Childcare & Education Professions

An expedition’s education system is a large part of what molds its raw children into capable adults. Your education policy, expedition administration, and culture define how this process plays out and what sort of adults you’re left to lead.

Learning_From_Assignment_Highlighted

A student, developing all sorts of skills as a result of education.

Summary

  • In Outer Colony, different child care activities are used to manage infants and older children.
  • Caring for babies requires giving them frequent attention, since can’t do anything for themselves.
  • Caring for older children is more focused on training them, teaching them useful skills and enhancing their attributes.
    • Children are taught by educators via lessons.
    • Adults prepare lessons for each child and assign these lessons to them.
  • Lesson content is tailored to the child by way of your expedition’s education policy.
    • Education policy defines which sorts of things are taught to which groups of children.
    • Children are stratified by intellectual capacity, which has the greatest effect on job suitability out of all a person’s traits.
    • Education policy lets you prepare your expedition’s children appropriately for their future roles in the labor force.
    • Education policy defines the emphasis on skills that children develop.
    • Education policy also defines the split between physical and intellectual training.
  • The specific educator teaching children plays an important role in what and how well they learn.
    • Educators can more effectively teach skills they actually have. An accomplished mechanical engineer will be able to teach engineering skills more effectively than someone who’s never done the job before, assuming a comparable teaching skill and personality.
    • In cultures with nuclear families, parents tend to work much harder teaching their own children, given their greater investment in the outcome of the education. The related bonuses from parents’ increased effort and goal prioritization of educational tasks will often yield the best results.
  • Children can only consume so many lessons per day. They’ll spend the rest of their time on other activities that can still be educational.
    • Providing certain kinds of toys can improve a child’s attributes. Playing with a chemistry set, for instance, will stimulate the child’s intellect.
    • Socialization is also very important to the development of a child.

Baby Care

Cry_Until_Fed_Highlighted

For the most part, caring for your expedition’s infants is a straightforward endeavor. Covered more in the life cycle stages article, babies can’t do much of anything for themselves. All they can do is cry when they have a need that isn’t met, and it’s up to an older member of your expedition to attend to the crying baby and care for it.

When a baby is first born, it will cry until taken someplace agreeable. For nuclear families with adequate living conditions, this will usually mean taking the baby to one of the family’s rooms. In communal cultures or when a family doesn’t have adequate housing. the baby will be taken to open bedding in a child care area. A child care area is a type of area designation where children and babies congregate to receive care and education.

All types of baby care activities are tied to a single care giving skill, the baby care skill. Particularly skilled or invested caregivers can improve a baby’s smarts in the long term by paying them extra attention. As such, the baby stage can be a subtly important time of a person’s overall development.

Lesson Preparation, Assignment, Learning & Education

Learning_From_Assignment_Highlighted

When a baby grows into a child, its educational opportunities expand significantly. The primary mode of learning in OC is through learning assignments, created by an educator, and given to a child for completion. Several times a day, students can consume learning assignments, and when they do, particular skills and attributes are increased. By teaching children, they enter your labor pool as more skilled, capable adults when they become old enough to effectively work at their designated professions.

How do learning assignments work? Each learning assignment is prepared individually, for a specific child, by a specific educator. Orders are automatically created by your expedition to give assignments to students. Appropriate educators with the necessary activities enabled will assume responsibility for these tasks and prepare a specific lesson for a child in need. When the lesson has been prepared, it’s assigned to the child, who spends some period of time completing it. Once the lesson is completed, the child’s skills and attributes are enhanced accordingly.

Many factors determine how effective the education is. First, the teaching skill plays a significant role here. Lesson preparers with a high teaching skill will produce lessons that yield greater benefits. Additionally, like with baby care, the relationship between the child and educator can play a significant role, depending on the culture. In cultures with nuclear families, parents are more invested in the outcome of their child’s education, and their instruction generally yields good results.

Additionally, a lesson’s effectiveness in teaching a particular skill is influenced by the educator’s knowledge of that skill. If the educator has accrued significant real-world experience in a particular area, they will be more effectively able to teach the skill. This is part of the reason why elderly personnel often make excellent educators.

But what skills and attributes are conveyed via the lessons?

Education Policy

Education_Policy

The education policy interface, for students with roughly normal intellect.

Your expedition’s education policy defines which skills are taught to which types of students. Expedition administration is required to effectively control education policy, but once your administration requirements are satisfied, you have a great deal of control over what’s taught to your people.

The first part of the dialog defines which education tier you’re configuring. Students are stratified into 3 educational tiers: one for students that are more simple minded, one for students that are more intellectual, and one for students that are about average. This allows you to set different policies for the different groups, effectively preparing each student for his future position. It doesn’t make much sense to spend a lot of time training a student who’s 3 standard deviations above average in intellect in how to mine ore, since he probably won’t be doing that as an adult. By the same token, teaching advanced surgery theory to a very simple minded person is also a waste of effort, since they’ll never be well suited to that kind of task.

The first part of the policy specification defines the split between physical and intellectual training. Balancing these levels defines the sorts of attributes that are improved as a result of the lesson. In the screenshot above, most emphasis is placed on intellectual training for students of normal intellect, as this expedition is focused on developing a more technically skilled workforce.

The next part of the interface defines the balance of skill training focus. Higher proportional values indicate a greater focus on training one skill versus another. In the screenshot above, heavy emphasis is placed on skills like machinery maintenance, food preparation, and child care for the normal intellect tier. These are specific deficiencies that the expedition is seeking to address in its existing workforce, and people with normal intellectual capacities are well suited to these kinds of jobs.

Ultimately, the education policy system lets you exercise a fine degree of control over how you prepare your expedition’s youth for adulthood and helps you to shape the character of your expedition as you deem fit!

Toys, Socialization & Other Learning Peripherals

Played_With_Toy_Highlighted

A prime limitation of the lesson preparation system is that children can only consume so many lessons per day. The rest of their time will be spent engaging in other activities. Some of this time is spent addressing their basic survival needs, like eating food, sleeping, and socializing. The rest of a child’s time, though, is spent doing whatever it feels like.

Although it isn’t possible to control this part of a child’s regimen as precisely as learning assignments, you can still exert a further influence here. For example, children universally love toys, and they’ll seek to play with them when given the chance. By controlling the sorts of toys available to a child, both in its home and in child care areas, you can control the sorts of experiences it has during its leisure activities. Different sorts of toy items have all sorts of different effects on a child.

For example, playing about with a chemistry set can yield an experience that increases a child’s intellect. Playing with an art set can increase a child’s creativity. Playing with toy soldiers can change a child’s personal preferences and adjust its affinity for infantrymen and combat pilots. These formative experiences can adjust a child’s personality and tendencies in ways that aren’t possible later in life, so the sorts of items you surround a child with can have an important impact on the adult the child ultimately becomes.

Again, all of these systems contribute in various ways to the development of a child. There are a multitude of influences you can exert. Some can be synergistic, and some can be antagonistic, but I think the end result is an interesting system that makes for a deep, challenging, and fun experience.

Posted in NPCs