The skills of tomorrow for the learners of today

It’s one thing to advocate for a revamp of how we, as a nation, teach our kids. But it’s important to remember: Not all solutions come from Washington – in fact, the best ones usually come from within our homes and families.

So until we do a nationwide rehaul of our entire education system, try these out for the learners in your lives:

1. Khan Academy

The original free online learning hub, Khan Academy provides a broad STEM education to anyone with an Internet connection – for free. What began as one man’s amateur math tutoring videos has grown into an educational empire.

Khan Academy educates in more than just the basics, however. Your kids can also get primers in topics like personal finance and entrepreneurship.

2. Codecademy

This resource will help your student learn specific programming languages. Many of the introductory courses here are free and extremely user-friendly.

3. Udacity

If any particular skill in Codecademy caught your fancy, it may be worth investing in one of this site’s “nanodegree” programs. Each program prepares a student with the skills necessary for a specific field, whether that be “blockchain developer” or “robotic software engineer.”

For older students, these programs are particularly attractive. Many programs were designed by companies specifically looking for workers who excel at the precise skills in that degree. Half education and half audition, these nanodegrees a preview of where the future of education may take us.

4. edX

The future of work requires more than just an army of computer programmers. America needs a new generation of thoughtful citizens. edX corrals free courses from the top worldwide universities online. Only the credential requires payment. This means you can get a liberal arts education from Harvard for free, provided you put in the work. Learn about music, philosophy, the arts, and more here. The future needs our imagination and creativity, too – not just JavaScript.

Keep in mind – in our rapidly changing economy, we all need to be life-long learners. These resources are available for students of any age, be they 14 or 40.

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