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The Future Belongs to the Curious

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calebgardner

A few weeks ago I saw a video that really stuck with me. It’s from a site called Skillshare, which focuses on a new form of education made available by advances in technology: the ability to “learn anything from anyone, anywhere.”  Through online forums, Skillshare members create a worldwide community that connects anyone who wants to teach a skill with anyone who wants to learn it.

The video is called “The Future Belongs to the Curious,” and it celebrates how we are all programmed with curiosity from birth. This curiosity drives us to do amazing things, and those of us who can hold on to it throughout life have a competitive advantage. As a parent, the celebration of learning for its own sake is definitely something I can get behind

When I watched this, I couldn’t help but relate it to an article that recently ran in The Atlantic, “The Freelance Surge is the Industrial Revolution of Our Time,” which explored how the surging independent workforce is changing the way people view career paths. Skillshare and sites like it are helping this boom along, because they allow anyone with an idea of what they want to do to learn how to do it, regardless of education or background. It really is a life-hacking age, and those who are willing to think outside the box – those who are curious, in Skillshare’s terminology – are going to continue to have a competitive advantage over others.

The trend has made me wonder how to set our son up for success in a time when traditional forms of education are becoming both very needed and increasingly irrelevant. It’s hard to get anywhere career-wise in the United States anymore without a college education – that is, if you’re looking for a traditional nine-to-five job. If you want to freelance, however, you have many more options. In fact, I know many people who received their college degrees only to go into a freelancing in a technical field that had nothing to do with their education.

In the last few years, I’ve been conflicted about the role of higher education in the workforce. As someone who received both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree, it obviously played a big role in my life, and helped to set me up for success. I also feel like it has made me a more well-rounded person and global citizen. After all, when else is one going to study Middle Eastern History in order to understand geopolitical conflicts if not in college?

But I’m very sympathetic to the burgeoning entrepreneurial cultural that says you can make something of yourself without going through the usual hoops. Part of the reason is that I’m still paying off my student loans, and will be for some time. With higher education costs going nowhere but up, forcing my son down the same path is beginning to seem antiquated.

I think the answer, for us at least, is going to be what Skillshare celebrates: curiosity. Curiosity can be explored both inside the higher education world and outside. I enjoyed exploring it within, and wouldn’t change my experience for anything. But if Miles wants to experience it outside of the traditional college experience, or with a mix of traditional education and personal exploration, I would support him.

The important thing is that Miles is a life-long learner. Curiosity means that he should be always seeking more knowledge – not to prove anything to anyone, but for the enjoyment of knowledge itself.

What about you? How are you setting your children up for success in the new economy? How are you making them life-long learners?

More Posts From Caleb

Caleb Gardner is an amateur father and husband who writes at The Exceptional Man and dabbles in photography, design, and music. When listening to the cacophony of modern-day America, Caleb prefers a side of Scotch. He calls Chicago home, and in winter, less-nice things.

5 Featured Comments

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  • kh1467

    Kelly from KikuPaper says: Featured

    It is an interesting and thought-provoking article. Education, careers and life in general are changing at a phenomenal speed. The future is daunting for parents and children. But even right now for people in mid-life who do not have a strong sense of self and purpose, it is easy to feel left behind in this rapidly changing world. Curiosity needs to be accompanied by fearlessness, the willingness to try and open-mindedness.

    2 years ago

  • OnlyOriginalsByAJ

    AJ Marsden from OnlyOriginalsByAJ says: Featured

    I'm a professor at a small liberal arts university and I think higher education is incredibly important. However, it's very challenging for kids now. They end up taking out a huge amount in student loans and are pretty much forced to take a job (any job!) after they graduate so they can start paying their loans off. In my classes, I urge my students to find something that they really love or at least like a lot. And to pursue it. I always say, "Imagine spending the rest of your life doing something you hate. Doing something only because you get paid to do it. You'll end up being a hateful, bitter person. Find what you love and go after it!" Years later I've had students come back to me and thank me for urging them to pursue their dreams and not just the money trail.

    2 years ago

  • TwinkleStarCrafts

    Judith and Raymond from AnnaOliveDesigns says: Featured

    Caleb, I read your post with great interest as I have five children and often think about their strengths and weaknesses and how I can best guide their start into an ever-changing working world. I think the best way that any of us as parents can do that is to lead by example. I have a Bachelor's in business and completed about 1/3 of the work toward my MBA. I stopped working toward my MBA because I didn't feel that the work was really enhancing my role as a senior buyer for a manufacturing firm. I found much more fulfillment and joy opening an Etsy shop and would rather spend my time working on that. As it relates to my children, I freely tell them that I have made the choices that I have in order to pursue the kind of work that matters to me and I want them to do the same. Praising your children when they show you that they are being creative, curious and willing to learn new concepts will go a long way, too.

