What’s caught my eye in the news this week?
- The Education and Employers report Drawing the Future has been published and as always makes for interesting reading. Drawing the Future gets children to think about what they want to be when they’re older. 20,000 children aged 7-11 years were asked to draw themselves in their future career and being a You Tube star isn’t uncommon. The report’s main findings include:
- The patterns of jobs chosen by seven-year-olds mirror those selected by 17-year olds
- Gender stereotyping about jobs is set from a young age
- Family, TV, radio and film have the biggest influence on children’s choices
The report also found that children’s career aspirations have little in common with projected workforce needs, which could have serious implications for the UK’s economy and there is a need for greater access to career role models from a young age.
The report found that children in developing countries were far more aspirational in their career ambitions. Boys in the UK aimed to be footballers or YouTube stars but their counterparts in Uganda and Zambia wanted to be doctors or teachers.
- Macquarie Dictionary has named the 2017 word of the year as ‘Milkshake Duck’, despite being made up of two words. This unusual term was born in the twittersphere and describes an overnight social media sensation whose viral support rapidly dissolves with closer scrutiny. It is attributed to a viral tweet by Ben Ward, a cartoonist who used Milkshake Duck to describe debates online. He is better known as @pixelatedboat,
- Can skipping lead to better behaviour in schools? Pete Thompson is a skipping world record holder (110 crossovers in 1 minute) and he has been passing on his skills to children and says that skipping promotes good behaviour and exercise. Take a look at Pete in action:
- Why not have your own bank at school? Kirton Primary School in Boston has its own school bank and currency to help children understand how to manage their money. See the blog from This Is Money too – ‘Games, shops and even their own currency! How children as young as five are learning about finance‘
- Many educators are furious with government plans for compulsory baseline tests of literacy, numeracy and behaviour in the first six weeks of primary school. Child development experts say that the report Bold Beginnings should be scrapped because it is based on flawed evidence.
- Did you know that 2018 is officially the Year of Engineering and will see a national drive in all corners of the country to inspire the young people who will shape our future.
- Sexist language is so prevalent in schools and society that one school has decided to put sexist abuse on the curriculum. Find out more about what Nottingham Free School are doing.
- Primary schools are being asked by the National Literacy Trust to trial lessons in identifying ‘fake news’. The News Wise programme will help teachers empower their Key Stage 2 pupils to navigate the news. News Wise will be free to schools and will provide teachers with a suite of curriculum-based lesson plans, online resources and exciting workshops.
In this digital age, children who can’t question and determine the reliability of the information they find online will be hamstrung – at school, at work and in life. Worryingly, our research shows that this is a reality for far too many children across the UK. Working with the Guardian Foundation, PSHE Association and Google, we will help children develop the critical literacy skills they need to survive and thrive in a digital world.
Register your interest here.