How to teach Gen Z to be Collaborative, Innovative and Responsive

Monday, February 06, 2017

When I was eight years old, my third-grade teacher, Ms. Calov, taught me to be an inquisitive learner. Through her contagious enthusiasm, she turned me from an ordinary kid who did only what was required, to a perceptive student who asked for more projects and always connected what I learned to the world around me.

The kinds of soft skills I learned from Ms. Calov are increasingly important for Gen Z, the generation cohort after millennials. To be prepared for the jobs of today and tomorrow, these students need to be collaborative, innovative and responsive to their environment. Here's a look at how today's teachers are fostering curiosity, creativity and other skills in their students, with help from technology.

- Mark McCrindle

Encouraging collaboration

School is no longer just a place to learn math, science and writing. It’s a place to learn interpersonal skills that will never become outdated—like how to collaborate, resolve conflict, clearly communicate ideas and teach others. Technology can encourage this kind of interaction. For example, since Gen Z is the first digital-native generation, teachers are asking students for help using technology and to show their peers how to use new tools. Students are working on group projects when they’re in separate physical locations, developing their ability to communicate through written feedback and explain the thinking behind their suggestions.

Encourage lifelong learning and innovative thinking

Teachers today are encouraging students to have a love of learning and adopt an entrepreneurial mindset, so they can adapt to new careers and industries. The average employee tenure in the U.S. is 4.2 years, a decline from 4.6 years two years prior. In Australia, we’re experiencing a similar effect where employees are staying in jobs for a shorter duration—the Australian average is three years. This means Gen Z will have 17 different jobs in their life, and they’ll need to continue to learn new skills and how to use new tools as they progress in their careers. By designing learning tasks that have a real-world application, teachers are engaging their students as problem finders and problem solvers—roles that are crucial in any job.

Foster an adaptive mindset that’s ready for change

As the economy shifts and new jobs like VR engineers and cognitive computer analysts emerge, the next generation will need to be able to learn quickly and connect the dots between related topics. To teach these skills, many teachers are “flipping” learning —asking students to reflect on global issues and synthesize information from videos, podcasts and written material, instead of simply assigning a chapter in a textbook.

Six decades later, I still remember Ms. Calov. Her inspiration reminds me of a Mother Teresa quote: “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” Ms. Calov created many ripples by fostering a love of learning and empowering a community of learners. But with technology, every teacher can teach students lifelong skills to carry them through their careers.

Learn more by watching Mark’s recorded talk from Education on Air.