    2 years ago

  • maryrichmonddesign

    Mary Richmond from maryrichmonddesign says: Featured

    Thanks for this thoughtful and well written post. I am nearing 60 and both education and jobs have changed so much since I was young that I find it both intriguing and alarming. We will be paying off our daughters' educations for the rest of our lives--as will they--and neither of them has found satisfying work in their fields. Everything is changing very quickly--both the way jobs are structured and the way that people are working with technology. In many ways this is a good thing because it gives people the freedom to create a life not even imaginable when my parents were young. I think that colleges are going to have to change to stay relevant--offering shorter programs perhaps instead of full degrees. I truly believe in the old fashioned education that had nothing to do with getting a job but everything to do with being a well educated, well rounded citizen of the world. Your post brings up many of these interesting issues. Thanks again.

    2 years ago

  • ArchetypalTheatre

    Sarah Pogue from ArchetypalTheatre says: Featured

    I got a B.A because it seemed like the logical next step. It was a fun four years, but very expensive and unnecesary for the work I choose to do now! I wish somone had helped me think of other educational options because, even at 18 years old, I knew I was interested art, herbal healing, and spiritual/energy work - not distribution requirements for a liberal arts degree.Next, I tried a couple of Master's programs (art therapy and MFA), but found it to be like fitting a square peg in a round hole. Unfortunately, I have spent alot of time and money to realize this! I am glad that I can help my daughter explore some wider options one day and am pleased to see this viewpoint validated more and more in the mainstream. And if her curiousity leads her to a tradtitional college degree, that is just fine. Thanks for this thought provoking article.

    2 years ago

  • MegansMenagerie

    Megan from MegansMenagerie says:

    Great post!!!

    2 years ago

  • kh1467

    Kelly from KikuPaper says: Featured

    It is an interesting and thought-provoking article. Education, careers and life in general are changing at a phenomenal speed. The future is daunting for parents and children. But even right now for people in mid-life who do not have a strong sense of self and purpose, it is easy to feel left behind in this rapidly changing world. Curiosity needs to be accompanied by fearlessness, the willingness to try and open-mindedness.

    2 years ago

  • OnlyOriginalsByAJ

    AJ Marsden from OnlyOriginalsByAJ says: Featured

    I'm a professor at a small liberal arts university and I think higher education is incredibly important. However, it's very challenging for kids now. They end up taking out a huge amount in student loans and are pretty much forced to take a job (any job!) after they graduate so they can start paying their loans off. In my classes, I urge my students to find something that they really love or at least like a lot. And to pursue it. I always say, "Imagine spending the rest of your life doing something you hate. Doing something only because you get paid to do it. You'll end up being a hateful, bitter person. Find what you love and go after it!" Years later I've had students come back to me and thank me for urging them to pursue their dreams and not just the money trail.

    2 years ago

  • ShopWords

    Ellen from ShopResource says:

    Fantastic post, I've been saying that we are switching from a jobs-based world to a skills and ideas-based world. Einstein said that imagination is more important than knowledge, and I would add that both of them together are the key to success in any endeavor.

    2 years ago

  • jojosvintagecupboard

    jojosvintagecupboard from jojosvintagecupboard says:

    Wonderful article! When you do what you love, everything else usually falls into place. I can not imagine having a career that I hate. When you keep an open mind and heart it is easier to figure out what you should be doing, and when you find it, it just feels right, natural.

    2 years ago

  • guziks

    Stephanie from Phylogeny says:

    I just had this conversation last night with one of my dearest friends from grade school. Both of us have been lifelong learners with a keen curiosity, which is perhaps why we're still dear friends 20 years on. She and I spent our school days reading our lessons, listening intently to our teachers and absorbing everything we could. After school, we were supported and encouraged to explore our nearby streams for bugs, smash open rocks in case there was a lovely geode inside (there never was, but we kept hope alive), and learn introductory phrases from foreign languages on the computer. As adults, not only do we continue to strive to be curious about anything and everything (particularly in the world of crafting), our higher degrees do not define us. We were raised to fall within the normal parameters of higher education, but we were always encouraged to seek out other opportunities and experiences that have shaped who we have become.

    2 years ago

  • volkerwandering

    Jess from volkerwandering says:

    Thought provoking! I think it's important to do what you love, but also never stop learning. If you push yourself, you will always find something new.

    2 years ago

  • AlisaDesign

    AlisaDesign from AlisaDesign says:

    Great article!

    2 years ago

  • HomeStudio

    Stef and Mark from HomeStudio says:

    Thanks Caleb. Very thought provoking indeed!

