Learn. Lead. Innovate.

Learn. Lead. Innovate

tiistai 31. joulukuuta 2013

What does it mean to be a Certificated Institute in Finland?

Muurame Senior High School has been several years highly qualified institute. This means lot of development work day by day. Our school has gained three times the certificate for promoting sustainable development. Our school was the very first senior high school to achieve this status. Today there are only 5 senior high school in Finland who has reached this certificate.Certificate stands for quality.
Criteria for sustainable development certificate :

1.       PLANNING

Values – sustainable development is one of the main values in our school and everybody is aware of these values. Briefing staff, students and parents about these values

Legal requirements – school/staff knows the rules and legal regulations of sustainable development

Organization and resources – school has an environmental team and enough resources (skills, people, money, time etc.). School management supports these activities

Sustainable development program – school has a development plan with goals, timetables, staff and activities/actions. Students and teachers are involved in planning


Themes and implementation – annual themes in learning/coaching and in school’s general policy

Networking – active role and tendency to find new networks

Education and coaching – good knowledge on ecological, cultural, social and economical environments. Thinking skills like critical thinking, understanding of causality, evaluation and visions. New learning environments like nature, experiences, social, mobile, technological and cultural environments. Possibilities to engage and to be active. New learning methods and pedagogy in coaching.


Systematic evaluation – school evaluates itself every year. Neutral monitoring outside of the school every third year.

Development plan and report – A 3-year plan. Reporting to all partners.

Next time we have this supervising in March 2014. So wish us luck for this big challenge…
Happy New and Sustainable Year 2014 !



keskiviikko 16. lokakuuta 2013

Sofa school 24/7 ?

When I was teaching history in my class I suddenly got an idea of classless school - Sofa school. Everywhere you sit down there is a school. Simple.

Basics :

1. Open 24/7
2. No school buildings and limited staff
3. Only moderator or facilitator
4. #sofaschool chat every day 2-3 hour
5. Materials in clouds (Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud)
6. Learning via discussions and dialogue
7. Informal and unformal learning
8. Global classroom and intercultural students
9. Languages English, Chinese, Spanish
10. Voluntary and crowdsourcing
11. No curriculum : "what do you want to learn" ?
12. Social aspect : student get passion to see their classmates and there will be meeting and encounters
13. "Everyone is a teacher and everyone is a student"

Could this work ?

tiistai 15. lokakuuta 2013

Student leadership made by VideoscribeHD

VideoscribeHD is an excellent tool to make small presentations. You can use your own pictures or Videoscribe's library. You can add different elements like music, paper, text or record your own voice. Handy and easy to use. Here is mine "student's voice" in words. Picture was taken from our school's sustainable certificate and video was linked to Youtube.

tiistai 8. lokakuuta 2013

Finnish best practices and feedback in Indian press

It was great to have some feedback about Indian Educational Leader Delegation in September 2013. Here some articles in local press in Chennai area. Thank you a lot for this important and encouraging feedback.

