Finland trip offers new insights

Finland trip offers new insights

30 August 2018

Three staff from Macquarie Anglican Grammar School recently spent a week in Tampere, Finland for a K-9 educational study tour.

The trip is the result of the school’s inaugural Robert Grant Scholarship which was awarded to Mr Benn Wright and Mrs Natalie Cole in late 2017. Mrs Marina Simcox, Head of Teaching and Learning for Pre Kinder – Year 12 also joined the tour.

The trip was an opportunity to learn about the “relaxed” Finnish education system and modify some of their practices to implement at Macquarie.

Staff were part of a K-9 study tour comprising teachers from Australia, Malta, the UAE and the USA. Each morning the group visited schools and spent each afternoon at Tampere University. They visited a rural school 30 km from Tampere and also observed a number of metropolitan schools from early childhood through to Year 9. 

Highlights and key learnings of the trip included:

  • Finnish K-9 students are not ranked against each other but rather measured against their own individual performance.
  • Medical specialists work in schools with parents, staff and students from 1 year of age onwards.
  • Their culture and their education system are intertwined and must be studied as one collective idea. For example, in Finnish culture there is a strong sense of trust and responsibility and this carries through into the education system.
  • There is a considerable emphasis on languages and life skills. Students must learn at least three languages and lessons are delivered in a multilingual format.
  • Benn taught a Year 7 English lesson as the students were studying Australia.

More information will be shared in the coming weeks.

Category: General