    2 years ago

  • HibouCards

    Anne-Claire R. from HibouDesigns says:

    I always look forward to your articles as they are interesting each time :) My son Jack is 5 and a half and has an endless curiosity for everything! It has been such an amazing experience to watch him explore and learn about the world. First it was trains and everything with wheels, then dinosaurs, then big cats and wolves and now he has extended his interest to the entire animal kingdom after I bought him an animal encyclopedia! I know it was very old fashion of me to get him an actual paper encyclopedia knowing that he also has an iPad (offered by his grandparents for Xmas!) with an internet access which puts the world at his fingertips.... But we have been trying to combine both old fashioned and new technologies to satisfy his curiosity. I feel like we had to do this in order for him to know that both exist and that there are many different ways to access information. I like to know he knows what an "index" is in a book and what it's used for and that we can seat down together to read about all the animals in this big book. But we also enjoy doing research online and getting all riled up by incredible videos of big cats pouncing on a prey or snakes in the wild... To us as parents it's all a question of balance and presenting Jack with a wide variety of channels for learning :) As for this studies well... first we'll get through elementary school and the basics and then we'll see!

    2 years ago

  • samsnatural

    Sam's Natural from SamsNatural says:

    Wow this was great! We're all curious - and we all hope to live inspired (hopefully) !

    2 years ago

  • DecadesOfVintage

    DecadesOfVintage from DecadesOfVintage says:

    such an interesting article

    2 years ago

  • Elyseeart

    Lavinia Voicu from Elyseeart says:

    Fantastic-cosmic article! Congrat!

    2 years ago

  • DeborahJoyDesigns

    Deborah from DeborahJoyDesigns says:

    This was a very intriguing post, I'm off to check out the site.

    2 years ago

  • RetroRevivalBoutique
  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections from KettleConfections says:

    Business and the marketplace is changing so quickly that schools are merely teaching the technical reading, math,and writing skills, and very little about how our civilization works. And so every year, many educated people graduating without any real opportunity to fully apply their skill sets. The system needs to evolve so that education is a combination of in classroom learning and apprenticeships in the real world, we shouldn't have to make kids wait till they're 21 to participate in the economy.

    2 years ago

  • blainedesign

    Karen Brown says:

    I agree with what Ellen says, that we are switching from a "jobs-based" economy to a skills and ideas based economy. In certain moments in history -- like the beginning of the microcomputer industry -- it absolutely did not matter what level of education you had, the only question was, "Can you do great work?" Given what college costs today and the degree to which many people will need to be resourceful in their own lives and communities, the discovery of positive, creative solutions for everyday living might outweigh everything else. When I look at the collective genius on Etsy, I honestly feel we could solve every problem we have, because people here are working with passion and continuing to make new discoveries and innovations everyday.

    2 years ago

  • GBSCreations

    Sandra Bruce from GBSCreations says:

    This is great!

    2 years ago

  • LoveButtons

    Julia K Walton from LoveButtons says:

    Thought-provoking article! In the UK many more people are attending universities than did so in the past, but there aren't the jobs available at the end of their studies. I think that life long learning is important, too. There are not many 'jobs for life' now, and flexibility and the ability to learn throughout our lives is becoming every more necessary. If you choose to work for yourself, you can pick and choose the relevant skill sets to suit your particular needs.

    2 years ago

  • iammieCLAYshop

    iammieCLAYshop from iammieCLAYshop says:

    Interesting post. :)

    2 years ago

  • CTCosta

    Chris Costa from CTCostaPhotography says:

    Great post, thanks for sharing.

    2 years ago

  • sirenjewels

    Melissa from sirenjewels says:

    That's a great video, Higher education is important , so is keeping our childish enthusiasm for learning about the things we love :)

    2 years ago

  • TwinkleStarCrafts

    Judith and Raymond from AnnaOliveDesigns says: Featured

    Caleb, I read your post with great interest as I have five children and often think about their strengths and weaknesses and how I can best guide their start into an ever-changing working world. I think the best way that any of us as parents can do that is to lead by example. I have a Bachelor's in business and completed about 1/3 of the work toward my MBA. I stopped working toward my MBA because I didn't feel that the work was really enhancing my role as a senior buyer for a manufacturing firm. I found much more fulfillment and joy opening an Etsy shop and would rather spend my time working on that. As it relates to my children, I freely tell them that I have made the choices that I have in order to pursue the kind of work that matters to me and I want them to do the same. Praising your children when they show you that they are being creative, curious and willing to learn new concepts will go a long way, too.