maanantai 30. syyskuuta 2013

Indian Education Leader Delegation in Finland

Indian delegation in Muurame Upper Secondary School
13 Indian education leaders visited Jyväskylä area Central Finland. Delegation was facilitated by EZ Vidya corporation. Mr Bhanu Potta from Nokia ja Mr Ganesh Subramanian from EZ Viday coordinated and moderated Indian delegation. Delegation has one goal : to get know better world known Finnish education system in general from kindergarten (K-12) to university. Here was our schedule :
Day 1
Lecture : Finnish school system – key expert Mr. Petri Lounaskorpi
Visit No 1 : Haukkamäki kindergarten – Ms Päivi Kaihlajärvi ,Ms Merja Hautakangas
  • Kindergarten and pre school
  • Offers diversified and high quality day care in a secure environment for children aged 1-6 years
  • Works in close cooperation with the Keski-Palokka primary school (school visit No 2) nearby
         Implementing the mobile tools in preschool education
Visit No 2 : Keski-Palokka primary school – Principal Mr Esa Jaakkola
·         The school (K-6) has about 500 pupils and 42 teachers. Keski-Palokka is an elementary school in Jyväskylä offering a science programme, which means more lessons in mathematics and a hands-on approach to physics, chemistry, geography and biology.
·         excellent English teaching and teaching for students with multi-cultural backgrounds
·         The new educational and pedagogical method in primary school
·         The practical classrooms of the 21 centery
·         Green flag school
Day 2
Visit No 3 : Faculty of Education / Department of Teacher Education – Mr Matti Kuorelahti
·         The Department of Teacher Education has its roots in the first Finnish-language teacher training college, Jyväskylä Teacher Seminary founded in 1863. In 1934, this teacher training college became the College of Education, in turn becoming the University of Jyväskylä in 1966.
·         The Faculty of Education eventually became the fifth independent faculty of the University of Jyväskylä in 1973. In 1979 teacher education became university-level education with the qualification of a Master's degree in Education.
Visit No 4 : Institute of Educational Leadership – Mr. Mika Risku and  Ms. Päivi Kananen
·         The Institute of Educational Leadership has been at the forefront of developing research and university-based training in educational administration and leadership in Finland since 1999.
·         For Finnish customers the Institute offers the Principal Preparation Programme, which provides eligibility for a principalship, and for senior principals we provide an Advanced Leadership Programme.
·         For superintendents and principals the Institute organizes leadership training programmes.
Day 3
Visit No 5 : Palokka comprehensive school (grades 1-9) – Principal Tuija Hakkarainen (Ms)
·         Excellent English teaching and teaching for students with multi-cultural backgrounds
·         New winds of Finnish school building, centre of the surrounding society
·         Globe school since 1996
·         The curriculum of ICT and mobile learning
Lecture : ICT and mobile education in Finland - Mr Timo Ilomäki (coordinator)
Lecture: The role of inspection in Finnish school system – Mr Juho Helminen  special advisor of the Finnish National Bureau of Education
Day 4
Visit No 6 : Muurame Upper Secondary School – Principal Mr Aki Puustinen
·         New learning methods
·         Mobile administration of the school
·         Entrepreneur education in Finnish schools
·         Social media and social media networks in learning
·         Sustainability system and Certificate for promoting environmental education
Visit No 7 : Cygnaeus Upper Secondary School – Principal Mr Ari Pokka
Lecture : The role of School Principals in the future - Ari Pokka, (Mr) President of the World Association of Principals

Mr Bhanu Potta and our international coordinator Mrs Heli Vuorela
We both learnt a lot of our cultures and education sectors. In India the whole scale is enormous comparing Finnish ones. One of our guests had more than 9800 schools under his control. And one unit consist nearly 14 000 students. Everything is smaller in Finland. Still teacher’s work is similar. Hopefully we see each other another time in Finland or in India.
Thanks Indian people for my first elephant. I want to see real one some day.

perjantai 6. syyskuuta 2013

EU Training and education 2020 – Central Finland principals in Brussels

Central Finland High School Principals in Brussels
22 Central Finland principals and educators visited EU Parliament and Commission in Brussels . Visit was linked to and funded by Central Finland High School project. One of our goal was to see more “European education perspectives”. How European cooperation and exchanges for schools really works ? How does the EU support member states’ education and training ?

European Commission and four strategic objectives
1.       Making lifelong learning and mobility a reality
·         lifelong learning strategies
·         flexible learning pathways
·         mobility
2.       Improving the quality and efficiency of education and training
·         key competences for all
·         attractive and efficient education on all levels
3.       Promoting equity, social cohesion and active citizenship
·         skills and competences for employability
·         further learning
·         active citizenship
·         intercultural dialogue
4.       Enhancing creativity and innovation, including entrepreneurship, at all levels of education and training
·         partnership between stakeholders
·         links education-research-innovation
Erasmus +
Erasmus + program supports schools and educators mobility. This new Erasmus + has three dimensions:
Key action 1 – mobility of individuals
Key action 2 – cooperation for innovation and good practices
Key action 3 – support to policy reforms
MEP Petri Sarvamaa and me in European Parliament

torstai 22. elokuuta 2013

The Finnish Matriculation Examination goes electric 2016

The Finnish matriculation examination is the only national test Finns have. This test will be done every Senior High schools (=Upper Secondary schools) twice a year/season. More than 35 000 students will join. After three years and this test students normally graduated in spring.  Students have been at school almost 12 years without national testing. We think that is marvelous thing. Less testing – more equality.

