FREEDOM AND SAFETY
Finland just made a major move in its education system by scrapping traditional old school subjects.
For most teenagers, school means taking plenty of core subjects, but not all of them are interesting.
Finland’s government made a big step in education by being the first country in the world to get rid of all school subjects. Instead of rushing children through multiple subjects, major world events will be looked at through interdisciplinary study as a whole.
Marjo Kyllonen, the head of the Department of Education in Helsinki says;
“There are schools that are teaching in the old-fashioned way which was of benefit in the beginning of the 1900s – but the needs are not the same, and we need something fit for the 21st century.”
For example, by taking the course ”Working in a Cafe,” students understand language, communication and basic economics. World War II can be studied through history, literature, geography and math all at once.
Senior students older than 16 will be free to pick up the topic they want to study by collaborating each other. Instead of sitting back in a classroom and counting the minutes left until freedom, they will be able to discuss, try and solve problems themselves.
This also allows them more interaction than if they were left sitting behind a desk, anticipating when they could raise their hand and ask an instructor a question.
According to Pasi Silander, the Helsinki development manager:
“What we need now is a different kind of education to prepare people for working life. Young people use quite advanced computers. In the past the banks had lots of bank clerks totting up figures but now that has totally changed. We therefore have to make the changes in education that are necessary for industry and modern society.”
The new systems seeks to boost confidence, give students more control over their education, and be successful through collaboration and discussion. As well as feeding their confidence, the new system encourages social skills and self-expression.
The new format not only impacts students but teachers as well. Instructors now collaborate with other teachers to plan lessons and discuss a new approach to teaching traditional subjects. Silander said:
“We have really changed the mindset. It is quite difficult to get teachers to start and take the first step… but teachers who have taken to the new approach say they can’t go back.”
The changes are planning to be complete by 2020.