Bear Grylls calls for British schools to teach life skills instead of maths and languages

The Mirror is reporting that Bear Grylls wants schools to teach life skills instead of maths and languages…

The TV survivalist, 40, said the ability to lead a team and deal with danger is sorely missing from the education of mollycoddled kids.

Grylls said he was berated by his eight-year-old son’s teacher for instilling his survival skills into him.

Bear, whose show Mission Survive is currently airing on ITV, said: “Marmaduke’s teacher said to me the other day, ‘It’s all well and good Marmaduke knowing how to abseil out of a helicopter but he’s really got to focus on his mathematics.’

“If I had a school it wouldn’t be maths and Latin and Greek.

“It would be: how to get on with people, how to put teams together, how to manage risk, how to keep fit, how to eat healthy – that sort of stuff. But then I think everyone would think I was mad.”

Bear, 40, who is Chief Scout, thinks kids are too mollycoddled and protected these days…

More at: Bear Grylls calls for British schools to teach life skills instead of maths and languages


It seems to have become very fashionable for celebrities to tell schools they need to teach this or that, but does Bear Grylls make a good point here behind the headline? Please give us your reactions in the comments or via Twitter…


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  1. chrismcd53

    SchoolsImprove does being on the telly give you the right to influence education? #ukedchat #SLTchat being on Twitter can.

  2. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Grylls has a point in that young need life skills (schools try to teach this) but I’d suggest maths etc is also a life skill

  3. Dandan7171

    SchoolsImprove Sounds like a great idea for a ‘free school!’ Having said that the ‘Daily Mirror’ is hardly a bible of accuracy!

  4. BarrettJAM

    SchoolsImprove Maybe the word ‘instead’ is a it much but certainly a dire need of ‘as well as’. Life skills are important part of life!

  5. It is perfectly possible to create a life-skills curriculum which has academic potential.  Examples:  
    teach everyone about healthy eating and stretch the more academic students by teaching osmosis on the back of it.
    teach everyone about insulated houses and energy efficiency and stretch some students with convection, conduction and the technicalities of the Greenhouse Effect.

  6. FionaTipper

    SchoolsImprove these would be good skills but not instead of STEM, could ditch RS and music lessons and use that time. (Marmaduke?)

  7. HughdjNicklin

    lindamcquone SchoolsImprove It is if you have it, but is it not true that 50% of the population doesn’t know what 50% is?

  8. lindamcquone

    HughdjNicklin SchoolsImprove the most popular newspaper has a reading age of 8.5 years, but we don’t claim that reading isn’t a life skill

  9. KarenHudspith

    SchoolsImprove makes a pleasant change from politicians with no current experience of working with yp telling us what to teach

  10. Discoverytrust

    SchoolsImprove BearGrylls it would be interesting to discuss what patents should teach their children. #curriculumforlife

  11. GarethLewis76

    KarenHudspith LaurenCasey_LMC chad_d_smith With BearGrylls on our side the #SoftSkills learning revolution will keep moving #UkEdChat

  12. KarenHudspith

    GarethLewis76 is it wrong that I’m now imagining previous Sec of State for Ed leaping from helicopters with their shirts open to the waist?

Let us know what you think...