Matriculation examination has been very traditional and old fashioned. Since 1850 it has done with paper and pencil. Something should be done. Finnish National Board of Education has set a new goal – year 2016 matriculation examination will go electric. First we start in German, geography and philosophy and year 2019 all exams will be electrical.  It is huge challenge to schools and administration. We have to solve several matters before that :

·         how we found infrastructure (Wi-Fi, electric, wires) at schools ?

·         are there enough e-books and e-exams before that ?

·         possibility to use Clouds (Dropbox, GoogleDrive, SkyDrive) ?

·         what sort of computers are valid (tablets, laptops, PC) ?

·         internal or external nets in exam ?

·         how we train our teachers and principals to this change ?


This is also a huge possibility to step in the front line also in exams. We are looking forward to start our first e-exam experiments this autumn.


torstai 4. heinäkuuta 2013

Importance of summer vacation for educators

What is the meaning of holiday for teachers and principals ?

Most of the cases is huge. Educators work is so hard nowadays that you need lot of rest to recover. Working with people every day is even harder than work in factory or in office because you reflect and mirror yourself all the time.

On holiday is time to focus the most important persons - your family and lovings. During school season is almost impossible to see your relatives, grandparents and old friends.Take time to see them properly. Espesially the older people have the wisdom. Discuss with them before is too late.

Summer holiday is also marvellous chance to meet new places, people and get new experiences. If you want to recharge your batteries and refill your think tanks the only way is to see new environments. Be aware and you get plenty of new ideas surroundings you.

Enjoy the nature. What really inspires human being is nature and going outdoors. Nature and forest calms you down. Inhale fresh air and enjoy the sun. Do different things than normally do.

Now it is time to read a lot. New books, articles, see movies and listen to music or go the concerts.

And eventually forget the school and daily routines. This is an order. Have a nice and refreshing summer holiday !


torstai 13. kesäkuuta 2013

ISER 2013 Symposium and New Learning Environments

This my presentation in ISER 2013 Symposium in University of Jyväskylä. Topics of the presentation were New Learning Environments and iPads in learning. Enjoy the story of Mobiluck project.

tiistai 11. kesäkuuta 2013

Forrest Gump ? No, Forest Camp

Environmental education

Every 3rd year our school goes camping. We do co-operation with local army base, church and fire department to set a camp. Forest Camp is one part of our sustainability certificate system for promoting environmental studies.Whole school spend over night in tents and students train security skills like :

-first aid
-fire extinguish with fire department
-find and rescue lost people from forest

Student leadership

Every single tent has student leader who takes care about his/her staff and tent. Student leaders organize food delivery, picking wood for fireplace, set the fire and sleeping in the sleeping bags. Also teachers are under their control. This is really experienced education and good leadership coaching.
Sleep well !


keskiviikko 5. kesäkuuta 2013

Guest post by entrepreneurship network coordinator Heli Vuorela

How to inspire entrepreneurship and active citizenship in high schools?

Heli Vuorela's picture

Education of entrepreneurship takes different forms in different upper secondary schools in Finland. It is one of the six cross-curricular themes in the Finnish core curriculum for upper secondary schools. Each school practices this theme in its own way.

As stated in the Finnish National Core Curriculum for upper secondary schools, 2003: "The objective of the cross-curricular ’active citizenship and entrepreneurship’ theme is to educate students to become contributing, responsible and critical citizens. This means participation in and influence on different areas of society from political, economic and social activities to cultural life. The levels of participation are local, national, European and global.”

In 2009 a network of 23 upper secondary schools from all parts of Finland started a project to develop and promote education of entrepreneurship. The network was called entrepreneurship network (In Finnish Yrittäjyyslukioverkosto) and the project was funded by the Finnish National Board of Education. During the following four years these high schools have shared and spread their best practices of education of entrepreneurship.

