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Updated by Ashley Youngblood on Jun 06, 2016
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21st Century - 8th grade learners

Here are the 8 needed skills for the future:

  • Leadership
  • Digital Literacy
  • Communication
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Global Citizenship
  • Problem Solving
  • Team-Working

You will find a lesson plan below for each of the 8 21st century skills.


This activity is designed to allow students to communicate and express their opinions on various topics in a respectful and non-threatening way and to respectfully listen to and connect with other students in a socially productive way. Standard advisories are mixed up so students and teachers are outside their social boundaries this day. For instance, 2 advisories, with 2 different teachers who normally occupy one classroom, would split in half for this lesson. An advisory, perhaps across the hall would also split, so two different advisories would be together for this lesson.

Digital Literacy

Students learn that to conduct effective and efficient online searches,
they must use a variety of searching strategies rather than relying on a
single source. They learn a five-step method for planning and carrying
out an online search. Students then apply what they have learned to
a scenario in which they pretend they are employees in a workplace,
searching for information for their job.


This activity is excellent for developing students' communication skills; it demonstrates the importance of listening and asking the right questions (inquiry skills).

Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence is a wide range of skills that children of all ages can
develop and improve. These skills are critical for emotional well-being and life
This section of the Youth Deployment Activity Guide is designed to give you
additional age appropriate resources that are helpful in teaching your child
about emotions. The emotional and social skills that are presented were
written in order to help you grow your child.


This lesson will help students learn about entrepreneurs in today's society and how they got started in the world of business and became successful at it. This lesson reinforces textbook chapters on the history of entrepreneurship and what it takes to become an entrepreneur.

Global Citizenship

Students play international detective as they read accounts of international pollution issues. Students also complete an activity tracing ocean currents and discussing the paths of pollution. These activities prepare students to identify the mindset of a global citizen and to define global citizenship. This lesson reinforces concepts from “Citizen Me” and can be followed by “Students Engage!” but can also be taught independently. Note: This lesson contains an optional PowerPoint presentation (see Lesson Prep). 

Problem Solving

Students will demonstrate an understanding of the Technological Problem Solving
method, and will be able to apply the method to a real life problem.


1. Students learn about working together as a team by doing a creative activity together.
2. Supervisors learn about promoting teamwork and strategies for conflict resolution.