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Faculty of Educational Sciences

 

Recent Submissions

  • Linnala, Julia (2023)
    The idea behind curriculum development work is to continuously inquire about what is happening in the surrounding society and professional reality. Additionally, it is crucial to constantly reflect on perceptions of knowledge, learning, and the learning individual. The ideologies embedded in the 2014 curriculum inevitably reveal something about the present moment and the era on which the value system of the comprehensive school relies. The purpose of curriculum research is to examine the ideological categorization of the curriculum, which non-neutral guides the future direction of education. In this study, I utilize Schiro's (2013) ideological categorization of the curriculum, using it as a framework to examine discourses emerging from the speech of primary school teachers regarding how these different ideologies appear as part of teaching and school everyday life. The data for my research consists of interviews with seven primary school teachers working in the Helsinki metropolitan area. The teachers work in grades 1 to 6. The interviews were conducted as semi-structured thematic interviews. Qualitative data-driven discourse analysis was conducted by thematically categorizing the curriculum ideological discourses emerging from the speech of primary school teachers. The discourses identified in the data included both concurrent and overlapping curriculum ideologies. In teachers' perceptions of the values underlying education, social-reconstructive ideology, individual growth-focused ideology, and the idea of social efficiency were particularly evident. In their perceptions of the content of education, the ideology based on disciplinary divisions and the ideology emphasizing individual growth emerged significantly. In their perceptions of learning environments, all four ideologies categorized by Schiro (2013) were concurrently present. In their views on students as members of society, social-reconstructive ideology and the ideology emphasizing individual growth were particularly evident.
  • Strömberg, Matilda (2023)
    Aims This study aims to explore teachers in Aland Islands,' perspectives on the relationship between students' physical activity and mental health, aiming to understand teachers' efforts to promote both aspects and raise awareness of their significance. In today's society, students tend to be increasingly sedentary, coinciding with a rise in mental health issues among them. Particularly in Aland Island,, alarming statistics have emerged in the past year, indicating higher rates of mental health challenges compared to the rest of Finland. Therefore, it is crucial to understand how teachers in Åland perceive this relationship and what measures they take to promote both physical activity and mental health among their students.To gain insights into this connection, the following research questions were formulated: What importance do teachers in Åland attribute to physical activity for students' mental health? What importance do teachers in Åland attribute to students' mental health for their physical activity? How do teachers work to increase students' physical activity and promote their mental health? How do teachers describe the relationship between students' physical activity and mental health? Methods This dissertation employed a qualitative research method with a narrative analysis. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with three active teachers in Åland for data collection. The collected material then generated three unique narratives serving as responses to the central research questions in the dissertation. Results Teachers emphasized the positive effects of physical activity on students' mental health, citing increased energy, joy, improved social interaction, concentration, and stress management. At the same time, the teachers said that students' mental health can influence their conditions, endurance, and motivation to engage in physical activity.Students facing mental health challenges might struggle to find motivation and energy to engage in physical activity. To promote both physical activity and mental health, schools in Åland participated in various events and break-time activities. Ultimately, the study participants were convinced that there was a connection between students' physical activity and their mental health, even though the extent of this connection could vary. This thesis raised awareness of the link between physical activity and mental health, providing insights into how teachers in Åland worked to support students' well-being. It also emphasized the need for additional resources and support, especially in the field of school psychology, to effectively address these challenges and promote students' health and well-being.
  • Raitanen, Marina (2023)
    Referat – Abstract Goall.: The goal of this survey is to review and see to Aland students' passion of reading and get a picture of what the reading habits look like among these third graders on Aland. The study will shed light on the state of interest in reading and reading habits for pupils in third grade in Aland primary schools. The study will address reading at home and at school, what influences students to read or not read in their free time and address whether there are gender differences in the result. The impact of support and encouragement at school and at home on the passion of reading will also be addressed. Methods: The dissertation's method is a survey, the study is qualitative. A total of 56 pupils participated in the survey. The results were analyzed using a thematic analysis with an inductive approach. Resultas and conclusion: What do the desire to read and reading habits look like in third grade , in Aland primary schools? A majority of the students have a good desire to read and reading habits. Aland pupils in third grade have a generally good to moderately good desire to read and reading habits. How do differences between girls' and boys' reading show up? According to the answers, you can see that girls like reading a little more, like reading aloud to a greater extent than boys, and