The continuous excellent results in the Pisa Report, carried out by the OECD every three years and just made public, of the Finnish educational system, cause the entire educational community, inside and outside our country, to fix their eyes on its modus operandi. For what is this? How do they do that? What can we imitate? It is true that in 2012 he did not get such good results, but they still rank among the best. We explain some essential characteristics that can help explain your success and serve to reflect on our own teaching system.
1. Teacher training
The Nordic country leads the PISA report with free education that puts the most prepared teachers in Primary. The training of teachers is one of the strictest in Finland and includes extensive pedagogical training. Education is a prestigious profession and teachers have great authority in school and in society. The equivalent of Teaching in Finland is a complicated, demanding and long degree, like the doctors in Spain, which also includes personal interviews, so the teachers are very well prepared and vocational professionals.
2. Teacher evaluation
Teachers and teachers are very well valued by society, which trusts them fully. The educational curriculum is common but the centers are organized. Each school and its teachers design and organize the curriculum (although it has some general lines and a common framework for all) and are planned to achieve the established achievements as best considered.
In fact, that teachers invest their time in preparing the class is part of the workday. Teachers do not teach as many hours of class as in other countries, but the time they spend in the classroom is smaller and spend the remaining hours to prepare their lessons, research, organize or work collaboratively with other teachers.
3. Less homework
The school days are shorter and there are hardly any duties: you work in class because the importance of play and rest when the child is small is highly valued. Education is taken seriously but also importance is given to play and rest. Children do not start school until they are 7 years old, when they are considered mature to learn. In addition, the school days are shorter. Primary students have only 3 or 4 classes a day, with 15-minute breaks between each of them, plus lunch breaks. There are hardly any homework, work is done in class, not at home.
4. Involvement of parents
Finnish parents are so aware of the importance of training in their children that they are very involved in their learning and complement the school with cultural activities. In addition, in Finland there are many aids for reconciliation between work and family life. All this makes the relationship between home and school very close. Society and families consider that education is fundamental and complement it with cultural activities, receiving financial aid to facilitate the reconciliation of work and family life, so that they have more time with their children.
6. They encourage creative thinking
Imagination and entrepreneurial skills are highly valued in Finnish society. There are many professionals in the artistic and creative fields, as well as in technology and engineering. This is also encouraged in education, where creativity, experimentation and collaboration are valued over memorization and master classes. In the classrooms of Finland the curiosity and imagination of the students is rewarded, thus fostering creativity and the ability to undertake and experiment.
7. Personalized education
The key to the success of their educational system is “understanding the needs of children”. Thus, in the first years the school failure of children with special difficulties is avoided by turning in them from the beginning. They are based on learning by projects, which aims to develop seven areas of competence of the Multiple Intelligences.