The key points of education of entrepreneurship according to these 23 schools in the network are ‘intrapreneurship’, responsibility, activity and initiative. Not only is education of entrepreneurship one subject among the others, but it also means an enterprising attitude in studying and in teaching. An enterprising person – student or teacher – is willing to try new things, maybe make mistakes, but eventually learn a lot.

For a teacher an enterprising attitude means a whole new pedagogical approach. Students are given more responsibility and the teacher’s role becomes more coach-like. Old traditions of teaching are given less emphasis, and the teacher is willing to test new methods, collaborative working playing a big part in classrooms.

Team work is crucial in education of entrepreneurship. Students work in small groups with a project. They usually come up with their own project ideas, thus their motivation is better than in projects given by somebody outsider (like teacher).  In team work students have a possibility to learn about their strengths and weaknesses, and they can develop skills that they will need later on in working life, or their studies after upper secondary school.

In project learning students have to find knowledge and supply it in their project. They can’t wait for the teacher to ‘teach’ them, instead, they learn by doing. An essential part of education of entrepreneurship is co-operation with enterprises and working life. Students may work for companies with a project, or they may get a ‘godfather’ or ‘godmother’ of an experienced entrepreneur to guide and coach them in their project. Also teachers participate in on-the-work learning outside the school. These working days give teachers a broader view on today’s working life than a few-hour visits do.
In the later phase of the 4-year-long network project the social media became an important tool for all parts of the network. Students were encouraged to use social media in learning, teachers found the social media as one channel to reach their students and colleagues. Also the schools as organizations started to use social media in marketing and leading the school, and in informing students in everyday life. Facebook is now a major channel of communication within the network itself. Many of teachers use Twitter to connect with their colleagues abroad, and to follow discussions about education of entrepreneurship and education overall.

The project came to an end in May 2013. The practices and pedagogical methods we have learned will remain and continue to develop in coming years. Students who were part of the process will with certainty profit from their experiences in teams and projects in which they have participated.
In the final seminar in April 2013 the network gathered in Jyväskylä to sum up the achievements of the project. At that occasion we were warmly welcomed to ECF to learn about ECF’s steps toward international business of education. We learned a lot, and we want to welcome all the teachers from all over the world to visit our upper secondary schools  with enterprising students and teachers!

lauantai 13. huhtikuuta 2013

How to make easy eBook from your blog ?

Make your own eBook from your blog easily with Bloxp. Just a put a link to http://www.bloxp.com/ and publish it in iBooks or share it in Dropbox.

Here is mine : https://www.dropbox.com/s/wyoeuml0x47cny4/leadership-think-tank-1365860463.epub

lauantai 6. huhtikuuta 2013

Finland EDU System Google Hangout Chat

We (Olli Määttä, Timo Ilomäki and me) had marvellous chance to join Finland EDU System Google Hangout Chat with colleagues from University of Pennsylvania. Group of doctoral students visited Finland and three local schools surroundings Helsinki. Coordinator Joe Mazza @joe_mazza invited us to join this panel with #PennFinn13 Team to discuss Finnish educational sector.

In this chat participated from U.S. some of the best tweeters and educators like Vicky Davis @coolcatteacher and Josh Stumpenhorst @stumpteacher. We have learnt them a lot. Thank you all for this possibility to meet great american educators. Hopefully we meet someday in States !
See video link below.

Finland EDU System Google Hangout Chat



keskiviikko 20. maaliskuuta 2013

"Is Finnish way the only way"?

What unique we have in Finland ?

