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Life Skills Cannot Be Automated

Posted: January 28, 2020

By Jeremy Andrews, Life Skills Advocate


It’s absurd to imagine a school that wouldn’t teach math, English, science, or history throughout the week. It’s even more absurd to imagine a school that would leave out one of these core subjects altogether. So why is it okay to not teach essential life skills like communication, decision making, and goal setting? If we wish to develop prepared, empathetic, and respectful citizens, then a life skills education is as essential as any other subject.

As technological advances progress, computers are beginning to replace the need for human knowledge in certain areas. Calculators solve complex math problems in seconds, a simple web search can answer any history or science question in just a few clicks, and spell-checking programs ensure we spell words correctly (and can even correct the grammatical structure of our sentences). Life skills education, however, cannot be automated. A computer isn’t capable of helping people resolve interpersonal disputes or handle their emotions. A computer cannot teach you how to maintain proper eye contact or teach someone to be empathetic (it can have quite the opposite effect, actually). In other words, a life skills education is just as important as what is today considered core content, and will only become more indispensable as we move further into the future.

While technology is handling a lot of the problems and tasks that were once left entirely on people to handle, it’s also gradually deteriorating interpersonal communication skills and further incentivizing anti-social tendencies. Young people are having a harder and harder time learning how to communicate effectively in person, how to resolve differences and disputes, and they are having a difficult time taking charge of their own lives. The solution to this is a life skills education.

Overcoming Obstacles offers a comprehensive set of curriculum designed to prepare young people for all of the challenges life will present. It’s free now and forever and is becoming more and more relevant every day.