Happy Education NO.1

One day I read Shanghai morning post that it took the interview on the child when they applied to the kindergarten in Shanghai. They have multiple tests such as distinguish color, count number, walk bridge and so on.

During the visit to Finland, I am very curious about kindergarten as a new mum. The Master and the teacher sincerely gave us the nice introduction.

First, it doesn’t carry on any interview to select children from kindergarten. On the contrary, children and parents choose the kindergarten by preferences.

Second, it fully respects child as individual. At home, sometimes we could see such a scene that the child is crying loudly when he is dragged into kindergarten by the parent. In Finland, there is a program called ’soft landing’, that is, in the first six weeks, parents can accompany the child in the kindergarten together, watching them eat, sleep and play. On one hand, it lets the child feel safe, slowly get familiar with new environment. On the other hand, it also allows the adult further check the nursery is really appropriate to the child. In addition, children can bring the mother’s photo, his favorite toy, and so on. It makes him feel at home. Everyone has the typical growth plan.

Last but not least, all the teachers in the kindergarten hold the master degree. One teacher is only responsible for the average of seven children. The little baby will get more care that is counted more than one child. Before the child enters into the kindergarten, the teacher visits the child’s home, talks with parents and get familiar with the habit of the child. It is no formal classroom training, but a lot of ‘play education’ instead. For example, the teacher lets the children know the leaves, grass and insects when they play in the forests. It is flexible to educate among different environments.
We had a nice conversation at that morning. The children were playing sands, swing and toys outside the house. We can see their smiles, listen to their laughs and feel their happiness. I believe that the happiness is most important for childhood.

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March 13th 2010

Today, me and my husband went to an art museum in Helsinki.  The exhibition showed the development in industrial design.  Finland has the title of Design Capital 2012!  Finnish design is famous for being simple and classic.

Helsinki is an amazing city and our trip ends here.  I think we will come back sooner or later.

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March 12th 2010

Today we went to Tallinn, Estonia.  Tallinn is a city located in the south of The Baltic Sea.  It was astonishing to hear that this little town has 800 years of history.  I liked the old-fashion architechtural style.

We left Tallinn at 9 P.M. and arrived in Helsinki around 11 o’clock.  I felt sad realizing that it was my last whole day in Helsinki.

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March 11th 2010

We didn’t have anything special planned for today so we took a walk in Sibelius Park.  The lake was frozen and covered by all the white snow.  We went to a red cottage for hot coffee and enjoyed the gorgeous view of winter in Helsinki.

There were some nice wooden houses in Töölönranta and we took many pictures there.  After that we went to The Finnish National Museum where there was an exhibition about the development in the history of Finnish people.  In the afternoon, me and my husband went to a pizzeria. My husband told me he was proud of me for going out on my own, even though I don’t speak good english.  I think the reason I feel comfortable doing it is because I feel safe in this community.

We went to an ice hockey game in the evening.  It was the first time I had ever seen so many Finnish people gathered together and we could see that ice hockey was a very popular sport in Finland.

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March 10th 2010

Today we visited Laurea University of Applied Sciences.  I was very glad to meet a Chinese student who was studying there.  She told me students in Finland have the oppourtunity to arrange their studies based on their interests and future career plans.

After we left Laurea we visited Helsingin Suomalainen Yhteiskoulu which is one of the best schools in Helsinki.  After talking with the vice principal Jukka Niiranen, I got the feeling that it is a way to success if you get into the school.

In the evening we were invited to a church.  Sitting in the peaceful church, enjoying “music from heaven”, it could be one of the most wonderful things in life.

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March 9th 2010

Today we visited Meilahti Primary and Secondary School.  It is the only elementary school in Helsinki that offers courses in Chinese.  The teacher told me students are put in different classes based on an entrance exam, which I thought was smart.  I was also amazed to see that the school offers sewing class, cooking class and all kinds of real-life based classes.

Bilingual instruction in Finnish and Chinese started at Meilahti primary school in the autumn of 2008.  The bilingual Finnish-Chinese instruction will follow the Finnish comprehensive school curriculum.  The objective is functional bilingualism which is supported by providing teaching of both the Finnish language and Mandarin Chinese.  Various subjects will also be taught in both Finnish (by Finnish teachers) and in Chinese (by Chinese teachers).

