One of the key 21st century skills that we need to nurture is innovative thinking. We need to get students at our tertiary institutions to innovate and not just use the technologies that are available to them. Obviously they need to use the technologies, but they need to use it to improve it and use it to build upon the technologies that are available.

We all have cell phones, but Steve Jobs decided that the phone needs to have a better user interface and it needs to do more. He designed the iPhone and today it has changed the way we interact with our phones. Not just on the iPhone but also on other mobile devices. Many other phone manufacturers have adopted some of the features on the iPhone.

All over the web we find that entrepreneurs have used available technology to satisfy a need that they see in society. One famous example is our very own Mark Shuttleworth, he used available products to design and develop software that fulfilled a need in the market. Later he sold his application for millions of Rands.

He thought innovatively. Ten years ago the top ten jobs in the world today, did not exist. Do you think that the top ten jobs in 2020 already exist or are these jobs made possible with technologies that have not yet been invented?

Will one of today’s learners or students from Bloemfontein change the world in a few years time by thinking innovatively?
Let’s insure that our learners and students are innovative in their thinking and that they will not just use but improve and expand the knowledge available to them.