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Education is the backbone of any country. Some countries take it seriously as the way to impart positive character and skills into their youth, while others could do much better, and then there is the Scandinavian schooling system that has taken experts by surprise over the past decade. They follow a unique approach that is bringing great results to their society.
The Nordic countries were the first to incorporate technology into their schooling. They did not just create a teacher website and let things happen, rather, they slowly included values like communication, teamwork, and creativity into their curriculum with the help of technology.
The best thing about the Nordic way of schooling is that they are student-oriented. Teachers also spend more time creating a learning environment for their students to flourish rather than spending it on protesting for better working conditions – thanks to their strong union system. Countries like Finland have been outperforming the rest of the countries and we can learn a thing or two from them.
Here are some important things we can learn from the Nordic way of schooling:
1. Equal Treatment
The key to the Scandinavian schooling system’s supremacy is attributed to the fact that students from diverse financial and social backgrounds are treated equally at schools. Since their educational system is based on equality and democracy, students learn to respect people from different backgrounds at a very young age. This approach also creates a plethora of opportunities for its students by providing each member of society with equal learning opportunities. There are no high or low-end schools – education is free nationwide.
2. Teacher-focused System
Since teachers are the ones responsible for transferring values to the students, the Nordic education system invests in their professional development. In addition, teachers are valued and respected throughout the community that enables them to take pride in what they do. Teachers have strong unions that are responsible for looking after their rights and other matters concerning teachers.
3. Lack of Testing
The Nordic way of education is free of formal testing practices. Scandinavian countries have almost no tests for their students and they have been the best performers on PISA rankings. This puts less stress on the students and the schools, as they are not ranked against one another. The lack of testing is compensated with project work that I will discuss next.
4. Homework-based Projects
Instead of keeping students busy with tests, the Scandinavian schools assign students with “projects” which are fun to do and come with reasonable deadlines. The teachers assign these projects and they are responsible for promoting rational thinking and improving skills at the same time.
5. Profession-focused Curriculum
The students in this part of the world are allowed to pick a career at an early age. This selection is made based on personality traits and personal preferences. The teachers also help their students in deciding which way to go. Once the decisions are made, each student is allotted a specified curriculum based on their choice of profession. For example, if you are in the police program, you will have to focus on law, psychology, and gym. These students will not have to worry about mathematics and the sciences any longer.
6. Emphasis on Skills
The best thing about Nordic schooling is that the system is focused on imparting students with skills. In the 1980s, schools decided to promote creativity and collaboration among its pupils. In the 21st century, these skills turned out to be must-haves. Similarly, because of the project-based setup, students pick up so many practical skills that contributed towards Scandinavian countries’ impact on gaming, music, digitization, and entrepreneurship worldwide.
Some Major Takeaways
The fact that the entire system is stress-free allows students to become free thinkers and profession-focused. Classes are structured in a way that they appear like giant discussion rooms where everyone is allowed to express their thoughts. Teachers are respected and recognized for their services. Another important thing is the way the students are taught. Students are encouraged to learn through gaming and other cool mobile apps. The learning is problem-based so that they know how to tackle things in real life. We all need to learn a thing or two from the pioneers of modern day education.