About love of learning
An article by Dr. Peter Hatherley-Greene (May 16th) in "The National" titled ‘Why Finnish model of education cannot be imported to the UAE’ can be read as a stout defense of the local educational system. These arguments are very familiar for myself and other Finnish teacher trainers working in international contexts.
It is a frequent misunderstanding that international educators import or attempt to copy paste an education model, or worse yet, an entire ‘system’ into another culture. This cannot be done. Also Dr. Hatherley-Greene makes this point. Each culture is unique, and they are, quite rightly, protective of their cultural values, embedded and reflected in the national curriculum. We in Finland would not consider importing a foreign education system or values from England or from any other place. For this reason Finnish education providers or consultants are not at all exporting their model or their system to other countries.
Yet there are Finnish teacher trainers working in many countries and their work is productive and much appreciated. Since we do not export our curriculum, the history of our country nor our cultural values, what is it that we do then?
We bring with us a student centered approaches, active methods and ways to develop students’ transversal skills - and ensure that the students achieve great results. We co-create and adapt the student centered methods in close collaboration with local teachers so they can call them their own and implement them in their classrooms with pride and confidence. We work with education officials, school leaders and teachers who want to create a well functioning system of their own. The ways to organize teaching and learning and the methods we work with represent successful and effective student centered practices implemented in Finland and elsewhere. The common denominator is that they all put the student and the joy of learning at the center.
In short: We export love of learning.