Speaking at a recent meeting of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, Google's Education Evangelist Jaime Casap said, "We have education set up as an individual sport, but the digitalised world requires collaboration – it's a team-based sport."
Focussing on teamwork and collaboration-based learning will better prepare the students of today with the skills for the future of work tomorrow, Nord Anglia Education’s education team programme manager Stacey Carmichael said.
“Education ought to be reshaped to be less of a lonely road for students. When you think about schooling today, almost every student goes through years of rigorous education focussed on their own individual results,” she said.
“Yet we know with the ever-changing future of work and introduction of automation they will go on to work in careers where collaboration is king and projects are increasingly team-based.”
Ms Carmichael said the challenge for schools is how to “walk the talk”.
Ms Carmichael said her role in NAE’s dedicated education team allows her to do just that. She manages the development of programmes on Global Campus, the organisation’s online platform where all 53,000 of their students connect, learn and interact with each other through collaborative projects.
“Thousands of Nord Anglia Education students engage with each other online each year,” Ms Carmichael said.
“We [NAE] believe we learn better when we learn together. We make it an active part of everyday learning in school.”
By connecting online across the globe, NAE students can engage in unique ways across their curriculum. Every Global Campus activity is designed to extend and enrich the existing education offer in our schools. They are also made to be relevant, engaging and fun.
“Our students love a good challenge, so there are abundant opportunities for children of all ages to take part in friendly competitions on Global Campus. They use it to follow up on collaborative activities and NAE events such as regional festivals, sports events or global expeditions happening offline,” Ms Carmichael said.
Global Campus inspires other 21st century skills, such as digital savviness. Education and tech are increasingly intertwined, and more computers and portable devices are being used in classrooms. When used correctly as a learning tool, EdTech is a major help, not a harm.
The platform also helps develop global mindedness by connecting students with peers around the world, so they can learn from each other and consider different points of view.
Thousands of students are involved in Global Campus, with thousands of posts every year connected to various projects and initiatives.
Looking at the last academic year, 5000 students voted on the Photographers of the Year page, more than 870 students posted in the Hack the Tube challenge, more than 440 students asked a question in the Ask the Artist project and 47 schools joined the Creative Writing Competition.
Global Campus is also home to Global Library, which promotes books all NAE students, parents and teachers are encouraged to read and discuss, including “Malala’s Magic Pencil” by Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai and “The Breadwinner” by Deborah Ellis.
Ms Carmichael said students can achieve much more working together than working alone, adding that NAE’s Global Campus project was an example of leveraging scale to transform education.