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


entrepreneurs of today speaker snapshot change crime mateship forecast trends analyst housing social research Real Estate Institute of Victoria hills etiquette parents VET energy cold fresh brand Christmas presents tv curiosity trend tuesday social analysis property demographic transformations click Generation Y product Skilling know the times Love housing trends infographic wall Aussies men ACF2017 micro darwin list census 2016 Tuesday Trend moreton bay school focus group friendship sydneycity New South Wales networking TED talk ideas young australians cultural diversity salary Macquarie University micro apartments NSW qualitative research conference presentation families Willowdale younger generations teach The ABC of XYZ results identity volunteering data toys tableau demographic trends award winner global retail Adelaide Australian Home charities 2016 census shbc relational winter research report baby boomers national private wealth Sydney population data analyst ferry school students mccrindle research norwest research data entrepreneur do people still change their surname after marriage? South Australia lalor park holiday Financial Planning Association growth Australian demographics volunteer high density living food bank mining boom 2016 census results jobs Australian Census Engineering Manager greatness princess charlotte surnames census data environment organisations investor study report office opening megatrends Scouts career Channel Seven Mount Annan-Currant Hill innovation data visualisation prince george Business analysis community event owning a home hello fresh wealth jobs of the future outsourcing kate middleton builders social researchers professional speaker forecasting SMSF "know the times" local communities event impact apartments collaborative population growth facts video travel safe research pack Understanding and Engaging with Generation Z sydneysider gen z Australian Population financial independence personalities screenagers affordability money brand experience cars New Zeland gen alpha the average aussie digital growth of sydney Crime Rates collaboration leadersip NT brisbane urban living repayments shopper's pick Kiwi narcissism Northern Territory tertiary education Hornsby Shire Council goals gig economy social shifts australian social research English Births TEDx Speaker personal growth the lucky country healthy future professional development emerging trends communicate water demographer university care support potts point consumerism summer community engagement weekly earnings christmas 2017 McCridle rain small business Word Up Mark McCrindle in the media shopping divorce rate family The Daily Edition communication TED surname SA investment overcast baby names australia report dare to dream optus my business awards staying in ageing deloitte sector Merry Christmas World Water Day sydney property market politics royal house priorities government innovative staff organisational culture entertainment 2014 Sydney sun meetings charity cancelling plans transport wedding suburban living winter blues nativity scene dreams presentation gig ashley mckenzie business index WA religion language neutral bay friends futurist rich home coffee breakfast optimistic speakers pack grandparents Queensland culture Lower Hunter Region Northern beaches Event national wealth 2012 woolworths generation royal baby food social researcher bondi social impact office space hornsby new york times changing face of sydney Vocational education Deaths acf15 2015 wealth and income royal influence employment keynote speaker Australian Families alpha clothing emerging technologies authenticity land of the middle class litter 1994 online shopping sports spend australian 2017 teachers wealth inequality hopes What is food insecurity? sector wide learn cancel plans Tasmania media activity trends of 2017 gold coast Australian communities future proof generation Z conferences employmee earnings global follow house prices celebration china hunger System's Architect in the media Wellington education research presentations tea 1980 Population Clock travelling wellbeing culturally diverse sydney metro not-for-profit vegemite program skills unaffordable media release financial cultural diveristy education sector vegetarian google for education education business cooking mover and shaker car in depth interviews medicine gender maiden names who is generation z the changing face of Melbourne USA housing market stay home low density Elderslie-Harrington park state financial dreams ease of travel australians staying home more year 7 Performance Sentiment Index Assistant Store Manager workforce urban conference speaker christianity mortgage TEDx forum baby names Netflix indonesia visualisation conference speakers city millionth pharmacy contiki education future report New Zealand christian focus groups urban taskforce learner Christmas data 10 years researcher happy holidays affordable growing population VIC global financial crisis census results belief sector wide study Valentine’s Day wages keynote IT Specialists engage society trends Royals wealth and income distribution emerging generations Jura Australia shifts online food insecurity internet holidays digital economy selfie NFP event national crime rates debt Queensland: QLD award paying to work future of work social change Duchess of Cambridge new office renter of the future local community social moderators guide home owner marriage offenders cost of living hills shire thrive insights property price entrepreneurial 24,000,000 the hills group session residents Christmas lunch 24 million 2013 graphs 2009 resource statistics living #censusfail capital cities volunteering public holiday marketing social media property development Australia street renting father's day resilience wolloomooloo tips supply and demand twentyseventeen public speaking ACF population map workplace culture future university degree screenage seasons Financial Planning Week geomapping environmental scanning sydney speaker DIY Australia Day schools real global generation financial planning 2020 australian communities forum parenting mythbusters rental stress Christmas day 40 million aged care puzzle EFF Hills Shire Council school satisfaction australia McCrindle Speaker newspaper leadership workshop live the dream census fail wage home ownership sydney event donation Bathburst millennials Wagga Wagga intern logan daily commute ACT townhouses events india urban living index office tuesday daily telegraph Australian Dream sydney hills australian communities trends report domestic divorce proactive victoria millenials village commuting average Australian speajer apartment earn social life Hunter Valley REIV Conference NBRS Architecture faux-cilise society hobart Christmas research Channel 7 cartodb 1968 visual generation alpha baby name predictions names omnibus Caregiver survey students maiden house price rise Research Executive not for profit research Australian Trends responsive insight world retirement seasons greetings business performance casual young people educated wealth distribution unemployment group shopping centre ashley fell baby boom Research Director trends pyrmont public speaker children coffee lovers Andrew Duffin Real Estate future-proof goal NBRS McCrindle Speakers cost social enquiry Australia Day 2017 economy world youth day research on coffee employmer high density apartments communities news trades social commentator internships Lower Hunter annual income Do It Yourself GPO stats demographics social analyst waverton Canberra cloudy days couple work-life population milestone Christmas in Australia baby name chairty bus tattoos ipswich lifestyle rise of local Sydney Lifestyle Study financial fears ABS local Sydney keynote speaker choice workers customer Western Australia VET sector future proofing anzac mccrindle easy rider Christchurch February 16 women public transport commute socialites property market generations households work dessert Christmas day weather work mates train demography Northern Beaches Christian School not for profit giving grave decision careers research visualisation socialising mentor Gen X dreaming marrickville blaxland Social Trend interactive Black Friday in Australia poor menai census suburbs commuters aussie culture faith fears Christmas season SRE poker master James Ward monarchy mythbusting mobile technology global generations consumer research services Maxim Accounting google Retail rule keeper learning participants education future recap meals Gen Z Expert baby names report mother's day child care educhat high density youth earning dream christmas Australian community trends experience population year 12 ACT Report perth bureau youth unemployment eliane miles HSC Generation X case study mccrindle tea student the hills shire challenge Black Friday area work from home sunny days social lives quote Aussie Kirsten Brewer housing growth housing affordability rising house prices happiness slideshare generational trends aged care employers sunburnt country the australian dream social commentary trends of 2016 rent data finance increasing densification sustainable infographic faux-ciliser pharmacies teleworking CBD ACF17 australian real estate professional Northern Beaches DESTEL income Australian Bureau of Statistics communications house price social issues economic mccrinlde debate research Territory Australian schools typical australian middle class Geoff Brailey 1995 easter trend leader high school Mark McCrindle 2016 TDE Financial Planning Association of Australia 23 million urban development life investing spirituality Charlotte future of shopping Australian Communities Trends Christmas Stats financial future church media cancelling event teacher survey design REIV National Conference royal family ethnography relevant states Gen Y January 26th Education Future Forum professional presenters marriages non profit post rationalism volunteers thought leadership huffington post storytelling schools students Black Friday Sales define average sydneysider 1975 US media commentary manly learning styles average aussie budget Jura Coffee sydneysiders weather infographics teaching leadership eliane donate crows nest professional services Wodonga FOMO training cash baby name trends analysis optus ACF 2016 social trends household balance Sydney’s south west equip Res Vis ageing population PSI Cobbitty-Leppington workshop engagement suburb Tuesday Trends sentiments brands workplace showreel HR Work place mccrindle in the media SMART Myth cica internship faux-cilising CPI motivate JOMO criminal demographic Sydney Hills Business Chamber market research capital city sydney market plans Australians australian community trends report buildings going out TAS panel long weekend global generaion baby future of education purpose NEETs ultimo christmas trees the great screenage story community nfp FPA McCrindle Keynote Speakers publication