Problem-Solving Skills

Problem-Solving Skills Pus Students on the road to success

It’s impossible to think of a leader—community, business, political—who doesn’t have problem-solving skills. It’s an essential attribute of leadership and as important as any subject. Employers say they need a workforce fully equipped with skills beyond the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic to grow their businesses. When surveyed, employers listed problem-solving skills and an ability to work in a team as the most desired qualities they seek. 

 

The ability to think critically and solve problems is not only necessary in the business world; it’s an essential life skill that builds confidence and helps people become resilient. Research has found that most people make 35,000 decisions each day! Some of those decisions are mundane and made subconsciously (which shirt should you wear today), while others carry more weight (what should I do to increase my future chances of success). 

 

No one is immune to problems. Everyone faces challenges. Some people are better at working through them than others. While some people believe that humans are natural-born problem solvers, others consider it a skill that must be taught. Even if it is innate, problem-solving is a skill that can be learned, practiced, and improved.

 

Given the enormous challenges facing the world—war, poverty, climate change, inequities, and more—it’s more crucial than ever that young people are equipped with problem-solving skills and empowered to activate them.

 

Educating the Next Wave of Leaders to be Problem Solvers

 

Each year in the United States, millions of students are exposed to adversity—violence, crime, abuse, homelessness, poverty, racism—that creates toxic stress. Those experiences affect attention, learning, and behavior. Schools and student programming can buffer stress by teaching social and emotional skills that help children handle adversity.

While all students benefit from learning and practicing problem-solving skills, the advantages may be even more significant for marginalized students—those who are underserved, disregarded, ostracized, or feel sidelined.

 

Children and youth with strong social and emotional skills have demonstrated that they do better in schools, in life, and at work, because they have the skills needed to lead productive lives and contribute to society. They can analyze situations, solve problems, communicate with their peers, and understand others’ emotions. They have empathy and enough self-confidence to step out of their comfort zones. They can thrive and adapt in many different environments, including schools and the workplace.

 

Learners with strong social and emotional skills often perform better academically and are better equipped to deal with stress and trauma. Soft skills can also help youth be successful in a variety of careers. They develop social skills, self-control, and the ability to adapt to changing conditions.

 

Formal programs that teach social-emotional skills, such as Second Step and PATHS, have proven effective in many ways. For example, participating students showed greater improvement in their social and emotional skills, attitudes about themselves, others, and school; in classroom behavior; and test scores and school grades—benefits that endured years later.

 

Leadership development programs, such as the year-round, multicultural youth leadership programs offered by REAP, play a critical role in arming emerging leaders with problem-solving skills to drive promising futures for our communities, our nation, and the world.

 

Solutions is a 10-month leadership curriculum open to students from all backgrounds and cultures, providing a series of interactive leadership modules focused on civics, education, health, business, and entrepreneurship. 

 

 

Renaissance is a gender/culturally specific program for males between 12 and 18 years of age that provides increased and focused interventions exclusive to their unique challenges.

 

Everyone can play a crucial role in developing and nurturing the next generation of leaders. Please get involved and help us provide students with the support and encouragement they need to positively impact the world.

thank you for supporting our young leaders!