    2 years ago

  • WingedWorld

    Vickie Moore from WingedWorld says:

    Despite the reality of high student loan debt, I think a college education is still worthwhile in so many ways. Some people might see my art degree as useless, but I use it in my professional life for art-related work assignments, and I get so much enjoyment from it in my personal life because I can appreciate art on so many different levels. That being said, a college education must be supplemented with real life experiences. As this article says, nothing beats learning about new skills and ideas from other people. The world is a fascinating place. We should learn from our children, and always hang on to our curiosity.

    2 years ago

  • sleepyking

    Savannah May from sleepyking says:

    Ahh I love Caleb's articles. Always wonderful.

    2 years ago

  • jelenamirkov

    Jelena from CeruleanBird says:

    Excellent text. This is a story that's actually always been alive for those who want it. People living imagination and a restless spirit just as a child always look around and learn ways in 1000, watching others as they work, what they say, asking everything and everyone without hesitation. Pages on the Internet like Ted Talk, eHow, and many others with various types of content only to facilitate, accelerate and expand the awareness you can learn.

    2 years ago

  • jelenamirkov

    Jelena from CeruleanBird says:

    But curiosity is not a guarantee for success in business or at least to succeed in business from whom you live, because the global economy ruled by other laws.

    2 years ago

  • mythunderstood

    mythunderstood from mythunderstood says:

    "Amateur Father* lol. I like this post. It's been interesting to see the mindset of my nieces and nephews re: jobs. It *is* skills more than degree. They are not so wrapped up in getting a 9-to-5 or 'climbing the ladder'. Thank God!

    2 years ago

  • sandboxcastle

    H Wang from sandboxcastle says:

    hmmm yeah holding on to that curiosity can be kinda hard - our tendency is to want to know it all and we become kinda know it alls. haha this is a nice reminder that to not know it all is kinda nice - a good thing in fact :)

    2 years ago

  • PetiteCo

    Vanessa from PetiteCo says:

    Such an a amazing and "curious" article, thank you for sharing! :)

    2 years ago

  • CosmicRebirth

    Lisa Kozlosky from CosmicRebirth says:

    This is extremely refreshing to read! It's really difficult to get some of the older generations to think this way but times are changing and so must we. I believe learning hands on and absorbing practical skills are much more important than studying and sitting in lecture. Engaging our bodies with our minds provides a more well rounded education experience. It would be so nice to see communities setting up more projects and events that really bring people together at the local level. It could quench that thirst for curiosity and also encourage people to get out and 'be' in the world.

    2 years ago

  • dottywalker

    Dotty Walker from SewThoughtfulBlanket says:

    Many things to think about. Great article!

    2 years ago

  • uswatsons

    Sylvie Liv from SylvieLiv says:

    Thank you for this super neat article!

    2 years ago

  • maryrichmonddesign

    Mary Richmond from maryrichmonddesign says: Featured

    Thanks for this thoughtful and well written post. I am nearing 60 and both education and jobs have changed so much since I was young that I find it both intriguing and alarming. We will be paying off our daughters' educations for the rest of our lives--as will they--and neither of them has found satisfying work in their fields. Everything is changing very quickly--both the way jobs are structured and the way that people are working with technology. In many ways this is a good thing because it gives people the freedom to create a life not even imaginable when my parents were young. I think that colleges are going to have to change to stay relevant--offering shorter programs perhaps instead of full degrees. I truly believe in the old fashioned education that had nothing to do with getting a job but everything to do with being a well educated, well rounded citizen of the world. Your post brings up many of these interesting issues. Thanks again.

    2 years ago

  • MalibuHues

    Cynthia Wilson from MalibuHues says:

    My husband and I try to be "in the moment" with our children and celebrate their accomplishments and curiosity every day. Years ago a friend told me that his dad( a pilot) had always wished his son would follow in his footsteps. After many attempts at building model planes, flying remote planes, taking his son flying, etc. he gave up on his son ever becoming a pilot. A couple of years later, his son became curious about computer gaming and told his dad that when he grew up he wanted to create computer games for children. From then on, his father continually encouraged and supported him in all his endeavors to reach his goal. As an adult he now creates children's games based on popular animated movies. I have 4 children with varying special needs. After hearing my friend's story I decided to encourage and support my children in whatever they wanted to learn. It did become difficult about 6 years back when my mentally challenged son wanted to be an "artist" (I haven't an artistic bone in my body) but I was determined to help him. I bought him "how to" books in drawing and lots of drawing paper, paint, markers and pencils! Then he became interested in origami and I bought a couple books and origami paper for him. Now at age 11 he loves fun/educational children's computer games and tells me that when he grows up he would like to be an administrator for this type of company. I continue to encourage all my children's curiosities. My 22 year old who is mentally disabled has recently been tested and is actually not considered "severely disabled" any more and wants to work and maybe continue his education. My 8 year old with an auditory disorder wants to be a scientist or astronaut when he grows up. We watch a lot of scientific programs together and he has just about read every space book in the school library. Every day my husband and I are so excited when our 6 year old brings us a book to read or reads by herself. She's catching up on her reading skills after being very ill last year and still tries her best even when she's in pain. I became curious about bead weaving about 5 years ago and now I can't learn new stitches fast enough! I've discovered new friends and new opportunities here on Etsy and now my 6 and 8 year old sometimes join me in looming and stringing. It's such a great feeling to have my children become curious about the art of bead weaving! Thank you so much for your inspiring post. I truly believe that we need to nurture our children's (and our) curiosity while leading them into an uncertain future in careers. I believe that passion for something you love doing can develop into a wonderful and fulfilling life experience. - Cyndi

