In 2017, we created a month-long experiment — hundreds of students moved to Barcelona with their families to take part. The reason for this experiment: creating a transgenerational university that will help you in your journey of transformation, whether you’re 9 or 90.
The #1 question we asked ourselves when creating the teens programs was:
How do we prepare the next generation for the future?
The answer is not in training them for jobs that will become obsolete in 10 years, but in teaching them the skills they need to succeed later in life.
We’ve designed the programs at Mindvalley U so that while the adults learn from some of the greatest minds, the kids and teens learn on a parallel track specifically designed for their age group. Afterwards, the entire family can come together and bond over their learnings over dinner or a night tour of the city.
The most important aspect: we focus not on training teens for a specific job, but on opening their eyes up to the kind of impact that they want to create in this world — and setting them up with the cognitive toolbox to build it. So they won’t just understand English and Physics — but the very way life works.
What happened last year surprised even us.
Turns out, Mindvalley U teaches the subjects the teen students had been waiting for. The teens didn’t waste one moment applying the knowledge they had learned from the workshops, masterminds, and seminars to the real world.
Teens’ Transformation at Mindvalley U
Jackson Gieson, 17, completely embodies that. Jackson had attended a workshop on abundance and left with even more inspiration to make his dream a reality — his dream of starting a clothing line with his original artwork for the skater community. The one thing holding him back was the idea that he needed to get a job first so that he could invest in his dreams later.
The teens were having dinner with one of the speakers, where they discussed how to start a business, when the speaker gives Jackson a challenge:
Would you start your company if you could launch it in a day, with virtually no up-front costs?
And that Saturday, in under 5 hours, Jackson had launched his dream T-Shirt business and learned how to navigate the challenges of an online business. It didn’t take long before they started to make sells. Now, a year later, they’re still at it.
This year, Miriam Gubovičová, Director of Programming for Mindvalley Events, has created the structure for both the kids and teens program for an even greater transformation.
She has worked with Gahmya Drummond-Bey, Award Winning Instructional Designer and teachers’ mentor to create the curriculum. Below we share the psychology behind the teens’ program and the agenda.
The Psychology Behind the Teens’ Program
One of the best gifts that we can give to the next generation is teaching them how to thrive, especially in an uncertain and rapidly-changing world
That’s why we’re designing the teens’ program based on the psychology of emotional intelligence. By teaching teens how to develop their emotional intelligence, they’re able to create a life of their own through gratitude, envisioning, mindfulness, and leadership.
Especially since teens are experiencing so much stress nowadays. As Miriam says:
There’s a lot of pressure on them to succeed, achieve, and perform, so instead of adding to that, we’re gamifying education. We’re calling it the game of four: the game of vision, the game of wellness, the fame of fulfilment, and the game of self-discovery.
Another reason we’re gamifying learning is that it turns out teens learn differently from adults. Columbia University shows that during the teenage years, gamification particularly helps us remember what we need to learn in order to transition successfully into adulthood.
And, as we know at Mindvalley, one of the greatest aspects of transformation is community. That’s why the teens are not only provided a safe space to experiment and learn, they’re also welcome to join the adults’ seminars.
What Teens Will Be Learning at Mindvalley U
Here’s the full schedule for The Mindvalley U Teens’ Program. Below, you can read more about what to expect week by week.
Week 1: The game of life vision
After the family lands in Tallinn, you can explore the amazing cultural sites of Tallinn, register for Mindvalley U, and meet your tribe. In the teens’ program, the first week is all about life vision, so that they can understand how to create a definition of success that’s their own.
Week 2: The game of wellness
Physical education and anatomy are no longer sufficient to build a holistic well-being. So after designing their own life vision, they’ll learn habits and strategies for wellness.
The workshops will cover gratitude, forgiveness, morning routines, and more. Since social media is such a big aspect of many teens’ lives nowadays, a couple of workshops even tackle self-image and online image.
Week 3: The game of fulfillment
We’re living in extremely prosperous times. And we no longer need jobs solely to provide. More and more people are choosing careers based on what gives them a sense of meaning and purpose.
Today, in particular, teenagers want a career where they feel like they’ll be making an impact, and this week is all about finding out exactly what that entails. They’ll be learning the basics of communication, awareness, and self-understanding.
Week 4: The game of self-discovery
Adolescence is usually a challenging and important time because it’s the time we begin to discover what we like and dislike. And when we know ourselves, we’re less likely to succumb to peer pressure and more likely to be successful, confident, and happy. That’s why Week 5 is all about the game of self-discovery.
Teens will have the opportunity to learn from the Monk who taught the cast of Dr. Strange and go through the premium seminar, Lifebook for Teens, where they’ll be able to design a vision for their life.
These four topics all combined will teach teenagers what it takes to beat the game of extraordinary. This will be one of those things your teenagers will look back on and say: it changed my life.
What do you wish schools would teach teenagers? Share it with us in a comment below!