Developing a competency-based curriculum involves building a number of individual competencies in different areas of life: learning, citizenship, relating to people, managing new situations, and managing information. 

In order to call ourselves global citizens, we must become competent in the ways of our world. To do that, we have to monitor what's happening. 

Global awareness should be the world's core competency. Anything less is an antediluvian viewpoint, which, in my opinion, endangers our world and everyone in it. 

I believe that by monitoring global news and drilling down deeper into the subjects that interest us, we can raise an equally, if not more coherent, generation of global citizens with an expanded worldview. 

It is in this vein, that I began developing a global, competency-based curriculum for my children. 

Each day, we explore science and religion, history and politics, business and entertainment. We map out the news and superimpose it onto a world map.  Naturally, patterns emerge. Not only do these patterns provide us with insight into how history has repeated itself, but it also simultaneously allows us to more accurately anticipate global trends based on present trajectories.

Over time, their competencies in each of these areas grow. These are the following competences I have notated in their progress since embarking upon our journey four years ago:

  • They have become autodidactic learners and seek out new learning opportunities in areas of knowledge that interest them. 
  • They know their preferred learning styles and understand how to adapt to the teaching styles of others. 
  • They have learned how to systematically think. 
  • They have explored many of their own creative talents, and know how to best make use of them. 
  • They enjoy and love learning for its own sake and as part of understanding themselves. 
  • They have achieved high standards in literacy, numeracy, and spatial understanding. 
  • They have achieved high standards of competence in handling information and communications technology and understand the underlying processes.
  • They have developed an understanding of ethics and values. 
  • Their personal behavior is shaped by their core beliefs. 
  • They contribute knowledge to the world society in ways that are meaningful to them. 
  • They understand how society, government and business work, and the importance of active citizenship. 
  • They understand cultural and community diversity, in both national and global contexts. 
  • They understand why all beings should be respected and valued. 
  • They understand the social implications of technology. 
  • They have developed an understanding of how to manage certain aspects of their own lives, including managing their financial affairs. 
Relating to People
  • They understand how to relate to other people in varying contexts in which they might find themselves. 
  • They know how to get things done. 
  • They know how to operate as a team, and their own capacities for functioning in different team roles depending upon what a given situation calls for. 
  • They understand how to help develop other people, so that others may successfully contribute to the process of goal achievement. 
  • They have developed a range of techniques for communicating by different means, this includes communicating in different languages, though the use of hand signals, facial expressions, and intuitive sensing. They understand how and when to employ each one. 
  • They have developed competence in managing personal and emotional relationships. 
  • They understand, and are able to use, varying coping strategies for managing stress and conflict. 
Managing Situations
  • They understand the importance of managing their own time, and have developed personal techniques for doing so (study skills, soothing music to improve concentration, physical exercise, healthy eating and sleeping habits). 
  • They understand what is mean by managing change, and have developed a range of skills and techniques for adapting in new environments. 
  • They understand the importance of both celebrating success and managing disappointment, and understand how to handle both. 
  • They understand what being entrepreneurial means. 
  • They take the initiative and ask for help as they need it. 
  • They understand how to manage risk and uncertainty in an expanding range of contexts (based off of what they have thus encountered), and have learned techniques for managing them that can be applied to new situations. 
Managing Information
  • They have developed a range of techniques for assessing, evaluating and differentiating information and have learned to analyze, synthesize and apply it. 
  • They understand the importance of reflecting and applying critical judgment, and are learning to do so with increased competency. 

It is my aim to continue building upon these core competencies, which will eventually lead to a higher retention of general knowledge in addition to mastery of their preferred subjects. Mastery is the same goal that our present educational institutions promise, but fail to offer.