    2 years ago

  • ArchetypalTheatre

    Sarah Pogue from ArchetypalTheatre says: Featured

    I got a B.A because it seemed like the logical next step. It was a fun four years, but very expensive and unnecesary for the work I choose to do now! I wish somone had helped me think of other educational options because, even at 18 years old, I knew I was interested art, herbal healing, and spiritual/energy work - not distribution requirements for a liberal arts degree.Next, I tried a couple of Master's programs (art therapy and MFA), but found it to be like fitting a square peg in a round hole. Unfortunately, I have spent alot of time and money to realize this! I am glad that I can help my daughter explore some wider options one day and am pleased to see this viewpoint validated more and more in the mainstream. And if her curiousity leads her to a tradtitional college degree, that is just fine. Thanks for this thought provoking article.

    2 years ago

  • ReleafPaper

    Heather from ReleafPaper says:

    I completely agree that higher education is a good foundation, but curiosity and the desire to discover more than we know now is the key to self-growth. Wonderful piece.

    2 years ago

  • GalinAZ

    GalinAZ says:

    Good thoughts and ideas here and I like the concept of Skillshare. I was disappointed though when reviewing what were listed as "skills". I think the traditional education system is still needed to provide the skills of reading, writing and listening and that apprenticeships over a period of time are needed to teach old fashioned skills like carpentry, mechanics, construction and the like. Nothing worth learning is acquired in short soundbites.

    2 years ago

  • BeadCoNet

    Kay Cristal from BeadCoNet says:

    Great article! Thanks for sharing! :-D

    2 years ago

  • baroquedoll

    baroquedoll says:

    you can be curious even at college...well that should be the perfect place to be ! i think higher education is still very important not only for work reasons but also as a life experience, that is - reading and studyin should set your mind free. this said, it's all up to you, of course: many graduates are silly or dull, many un-graduates are 'curious' and skillful.......i love the fact that we can learn on our own - i myself am a self-thought in many things, but college education should be more important, as it was decades ago. we cannot force anyone to be so 'curious' if one just wants to study for some years, and then get their 9-5 job. it's a shame that we pay so much money for college and then it's so difficult to find a job. there's something unfair., something that does NOT work in this system....more meritocracy please. MERITOCRACY is the key....

    2 years ago

  • andichrisman

    Andi Chrisman from acpaintedpages says:

    Nice read, great article!

    2 years ago

  • twentytwotwenty

    twentytwotwenty from twentytwotwenty says:

    What a great post. I agree that although higher education can help someone become a well rounded person, it is not always necessary. Success is subjective- to some it means money & to others happiness & loving what you do. It's ridiculous that college is as expensive as it is in the U.S.

    2 years ago

  • lizworthy

    Liz Worthy from lizworthy says:

    A great way to think about education - thanks! I just checked out the Skillshare offerings in my city - "Design & Execute an Adult Scavenger Hunt" - FUN!

    2 years ago

  • dragonhouseofyuen

    Annette from TheLeveretsNest says:

    thank you Caleb! a good article and a great attitude, especially considering the choices your son may make as he grows up. I applaud your openmindedness :) and see this as the best quality in a parent, - love and acceptance and openmindedness :) the world is what you make of it, and what you look for.

    2 years ago

  • andiespecialtysweets

    Jason and Andie from andiespecialtysweets says:

    Good observations! We're instilling an entrepreneurial, skill-based life education into our children. We want them to be foremost, skilled in looking down the road to predict the tides and get ready for them, while having a core group of skills they excel at. Skills produce confidence ...add a creative mind, and success is sure to follow. If our children are able to do something they really enjoy and are able to pay the bills with, that's successful. We have a few years to go, and we don't even know if traditional university will still be the stand-by, main source of education on the horizon. If there will even be loans? The loans are enough to motivate us to equip our children for another route. We have watched loans completely dictate people's lives for years. And you can learn anything about anything on your own.

