Finland is a relatively small nation in Europe with a staggering record of education success. This success has baffled educators and parents all over the world. I feel there is so much to learn from them. I hope to travel to Finland one day and just seat in a classroom to learn (practically) what their teachers do so well. I have read that teachers in Finland have a “Whatever it takes” attitude when it comes to teaching. Statistics quote that there are about 62,000 educators in 3,500 schools from Lapland to Turku. These teachers are professionals selected from the top 10 percent of the nation’s graduates and required to earn a *master’s degree in education.* Many Finland schools are small enough, so teachers know every student. If one method fails, teachers consult with colleagues to try something else.
What struck me is highlighted in the last paragraph. The level of education required to qualify as a teacher! You can only give what you have. I am not saying everyone should go and get a masters degree, but I want us to see the discipline of study and research that a masters programme gives. These teachers in Finland as researchers! They study, they look at theories of learning, they come up with new ideas of teaching etc. No wonder they have a “whatever it takes” attitude.
This is an attitude that we can copy. Don’t get to hung up on teaching children in a particular way. What if it is not working? Remember, children are born eager and ready to learn. So there is no child that cannot learn!
Of course, this attitude is underpinned by a solid foundation of knowledge and continuous development. When was the last time you went to a training course that you *paid for by yourself?* With so many low cost and free training programmes out there, there should be no excuse. As an inspirational teacher, you cannot give knowledge that you do not have. What is knowledge? Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of something. The summer break is coming to an end, what new familiarity have you acquired? What new awareness or understanding are you going to use when you get back into class?
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