Just like the Finnish Education system itself, the program was an experiential, phenomenonbased, and cross-curricular undertaking.
providing a continuum of services,” says Judith
and beyond. Many of the participants are already
Dauman, Director Strategic Support and Innova-
working on ways to incorporate more opportunities
tion at Aurora Public Schools in Colorado.
and spaces for students to move, play, and socialize
As the Finnish education system is rooted in the values and culture of the Finnish society, the pro-
throughout the school day as afforded by the Finnish school day schedule.
gram shed some light onto these cultural and societal
“Our summer school program will pilot a
elements that contribute to its education system. The
learning-through-play Kindergarten class with
U.S. school leaders experienced nature school at the
a strong outdoor classroom component inspired
Nuuksio National Park in Espoo, tried the napakelkka
by the connection the Finns have to the outdoors.
carousel sled on the frozen sea, relaxed in the sauna
Conversations will continue at all levels about the
and even swam in the Baltic Sea. Heureka Science
role of homework as it relates not only to academic
Center was featured in the program as an example of
achievement, but to the work-life balance for all
new and diverse learning environments that play an
students. These initiatives move our programming
important role in the Finnish curriculum.
towards a healthier and happier learning experience and honor the whole child instead of the cur-
The Impact Continues to Grow
rent compliance-based wellness programming,”
While the program was brief, impact will continue
says Mary Anne Butler, Assistant Superintendent
to grow as the participants share the takeaways
at Stonington Public Schools.
with wider audiences in their school, home state
Joy of Creating Finland has been a longstanding leader in education. As a Fulbright Finland Inter-Country Travel Grant recipient, I gained a better understanding why. Loralie Heagy 2018–2019 Fulbright Finland Inter-Country Travel Grant Music teacher, non-profit director and teacher trainer Juneau, Alaska. Loralie came to Finland from the University of Strathclyde, UK where she is a Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching grantee. (Loralie top right in the photo.) Fulbright Finland Inter-Country Travel Grant www.fulbright.fi/ inter-country
hat makes the Fulbright Finland
teachers and pupils to take a creative approach
Inter-Country Travel Grant unique
to music and create their own compositions. The
is that school teachers are also eligi-
Finnish expression “ihan oma juttu” refers to the joy
ble to apply, not just scholars. Terhi Mölsä, Chief
that children can experience when creating their
Executive Officer of Fulbright Finland Founda-
own music. I was honored to attend the training as
tion, shared the reasoning behind their decision:
a member of the Musical Futures’ team and present
they value having teacher voice, viewpoint and
the Musical Futures approach to music-making in
expertise at the table when discussing solutions to
the school classroom.
today’s global challenges. This reason speaks to the
Thank you Fulbright Finland Foundation and
cross-disciplinary, holistic and innovative spirit of
the INTO Team for making my trip to Helsinki such
the Finnish education community.
a memorable and educational one. The time spent
During my five days in Helsinki, I had the oppor-
at the Fulbright Finland Foundation office talking
tunity to attend “Future Songwriting” training by
about educational issues is testimony to how sup-
INTO SCHOOL. The Creative Europe program of the
portive, involved and interested the entire Fulbright
European Commission selected Future Songwriting
Finland team is in forming lasting international
in July 2018 as the only major collaborative project
relationships with its grant recipients. I look forward
under Finnish management. Future Songwriting is
to connecting with the Fulbright Finland Alumni in
based on the INTO SCHOOL concept, developed in
Alaska now that I’m officially an alum!
Finland called Ihan Oma Juttu (my own thing). The main goal of the project is to make composing an integral part of music education, inspire
14 | www.fulbright.fi
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