    2 years ago

  • EnterpriseAmericana

    Enterprise Americana from EnterpriseAmericana says:

    What a fantastic article, I felt as if those were words I could have wrote. (only I have three little ones) Life long learner. YES!

    2 years ago

  • EnterpriseAmericana
  • oddlobster

    Leah Waig from OfDreamsandDaring says:

    Even though I am not currently in college, I believe that it can be, and is, a valuable experience, whether for those seeking a career that college is instrumental to entering, or those who are still trying to figure out where life is leading them (as I was when I started college, and still am!). For various reasons, I decided to take a hiatus of sorts from college; if I feel that it is "in the cards" for me in the future, I would definitely not be opposed to going again at all. The part about being a "life-long learner" really struck me. I believe that curiosity and a passion for learning about what's important to you are wonderful traits to have. I like to put a little spin on it, myself, by saying that I'm not only learning about topics I find interesting, but also "exploring possibilities." The idea of possibilities is very important to me; it means that there are no such things as true failures, but valuable experiences that we can learn from. I don't believe that learning, through higher-education or not, is just a means to an end. Learning about anything and everything you can, consciously or not, is a life-long process and a beautiful and fascinating journey at that. Thank you for this thought-provoking story!

    2 years ago

  • yqsl66

    Ada Ada from idajewelry66 says:

    Thanks Caleb. Great article!

    2 years ago

  • miriamryburne

    Miriam from Handmadewithloveee says:

    Wonderful article! Thanks for sharing!

    2 years ago

  • LittleWrenPottery

    Victoria Baker from LittleWrenPottery says:

    I think the key to lifelong learning isn't to see it as an activity that ends once school is over. It's an important skill that can see us through our adult life from researching to absorbing knowledge and new ideas. It means that in the long term we're more able to adapt to our changing world.

    2 years ago

  • BZfingers

    BZfingers from BZfingers says:

    Yes, yes, yes, thumbs up for curiosity! I’ve encouraged my children from very early age to explore, to learn, to create. The best way we can teach our children is by example. They are learning from what they see and hear around them. So, we have to be, first, an example to our children and, second, to give them the right environment from which they can learn. Now, if we look at modern education system, we'll see that it‘s in deep crisis and most of schools do not provide a good environment for our children. They gain there some knowledge that probably will be forgotten in a couple of years, and what they see there is aggression, depression, apathy, cruelty and so on. Children need to learn at school about human connection and interaction, they should learn how to care, love, support each other for the benefit of the whole society and each individual in it. Great example is a site called Skillshare mentioned in the article. Wonderful, great sign of a new era coming. We need to learn and encourage our children to learn, but remember that: "Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all" - Aristotle

    2 years ago

  • BCbuzz

    BCbuzz from BCbuzz says:

    Caleb, look closely at the BC and tell me what you think! WIthout curiosity, when we stop seeking answers, we stop evolving. I was just reading about what made us human from the anthropoligical perspective and it was our innovative minds and community spirit, the original global citizens of common consciousness. Great post!

    2 years ago

  • WildRavenStudio

    WildRavenStudio from WildRavenStudio says:

    Fascinating. I love the idea of connecting those who want to learn, with those who can and want to teach. I believe higher education is a personal responsibility...and desire. With rising tuition costs, and limitations with higher learning institutions, I believe the internet will be the wave of the future education. I already LOVE live online workshops and tutorials.

    2 years ago

  • misponko
  • liddysopretty

    liddy sopretty from liddysopretty says:

    Interesting article!!

    2 years ago

  • osdesignstore

    Oliver Sha from osdesignstore says:

    Great Article! I will check out skillshare for sure, thanks!

    2 years ago

  • soveryhappyart

    Diane from soveryhappyart says:

    Thank you so much for this article! It's refreshing, timely, and thought provoking. And most of all I think that you have really hit it on the head with the idea of curiosity! My dad always told me that he didn't really care what I studied in college as long as I contributed and learned to think critically and independently. I feel very fortunate that I had the opportunity to have a college education because it provided me with incredible new experiences and ideas. It was truly enriching and I was someone who absorbed all of it like a sponge. But today you don't necessarily need college or brick and mortar classes to have these experiences. I have had rich exchanges of ideas, have met people from all around the world, and have found new ways of looking at things from Etsy, Facebook, Pinterest, and all other types of online communities. What you do need is passion, motivation, inspiration, and curiosity about the world, community, and people.

