Friday, December 13, 2013

Exponential Times

The world is changing rapidly!  This of course is an understatement.  We are living in exponential times.  Here are some interesting factoids. 
  • ½ of what youth learn in the first two years of college is outdated by the time they are a junior.
  • Facebook ingests over 500 terrabytes of data every day which includes uploading 300 million photos and 2.7 Billion likes.
  • Technical information is doubling every 2 years
  • In India, over 1,576 languages are spoken—this is compared to the between 6,800 and 6,900 languages in the world.
  • India has more honors kids that America has kids.
  • The top in demand jobs in 2010 did not exist in 2004 
  • There are more text messages sent every day than there are people on the planet.
  • A week’s worth of information in the New York Times is more than a person in the 18th century would have experienced in a lifetime.  .
  • Over 100 billion Google searches occur every month.
  • 97.8% of people in Iceland use the internet.  78.3% of Americans do the same, while only 38.4% of the people in China and 0% of the people in North Korea. 
  • “We are currently preparing youth for jobs that don’t yet exist; using technologies that haven’t been invented yet; in order to solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet. 
  • The weight of all the information on the internet is .2 millionths of an ounce—that’s equivalent of the smallest possible grain of sand.

So what does this all mean for us in the afterschool program?  To me it means that we need to redouble our efforts to infuse our work with helping youth master the Five C’s—communication, creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and citizenship (global as well as local).  By focusing on how to think, communicate and interact we will prepare youth for the exponential circumstances that we find ourselves in.  Let’s also focus on helping youth develop a sense of belonging because in this fast-paced world, this could be the tether that grounds them. 

Check out the Consult 4 Kids video, A Sense of Belonging by click on this link.    This is one of over 400 instructional videos available to frontline afterschool staff through the C4K website.

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