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Stories and articles on educational issues and about ICT, distance learning
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Schools in Finland will no longer teach 'subjects' | EDUcation CHANGE | Teaching by Topic

Schools in Finland will no longer teach 'subjects' | EDUcation CHANGE | Teaching by Topic | On education | Scoop.it

For years, Finland has been the by-word for a successful education system, perched at the top of international league tables for literacy and numeracy.

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Pasi Silander, the city’s development manager, explained: “What we need now is a different kind of education to prepare people for working life.

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“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.

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“We therefore have to make the changes in education that are necessary for industry and modern society.”

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Subject-specific lessons – an hour of history in the morning, an hour of geography in the afternoon – are already being phased out for 16-year-olds in the city’s upper schools. They are being replaced by what the Finns call “phenomenon” teaching – or teaching by topic. For instance, a teenager studying a vocational course might take “cafeteria services” lessons, which would include elements of maths, languages (to help serve foreign customers), writing skills and communication skills.

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More academic pupils would be taught cross-subject topics such as the European Union - which would merge elements of economics, history (of the countries involved), languages and geography.

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Via Gust MEES
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jmoreillon's curator insight, March 27, 2015 9:42 AM

This is what school librarians have been doing forever!

María Florencia Perrone's curator insight, April 8, 2015 4:00 PM

The world around us is not labelled or divided in categories, then why is academic content? Can we not relate topics and elaborate meaning on the basis of relationships and intertwined data? 

Helen Teague's curator insight, April 13, 2015 9:11 PM

I wonder if this would work in the U.S.? Also, in Finland, students do not take standardized tests until the end of high school (Zhao, 2012, p. 111), so thankfully, perhaps the drill and kill process is diminished.


*Zhao, Y. (2012). World Class Learners. 

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European Ministerial Level Conference on Opening up Education in Oslo, Norway on 9-11 December 2012

European Ministerial Level Conference on Opening up Education in Oslo, Norway on 9-11 December 2012 | On education | Scoop.it

"The Norwegian Ministry for Education and Research is together with the Cyprus EU-Presidency organising the Ministerial Conference "Opening up education through technologies: Towards a more systemic use for a smart, social and sustainable growth in Europe" to be held in Oslo, Norway on 9-11 December 2012."

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[EU] Commission presents new Rethinking Education strategy

[EU] Commission presents new Rethinking Education strategy | On education | Scoop.it

"Digital learning and recent trends in Open Educational Resources (OER) are enabling fundamental changes in the education world, expanding the educational offer beyond its traditional formats and borders. New ways of learning, characterised by personalisation, engagement, use of digital media, collaboration, bottom-up practices and where the learner or teacher is a creator of learning content are emerging, facilitated by the exponential growth in OER available via the internet. Europe should exploit the potential of OER much more than is currently the case. This requires good computer skills, but some Member States are still lagging behind as seen in the Education and Training Monitor 2012, with 9 Member States with over 50% of 16-74 year olds with no or low computer skills. While the use of ICT in education and training has been high on the policy agenda, critical elements are not in place to enable digital learning and OER to be mainstreamed across all education and training sectors. A coherent strategy at EU level could address the scope, size and complexity of the challenges in support of actions of the Member States and the entire chain of stakeholders."

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