    2 years ago

  • ainthatastitch

    Vida Abreu from ainthatastitch says:

    Great article Caleb, and uberlicious video! I think anyone who has a creative career somehow already knew this wave would wash over us. It's an intuitive reality for most of us and passion is a driving force we sometimes take for granted. Own it people! Hopefully one day it will all pay off :) Thanks for sharing!

    2 years ago

  • marieowltoinette

    Marie Owltoinette from marieowltoinette says:

    I love the title of this article...such a true statement!

    2 years ago

  • sadiedesignsca

    Sarah from CAMPandQUARRY says:

    I have a Masters in Landscape Architecture and don't regret any of my eight years in university. In many ways you need this degree to even begin exploring the field of landscape architecture and it's my formal education that has opened up so many possibilities for me (creatively and professionally speaking). I know it's not for everyone, but for me university was an enriching experience that led me directly to the job I'm in now. It was also in my masters program that I began making jewelry and opened my Etsy shop. Pursuing landscape architecture introduced me to the world of laser cutting and encouraged me to find a smaller and more tactile medium to work in in addition to large-scale landscape design. In the end I feel that my university education is exactly what has prepared me to be a life-long learner, and not just because continuing education credits are a requirement of my profession! Thanks for this thought-provoking article!

    2 years ago

  • lacer

    Jo Stafferton from lacer says:

    My children (still primary school aged) go to a school where one of the key things the head teacher says at every new parent induction, is that (and I can't remember the exact figure but it's large) a large percentage of the children going through the school will end up doing jobs in fields that don't even exist yet and I like that attitude and that they need to prepare the children for that, it's one of the reasons why I think their school is special is that acknowledgement as one of the things they encourage is curiosity. As an adult myself, now doing a day job in a field that didn't even really exist when I entered the job market 15 years ago, I totally get the need to be constantly adaptable and willing to learn new things. And as a parent I think one of the best things to do to encourage that life long learning and curiosity in your children is to embody it yourself, if your children see you enjoying learning new things, exploring the world around you, they'll learn that attitude themselves by example. Whereas if they see you stagnating in front of the TV every night . . .

    2 years ago

  • thcreator

    John Spisak says:

    What I think would be awesome is if they designed PS3 games with teachers in them to teach different subjects even college courses to people who wanted to learn. I also think that eventually it will go in this direction anyway and teachers will be a thing of the past . this is sad but very probable .. the bright side to this would be education would be free and with free education comes a much smarter world.

    2 years ago

  • elizenazelie

    Elize Nazelie from ElizeNazelie says:

    I think people need to stop confusing higher education with college. I went through a two year apprenticeship to learn the skills for my freelance job, came out of it with a great education in the field and debt free, working for myself from 22 on and able to support myself and take whatever classes I wanted down the road. I wanted to go to art school to learn more in my medium, but the amount of credit requirements for a degree was a money pit. Now I can take the classes I'm interested in for my own enrichment because the degree is unimportant, and I (and my parents) won't be in debt for the rest of our lives. The beauty of freelancing is that your livelihood is based on your own talent and skills, and not paying for a degree. Yes you need to educate yourself to get those skills, but you can do it in any way that works :)

    2 years ago

  • fibrous

    Thea from fibrous says:

    Higher education at least for me was just the expected "next step". Emotionally I grew a lot, but I didn't end up pursuing the career I studied for. I hope colleges are preparing their students for the new economy by adding classes on entrepreneurship and networking. But encouraging curiosity shouldn't just start at college, for some kids it will start at home, but for others it should start in kindergarten and continue until their senior year. But for school systems focused on tests and teaching kids to obey rules I'm afraid it seems that curiosity is not high on their list of things to foster.

    2 years ago

  • myhideaway

    Mary from myhideaway says:

    This is such an important topic and reminds me of this article on the value of higher education from the New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/atlarge/2011/06/06/110606crat_atlarge_menand The costs of a private education these days are staggering, and it's right that people should question if they're getting their money's worth. But that all depends on your definition of a college education. Do you think it's simply a means to an end (i.e., degree equals successful career) or do you think college teaches you to think outside the box, to be an effective communicator, and as you said, a well-rounded person and global citizen? In response to the question, "Why did we have to buy this book?" the author of the NY article writes, "I could have said, “You’re reading these books because they teach you things about the world and yourself that, if you do not learn them in college, you are unlikely to learn anywhere else.” This reflects a different theory of college, a theory that runs like this: In a society that encourages its members to pursue the career paths that promise the greatest personal or financial rewards, people will, given a choice, learn only what they need to know for success. They will have no incentive to acquire the knowledge and skills important for life as an informed citizen, or as a reflective and culturally literate human being. College exposes future citizens to material that enlightens and empowers them, whatever careers they end up choosing." If we are gravitating as a society toward shorter, tailored degree programs instead of traditional 4-year liberal arts education, I truly hope parents will instill a desire for curiosity and life-long learning in their children early on because it may be up to each individual to develop skills like critical and creative thinking and to learn about the world we inhabit.

