Lessons from Finland

There is a strong movement in ELT that tries to move away from a fixation on “building blocks” which need to be taught at every lesson. This movement places a stronger focus on the emerging language that learners naturally produce – that should be a teacher´s main criteria when choosing what to teach.

Interestingly, in Finland, which has one of the world´s highest educational standards, the goverment has recently decided to ban “subjects” as we know them. Instead, they are centering the school curriculum on topics, arguing that in this way the “subjects” will be taught in a more natural way.

I can´t help thinking both these movements are the result of the same school of thought, which is centred around a simple idea: the objective of education is learning, not teaching.

Here´s a recent article from The Independent which explains the details of the Finland School Project – I hope you will find this interesting to read:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/finland-schools-subjects-are-out-and-topics-are-in-as-country-reforms-its-education-system-10123911.html

(published by Steve Barlow)

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