For more than a decade many educators have become aware that our educational systems are preparing kids for our past and not for survival in their future. Fact-based or data-driven education based on competition is over. Education as measured by standardized tests and measurement form the basis of our past educational systems. That type of education has little value today or in the future.

Learning boxed stuff and regurgitating it back on tests that are really teaching devices is the basis of our past educational systems. Formulas or data or partial information may have been necessary in the past, but it is now of little or no value. Information of all types is immediately available and is many times more accurate than anything taught by humans, books, or computer programs. Our students have infinite resources at their fingertips. This library of information far exceeds the capacity and capabilities of human brains. To survive in their future, children need to know how to access, understand, and apply information; how to live in a world that isn’t based on mastering data or partial learning about how things work.

Educational systems must still teach young children the basics of reading writing and arithmetic so that they can access the information they need and use it, as philosopher John Dewey pointed out more than a century ago, to make a contribution to themselves and to society.

Because it is impossible to compete with AI, we are seeing the end of competition, one against another, which we once believed motivated humans to get higher scores on tests or to be successful. Physical competition in sports may work, but that kind of competition does not enhance education. It is obvious that the qualities of human beings which result in collaboration and focus on more profound and much more meaningful challenges will ensure that humankind can work with alien intelligence.

Experiential learning enhanced by collaborative processes and non-restrained thinking redefines human intelligence that is not boxed-in by our past approaches. In essence, our students must be taught to think outside of the boxed subjects (disciplines) which are held rigidly in place by walls of tests, measurements, and archaic philosophies. Those who thought and processed information that exists outside of the box were penalized or … they became the leaders of entirely new industries like Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Google, or space-age technologies.

We must accept that these expanded ways of thinking increase the capacity of the human mind in an evolutionary process that lets us use artificial intelligence as a tool to help perpetuate our species.