We believe it starts with how time is spent. Days turn into weeks, into months, into years, and ultimately our entire lifetimes.
As the American education system has developed, we have overlooked a critical gap that is not being filled by teachers, tutors, or counselors. We have failed to teach kids how to manage time, prioritize, and importantly, how to learn. We have thrust them into the chaos that is high school, expecting them to somehow figure out the how on their own.
We all know that prioritization is important. We all know that a new productivity technique is just one Google search away. Some of us are part of the 1.8M that have taken the #1 Coursera course Learning How to Learn, which has surpassed every academic course on the site in enrollment, perhaps demonstrating the lack of this much-needed fundamental topic’s presence in our existing education system.
But even though knowledge is freely available on the Internet, it is not enough. Much has been written about the Knowing-Doing Gap. After knowing, one must think critically about how to apply the knowledge, in this case productivity and learning strategies and techniques, into their own unique life/work. And after doing that, one must develop sufficient self-accountability to maintain these practices over the long run, while battling proclivities towards procrastination and instant gratification. In our Information Age, getting knowledge is the easy part; converting it into sustainable action on a day-to-day level is the hard part, and it’s an especially difficult and currently unguided task for a young teenager. However, closing this Knowing-Doing Gap is absolutely necessary for peak academic performance.