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March 8th 2010

Me and my husband got up very early this morning since he wanted to read his documents and I didn’t want to waste a single minute in this amazing city.  It was unbelievably quiet, peaceful and pleasant in the morning, walking along the path, breathing the fresh air and enjoying the scenery.

Henrika and Ms Yang took me to the student union of Metropolia University of Applied Sciences.  After the introduction and discussion, I was surprised on how much effort Finland has put into its education system.  A freshman tutoring program will be provided to every student for free, even to all of the international ones!  Finland is a country that enjoys such a high level of education.

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March 7th 2010

Me and my husband went sightseeing today.  Our first stop was Suomenlinna.  You can’t imagine how gorgeous it was, sunshine with pure white snow.  We also went to Temple Church later that day.  Both of us loved our tour and we took so many photos that both of our cameras went off batteries.

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March 6th 2010

At Helsinki-Vantaa Airport we were welcomed by a very pretty and nice Finnish girl called Henrika Ignatius.  I was not nervous about my poor English skills after seeing her super sweet smile.

Henrika led us to The GLO Hotel and helped us with the check-in.  Me and my husband walked around the center after a short rest at the hotel, which is located in the heart of Helsinki.

I like the style of traditional European architecture in Helsinki, and because of its simplicity I feel that its pleasant.  My husband told me Helsinki is a city in the forest, and with all the nature around it doesn’t need any artificial decorations.  It is very different from Shenzhen where I haven’t seen a many trees in the center.  To make up for the trees we have gardening design in the city center.

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March 5th 2010

Me and my husband and set off from Hong Kong International Airport today.  We were the only passengers on the shuttle from Shenzhen City to Hong Kong.  We landed to Munich Airport and then transferred to Helsinki.  We arrived in Helsinki after two hours delay due to the heavy snow in Munich.

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Education is highly valued in Finland. The high standard of education forms one of the cornerstones of the Finnish national strategy. From primary schools to universities, the Finnish education system is one of the best in the world.

Finland has been ranked the highest performing country in three consecutive OECD PISA surveys (Programme for International Student Assessment). PISA assesses the learning results of 15-year old students in science, mathematics, native language and problem solving. Finland’s most recent score (2006) was the best result ever achieved in any subject area in any PISA survey. Finland has a high level of expertise in higher education and research in number of fields, including teacher training, ICT, biotechnology, nanotechnology, genetic technology, brain research, and the forest sciences. In addition, the work-oriented universities of applied sciences produce specialists in the fi elds of engineering, business, nursing, dental care and physiotherapy. The collaboration between higher education institutions, research institutes and companies is well-established and very effi cient.

The Helsinki metropolitan region combines pure nature and a safe environment with state-of-the-art technology and modern study and research facilities, including a number of well-equipped libraries and modern ICT facilities and laboratories. Efficient social and healthcare services and effective support in questions concerning studying, living and working make the Helsinki region a great place for international students. The Helsinki metropolitan region houses several top-class higher education institutions which offer over 100 Bachelor and Master degree programmes taught in English. About 35 percent of all higher education studies in Finland take place within the region, and it is home to around half of the international students studying in Finland.

The universities in the Helsinki metropolitan region are ranked amongst the best in the world and are highly renowned for their topquality research and education. Most of the basic research in Finland is undertaken by universities, and nearly one fourth of all Finnish research and development is also carriedout by universities. Professors are responsible for both teaching and carrying out research, which, along with an extensive range of advanced degree programmes, attracts many international postgraduate students to the Helsinki region to work and study. The proportion of international students enrolled in highly theoretical advanced research programmes is particularly high in Finland (20 percent of all international students).

The universities of applied sciences have strong links with the surrounding community, which promotes efficient and productive cooperation and helps students establish a bond with working life. Hundreds of members of the business community belong to the universities of applied sciences’ partnership networks. All degree programmes include internships, which helps to promote future employment.

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Wenyin ZHU Judy Expo Family from Shanghai Last entry: Jul 7. 2010 7:26
Marta Palacios Marta Palacios Principal, Bruce-Monroe elementary school Last entry: Feb 5. 2010 13:54