Why do we need to learn new skills?
Times have changed. Our world has changed. Our jobs have changed. Just as jobs have evolved over the last 200 years, so have the skills needed to thrive in a rapidly changing, complex world.
Second Industrial Revolution
Digital Information Revolution
Computer support specialist
Digital marketing specialist
Home health aide
Information security analyst
Director of emotional intelligence
Chief modernization officer
Smart home architect
Director of cultural forecasting
Ethical sourcing officer
Genomic portfolio director
Space exploration guide
Drone traffic optimizer
- 1970s–early 2000s
(Click on each era to learn more)
What’s in your child’s backpack?
Researchers agree that young people are going to need a wide range of skills to succeed in today’s rapidly changing world – beyond just reading, writing, and arithmetic. And if we want our kids to succeed, we need to start thinking about a new set of basics.
Click on each of the icons below for a little more info about these important skills.
The New Basics
What can YOU do to help develop these New Basics?
Evidence proves that these skills are concrete—and they can be taught and learned. You, as a parent, can play a vital role in equipping your child with the new basics.
Start the Conversation
Talking with your children about their daily activities will help them to become more aware of the skills they’re learning at home and at school, For example, is your child making changes to a project based on teacher feed-back? That’s critical thinking at work!
Let your child’s teacher know that you’ve heard about The New Basics and are curious to know how your child is doing with these skills. You will find this opens up new conversations with the teacher—and you’ll probably even learn new things about your child in the process!
A child entering school this year will graduate in 2031. They all deserve an education that provides them the skills and competencies they need to thrive and ensures Canada remains a strong competitive country.
Sheldon Levy, Former President, Ryerson University
The world is changing so fast and I worry whether my kids will be prepared for whatever comes their way. I expect schools to teach math, reading, and other subjects but I know it takes more than that to be successful, healthy, and happy.
Parent, Toronto District School Board
The New Basics, as a set of competencies, provide an overarching purpose to the teaching and learning in my classroom. The Ontario Curriculum is then in service of these broad, interdisciplinary goals.
Kimberly Stolys, Teacher, York Region District School Board