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 It’s a place to learn interpersonal skills that will never become outdated—like how to collaborate, resolve conflict, clearly communicate ideas and teach others.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


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