education. Leadership is about influencing others and in the case of Thought Leadership in Education, I believe, it is about influencing others with your ideas of constitutes good education. This thinking has direct bearing on me because I am keen on influencing others about how […]

NextGen Learning Platform

The NextGen Learning Platforms should facilitate – Curation, Contextualization, Collective Wisdom, Conversations and Personalization. Ideally the platform should have these features built-in, but there are always new third-party tools coming up that perform these functions better. Hence, either the platform should have the capability to integrate new third-party tools. Even without a learning platform that […]

Behavioural Economics and Learning Theory

Economics is better defined as a study of incentives that guide or determine human behaviour. Nobel Laureate, Daniel Kahneman, laid down the foundation of behavioural economics. Elinor Ostrom work on Social Commons got her a Nobel. Behavioural Economics and Social Commons view is the new direction economics is taking and both these trends can also […]

Teachers or Learner Facilitators?

Can we distinguish the ‘functions’ of a good teacher from the ‘form’ of a teacher (form vs function – a table has certain essential functions but can take many forms). If so, can the ‘functions’ of a teacher be delivered in ‘forms’ beyond what we usually conceive of as a ‘teacher’? I recently visited some […]

Guns, Germs and Steel…Digital Divide and Self-learning Skills

Guns, Germs and Steel… what next? According to Prof Jared Diamond, author of the book ‘Guns, Germs and Steel’, roots of inequality amongst human societies lie not in superiority of one gene pool over another, instead guns, germs and steel determine inequality. Natural geographical advantages made agriculture possible in some areas of earth like in […]

Ideas for Helping Children Learn Deep Thinking Skills – At Home

– Encourage children to self-evaluate their skills and progress they are making, whether at studies, sports or even a video game – Have discussions where they can justify their self-beliefs. Give alternate perspectives to facilitate deeper thinking. Explain possible downstream consequences of different options. – For these discussions think of topics that are topical, fun […]

Visual Fluency Skills & Problem Solving

LIST OF GOOD LEARNING RESOURCES FOR 21ST CENTURY TRAINERS AND LEARNERS I will share resources that are relevant for 21st century skills and will keep adding to my list.1. Solving Problems with Pictures – Books by Dan Roam 21st century skill covered: Visual Communication , Problem Solving Books: The Back of the Napkin, Unfolding the […]

20th vs 21st Century Education – The Difference

20th century education was focused on providing basic cognitive skills and a stockpile of knowledge. You chose an area where job possibilities were bright, gathered knowledge and were set for life. Today you don’t change several jobs you change several careers! 21st century education needs to be different because rate of change is so rapid […]

Saber Tooth Curriculum

This video is based on the book, ‘The Saber Tooth Curriculum’ by J Abner Peddiwell. The story highlights why it is essential to acquire new skills when the context or the conditions change, but how we resist change because it is difficult to change our mindset.

The Thinking Ladder

The Thinking Ladder In the Bloom’s Taxonomy, Knowledge, Comprehension and Application can be considered as Basic Thinking skills and Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation can be considered as higher order thinking skills. Here is how I think the thinking skills ladder looks like:

Learning to Be

From an agrarian age we moved to the age of information, then to the age of knowledge and now we are in the age of intelligence. What next? My take, ‘age of wisdom’! I think ‘learning to be’ is probably THE most important timeless life skill. In its connotation it is similar to the inscription […]

Musing about Thinking-2

Edward de Bono distinguishes between ‘what is’ or judgment type of thinking with ‘what can be’ type of thinking. He coined the term ‘Lateral Thinking’ and advocates that ‘what can be’ type of thinking is imperative for ‘designing’ the future. Lateral thinking is ‘idea creativity’ and is thinking that is concerned with changing ideas, perception […]

Musing about Thinking-1

Why Thinking Skills = To Solve a Problem or to Take a Decision (or even to think of a new Problem!) Thinking = Being aware of, and challenging our inherent Assumptions / Perceptions + Figuring out Alternatives + Weighing Alternatives + Choosing Optimal Alternative Being Aware of, and Challenging Assumptions/Perceptions + Finding Alternatives = Creative […]

Learning to Think

UNESCO’s Report on education for the 21st century titled ‘Learning – The Treasure Within’ says that education throughout life is based upon four pillars – ‘ Learning to Know’, ‘Learning to Do’, ‘Learning to Live Together’ and ‘Learning to Be’. (UNESCO Report I am of the opinion ‘Learning to Think’ is a very important constituent […]