    2 years ago

  • 5gardenias

    kathi roussel from 5gardenias says:

    Fabulous questions you pose here. This new trend in small business and free lance growth is more than heartening. It shows that people will persevere despite adversity and continue to find ways to thrive creatively in a world which seems to want to turn most of us into automatons and low wage earning 9-5 slaves. Acquiring knowledge and skills out of love, passion and curiosity, is clearly the way that we humans tend to work to our fullest potential. The best and most innovative ideas are formulated from this basis. The world could truly be a better place if this trend continues, and more and more people turn away from the corporate models that have had a choke hold on society. College certainly has it's pluses--but this particular form of education is big business. institutions are not always about the student,-- often requiring prolonged study, with endless hoops for students to jump through to earn enough credits in order to graduate-- squeezing every last penny from already overtaxed students and parents trying to pay for tuition. With no job guarantees after graduating. I know barely anyone who has actually been able to find a job in the field they majored in... and if they do, they quickly become disillusioned by them. I agree with so many above who have stated that fostering a love of learning and a creative approach to the way we take on any subject from an early age is so important. It can have lasting and positive effects on a person's entire life. Thanks for this wonderful post!!

    2 years ago

  • SewSimplyFresh

    Kim Opoku-Ansah from StitchLightly says:

    I really love this article. These are thing's I've grappled with lately now that I have a two year old son. Looking back at my life, I went through the traditional path, attaining a bachelors and masters degree. THe thought never even crossed my mind that I could have done anything else. And now what am I doing? I'm a stay-home mom who creates things for family and friends and to sell. Now with my son, I wonder what is best. I like your view of nurturing his natural curiosities and supporting him in whichever route he chooses to take. The options seem endless.

    2 years ago

  • susanaredding9

    Susan Anne Redding from susanaredding9 says:

    I have my Masters' in Education and I wrote an article on this very topic. I agree entirely that curiosity is essential for a child to learn anything that is relevent to them, the rest is PSSA prep. My idea, though is to combine both avenues of education and curiosity to an actual occupation beginning at a young age. Internships and apprenticeships and mentoring should begin when children are very young, and this should be part of the school curriculum reflecting various fields and the interests of the child. If not to lead a child to a happy, fulfilling life where they can actually support themselves, what is education for?

    2 years ago

  • CarolJoyFashions

    Carol Joy from FauxFurFrenzy says:

    What a interesting article--until recently, I automatically assumed I couldn't get along in life with a 9 to 5 job. I've been rethinking my belief system, and I feel hopeful at last. With a little planning, I think I can be creative AND earn a living! Thanks! Carol Joy

    2 years ago

  • Zalavintage

    Zane Saracene from Zalavintage says:

    In the 80s, my boyfriend told me I'll give you $1000 if you can go one hour without asking a question. As I left his study, I was already planning which stores to hit at the Galleria Mall on Sunrise Blvd...but then that nagging question popped into my head and I had to go back and ask why... from reading the comments, it seems so many of us still want to know why.. Great post! Even better conversation!

    2 years ago

  • PiacereMioPaperie

    PiacereMioPaperie from PiacereMioPaperie says:

    My 5 year old wants to be a chef. He has been passionate about it since he was two. We now have cooking school at our house. He bakes pretty well! Both my husband and I have several university degrees and enjoyed receiving them, but know that it is not the only way, and maybe not the best way to truly follow your dreams. Some of the best learning is free surrounded by the people you love most.

    2 years ago

  • franhaywood1

    Fran from FrancyThat says:

    I have to say that my off-spring are grown up and have or are choosing their own paths now - however I love this article and believe that a world full of happy people experiencing and exercising with what makes them happy will lead, eventually, to a more peaceful planet. Those who care will find this path alone - those who don't care (yet) may need to be shown. ;~) Fran

    2 years ago

  • pinkpoppies1991
  • coley616

    Nicole DeChristopher says:

    This is great! Just saw Michael Karnjanaprakorn, Skillshare's CEO/co-founder present at Big Omaha.

    1 year ago

  • YASENuk

    YASEN from YASENuk says:

    Learning is not a one stop thing, its ongoing, ever changing. Striving to gain more knowledge, WONDER about this and that, be curious and 'always seeking more knowledge' will ultimately give you WISDOM. I am 25 and my one only goal in life is to gain more knowledge for the fun of knowing it! It makes you richer, it turns into an invaluable key for life. Curiosity is definitely the way forward. Peace and love!

    1 year ago