Sharon O’Rourke, Skills Development Scotland
Helping young people make connections between what they are learning in classrooms and the world of work they’ll enter when they leave school has been brought into sharp focus by Building the Curriculum 4, the Career Education Standard and of course, Developing the Young Workforce.
Embedding career information and advice web service My World of Work into lessons, using SDS’s newly developed ‘lesson inserts’, is our way of helping you to make that connection for young people without needing to be a career expert yourself.
What are lesson inserts?
Lesson inserts are our answer to the common pupil question ‘why are we doing this?’
Co-created with teachers, for teachers, these are short, easy-to-use and adaptable activities, linking curriculum topics to careers by using the wealth of information on My World of Work.
The lesson inserts use the ‘plan on a page’ format. All essential information is in one place, brief and to the point, so you don’t need a lot of preparation time to use them; just pick it up and it’s ready to go. They are also flexible enough for teachers to expand or shorten the activities to meet the needs of their lesson.
How it works in practice
The short activities set out a range of ways to help young people make career connections.
These could be links to a job profile or film lasting only a few minutes featuring a person working in a certain career. For example during a biology lesson on dissection, a link to the job profile for a pathologist has a handy video showing the job in action.
Alternatively, individual or group exercises can encourage deeper careers research by perhaps asking pupils to complete a quiz or worksheet which requires searching My World of Work for the answers.
Or perhaps the activity might be given as homework to pupils to research jobs on My World of Work that are related to your subject with an action to discuss any common skills across them all in your next lesson.
At Whitburn Academy, Computing Science teachers are using the lesson inserts to show pupils and their parents how vital the subject is across a variety of careers. They are designing activities that mix careers research with practical programming activities to show the link to modern day jobs, such as Web or Games design, as well as the part programming plays in more traditional trades, such as electrician. This encourages young people to understand the breadth of opportunity their subject offers. The teachers used the subject choice tool to research careers information for their lesson inserts, which they said increased their confidence to promote the subject in school and at parents’ evenings.
Keeping it current
As you know, My World of Work is part of the range of support on offer from Skills Development Scotland.
The information it holds is regularly updated, ensuring pupils are always accessing the most up-to-date information possible.
Using links to My World of Work helps young people develop career management skills and widens their career horizons as they become more informed about the career choices available to them.
Using My World of Work also provides the opportunity for teachers to build their career intelligence, whilst increasing their knowledge of what’s available on the site from the perspective, not just of a teacher, but as an individual, and perhaps as a parent as well.
We are still early in the process of creating lesson inserts, and are keen to work with teachers across all subjects to create more.
Examples of the lesson inserts that have recently been developed with teachers can be found in the partner area of My World of Work.
If you’re not registered or haven’t used the range of resources we have for teachers on My World of Work, why not sign up as a partner today and get involved?
The partner development and integration (PD&I) team at SDS are here to support you every step of the way. We really believe that these lesson inserts can be a useful, inspiring tool to support learning in your classroom.
We all want to see young people go on to successful and fulfilling careers when they leave school.
These lesson inserts are another way for us all to support them to do just that.
If you’d like to get involved email firstname.lastname@example.org