Get Your Students to Think About the Future

Student Talk: 3 Questions to Start the Conversation About the Future

As an educator, it is your duty to prepare your students for the future. A significant percentage of how they turn out as adults is a direct result of their experience inside the classroom shares Patrick Dwyer of Merrill Lynch; and as such, as their teacher and mentor, it is your responsibility to make sure you equip them with the tools that will help them navigate the future.

One of the things you can do to help your students prepare for their future is getting them to talk about it. To put it another way, getting your students to think about the future starts with asking the right questions.

1. Where would you be five years from now?

This may be one of the oldest clichés in the world, but in the right setting, it could reveal one’s deepest desires and highest aspirations. So in a classroom setting, with all eyes focused on you, ask your students where they see themselves five years down the road. Some might have a concrete idea: small business owner, buying their first house, and so on; while others may not be so certain yet, and not knowing where they would be in five years is actually a good way to start a conversation about the future. Take your cue from there and start the conversation.

2. What scares you about the future?

This is one of the best questions to ask your students to get them to think about the future. Starting off with what scares them or what they fear the most about the future is a great way to start a discussion on how to deal with a situation in which they have to face their fears. In other words, this question starts a conversation on finding a solution to their fears about the future.

3. If you were given a chance to choose any job in the world, what would it be?

This question helps students identify the career path/s they could take. To ask students about what job or career they would be happy at if money was out of the picture. Most of the time, when students think about the future, they think of a dog-eat-dog world where everyone is so focused on getting ahead that it doesn’t matter who they trample on their way to the top.

But if the students are given a picture of a future that’s fulfilling, happy, and peaceful, and where the money is not an issue, they could be more open to talking about their dreams and aspirations.


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