                                        Pasi Sahlberg's slide in BETT 2013 London
                                        Photo Aki Puustinen

There is something in Finnish society and our system that rocks. There are several points that makes Finland very nice place to live and work. Here are some points :

-ideal size : not too crowded and lot of space around you

-enough natural raw materials like forests, mines and “ know-how”

-fresh air, clean nature and water

-education system that works (=PISA-land)

-low corruption rate

-high life expectancy

-modern infrastructure (roads, traffic, buildings, communication)

-developed administration and ruling policy

-firm social security system

-people value work and well-being

keskiviikko 23. tammikuuta 2013

School's Security Day. "Flipped" car and other workshops

Our teacher teams planned marvellous Security Day for the school. There was different workshops to improve our security and safe. First there was a lecture about internet security by local policeman. Then we heard touching story about person who was indured and paralyzed in motorcykel accident. After these lectures we had different workshops in various areas :

1. "Flipped car" accident and traffic police
2. First aid by local Red Cross
3. Han Man Doo sport and self defence
4. Sexual security for youngsters
5. Army and military service
6. Traffic security

"Training and discussion about these matters with students are the best security plan for school"

Pictures from "Flipped car" section

tiistai 22. tammikuuta 2013

Pelillistäminen (gamification) ja peliteoria lukion johtamisessa

Lukion johtamistapaan voi hivuttaa pelimekaniikan ja pelillisyyden elementtejä. Vaikka kyseessä ei olekaan varsinainen pelaaminen,voi lukion toimintakulttuurissa hyödyntää samoja innostamisen, ilon, yhteisöllisyyden ja opiskelijoiden osallistamisen muotoja.

Olemme käyttäneet tavoitteellisuutta henkilöstön kanssa laatiessamme yhdessä strategiaa. Yhteisen vision ja arvojen myötä työstä on tullut tavoitteellisempaa. Tavoitteita mitataan kahvihuoneen seinällä olevilla mittareilla, jotka ovat kaikkien näkyvillä. Se saattaa myös lisätä kilvoittelua, kun kaikki näkevät toistensa tekemät vierailut ja työelämäkontaktit, pedagogiset kokeilut,opiskelijoiden tekemät aloitteet sekä hanketyön.

Opettajien viikkopalaveri on nimetty ”Onnistumisten palaveriksi”, jonka tavoitteena luoda positiivisia onnistumisia ja hyödyntää positiivisuuden psykologiaa. Asiat jotka käydään läpi palaverissa, tulevat myös onnistumaan jos uskomme ja luotamme siihen itse.Jos jokin asia menee pieleen, pyrimme oppimaan virheistä ja ”mokat” ovat myös eräänlainen yhteisön käytevoima. Pyrimme suhtautumaan virheisiin huumorilla ja sallien.

Opiskelijoiden eli ”asiakkaiden”suuntaan pelillisyys ilmenee mm. seuraavalla tavalla. Jaksojen vaihtuessa on aina koko lukion yhteinen jaksotapaaminen nimeltä ”Välikohtaus”. Kohtaamisen järjestelyvastuu on kiertävä ja siihen osallistuvat ykköset, kakkoset, abit,tutorit, opettajat ja oppilaskunta. Sisältö on sinänsä vapaa, mutta ohjelmaa tulee olla 15 min ajan ja sen tulee olla rentouttavaa, hauskaa ja yhteisöllistä – ei tiedottavaa.Lopuksi rehtori palkitsee jakson hyvän teon. Palkittava voi olla opiskelija,opiskelijajoukko tai opettaja. Oletamme tämän lisäävän hyviä tekoja yhteisössämme.

Lukioon kuulumisen tunnetta lisää opiskelijoiden runsas osallistaminen lukion toimintaan (tiimit, opettajainkokoukset, vanhempainkerho,lukion vuosittaiset tapahtumat). Viimeksi opiskelijat saivat nimetä lukionluokat uudelleen. Informaation ja neuvojen kysyminen lukion Facebookin kautta lisää opiskelijoiden omistajuutta ja joukkoistaa ongelmanratkaisua. Viimeksi kysyimme ohjeita, vinkkejä ja neuvoja tiimi- ja projektiluokan kalustukseen.



keskiviikko 9. tammikuuta 2013

Steady and handy camera stand for iPad

Videoproduction with iPad can be quite unsteady, because it is hard to stabilize device.We found an old video camera foot and bought one iPad holder to build a great and cheap camera stand. Plastic iPad holder  combined with one screw in the bottom of the system.  Let’s start stable digitalstorytelling…

Here is video from our school's Christmas Party made by iMovie.