This is a two-stages course that will be developed in Helsinki and Tallin, although has two clearly differentiated topics. Helsinki´s stage focuses on benchmarking a variety of digital resources. Tallin’s is expected to be more theoretical and focused on research.
Helsinki’s stage has started with the visit to “The English school”, a bilingual and private (surprisingly!) high school located in Vantaa office building. This is a very interesting data, because Petry (one of the five headmasters the school has) gave us a speech about the future of education in which they assume that schools will be not isolated from the rest of its communities but integrated in other social places, like business complex or malls. He also show us the guidelines of the Finnish educational system. Some of the most remarkable points could be the next:
- First of all, teacher´s training. He focused specially on the praxis after their theoretical studies (pedagogy mostly and after that they get specialized on a subject) that happens at real schools. This training program use to took about ten years and it’s at the same time a selection process: only the best becomes officially teachers. This is a two-stages course that will be developed in Helsinki and Tallin, although has two clearly differentiated topics. Helsinki´s stage focuses on benchmarking a variety of digital resources. Tallin´s is expected to be more theoretical and focused on research.
- On the other hand, an important claim: “nobody can be left behind” so that is means that Finnish system focuses on push every student to their best level, even those that have special necessities. They collaborate strongly with families to cover each one learning issues. He also underlined the importance of “learning to learn” key competence such a part of their curriculum as well of assessment.
- Besides they have subjects, but they focuses on the contents in a multidisciplinary approach to them (such as in Spain use to be said, teaching by ambits). Schools has freedom to decide how to do this approach and for other administrative task in order to fit the curriculum to their reality.
In the second part of the morning we started with the TeachingGaming crew that will accompany us these days in Helsinki. In the beginning they started with a very interesting speech about the schools in the future (only e-learning) and the reason why firstly games works in the classroom: It´s a kind of demonstration, a way to things happen in the classroom, but the best way to develop the 21 th century skills (4Cs: critical thinking, creative thinking, communicating and collaborating). Also they offered us some advices about how to build our game curriculum.
Finally we participate in a workshop that mostly consisted in comparing different games from the TeachingGaming platform.
Of course, while having lunch, dinner and a walk in Helsinki we shared a lot of experiences with our Greek, Czech and Croatian colleagues (talking about how each one approaches to its respective curriculum in their countries). But before that we shared a excursion to Suomenlinna island and had a walk over there.