to a greater extent they have an adult at home who reads to them. Girls also prefer regular books over audiobooks. Boys have a smaller proportion of adults reading to them. However, most of the pupils enjoy reading. The majority of boys appreciate reading aloud, but to a lesser extent than girls, and many more boys than girls choose audiobooks over regular books. Neither group considers themselves to have difficulty with reading. Do the students think that the environment encourages reading? The girls are more likely to say that they feel that the environment (the school and an adult at home) supports and encourages reading. Boys consider to a significantly lesser extent that school and home encourage and support reading. Among the boys, there are also many who do not believe that any adult at home encourages reading. The environment, if you look at it from the perspective of screen time, shows that most students in year three do not think that screen time destroys reading.
  • Oreto, Giulia (2023)
    Objective. The aim of this study was to carry out a survey on the guardians’ views on nurturing in primary schools. The focus was on three dimensions: guardians' views on nurturing in general, nurturing in primary school and co-operation, and the need for cooperation in primary school nurturing. The secondary aim was to investigate whether there were statistically significant differences between the guardians’ background variables, regarding their views on nurturing within these three dimensions, and whether correlations/relations could be identified. Research on nurturing in our primary schools was considered important because the curriculum for basic education in Finland describes the school as an nurturing arena, which is visible especially in the lower grades of primary school where nurturing is constantly present in both teaching and interaction, and emphasises individual national goals for nurturing. However, studies conducted in Sweden showed that teachers do not always agree, or are unsure, on how to approach the nurturing task.In Finland, guardians perceive the general co-operation between the school and home to relate specifically to the child's learning and success, but not to the child's overall well-being. The child's closest adults, in this case carers and teachers, play a major role in the child's learning, development and growth. Cooperation between home and school, including in nurturing, therefore plays a significant role in children's well-being and makes the theme important. The views of parents and carers were considered extremely important in order to get an overall picture of the situation regarding the theme. The studies and theories of Joyce L. Epstein on partnership serve as a theoretical frame of reference for this study. Methods. The research approach was mainly quantitative, with an electronic questionnaire as the primary data collection tool. The response options regarding education consisted of 5-point Likert scales. Most of the questions/statements also included an optional open comment field, which enabled the collection of qualitative data. Therefore, the study could also be seen as a mixed methods study. The voluntary comments were analysed phenomenographically to visualize the variety of views on nurturing in primary schools. A total of 144 respondents, carers, answered the questionnaire. Results and conclusions. According to the quantitative data, guardians' views on the nurturing role of schools were on average relatively positive. Guardians were somewhat satisfied with the nurturing in the school and were comfortable or somewhat comfortable with the nurturing role of the school in the specified themes. The need for closer co-operation regarding nurturing was moderately perceived. However, the qualitative data showed that a large proportion of the parents did not really know how the school worked regarding nurturing and therefore found it difficult to answer the questionnaire. A few carers also felt that nurturing is not really part of the school's mission, while a large proportion were very satisfied with the school's efforts in this area. On average, they seemed to have confidence in the nurturing role of the school and felt that it was a good support for the nurturing role of the home. On the whole, lack of time and insufficient communication were perceived as obstacles to cooperation. A statistically significant difference was found between school sizes and how comfortable guardians were regarding the nurturing theme: behaviour and etiquette. Carers with children in a small school were more comfortable with the nurturing role of the school in the stated theme than carers with children in a large school. The following correlations were identified: The better the child did in primary school, both academically but also socially and behaviourally, the more satisfied the parent was with the nurturing in the school, more comfortable with the stated nurturing themes and perceived the quality of nurturing in the school to be higher. The more positive the carer's attitude towards the curriculum's nurturing objectives, the more satisfied they were with the nurturing in primary school. The higher the guardian's perception of the quality of co-operation, the lower the need for co-operation and the more satisfied they were with primary school nurturing. Thus, the problem remained a lack of clarity about the school's approach to nurturing and mutual exchange between school and home. Improved dialogue and common guidelines could be crucial to strengthen cooperation, which in turn can have a positive impact on the holistic development of children.
  • Lindgren, Emilia (2023)
    According to the national core curriculum for basic education, formative assessment is central to every pupil’s individual learning process. Formative assessment can be defined as response that aims to support the pupil in understanding the goals for learning, perceive their own progress in relation to the set goals, and give the pupil tools to reach the specific learning goals for each subject. Interactive methods, such as discussion, self-assessment, and peer assessment are part of formative assessment. Previous studies have shown that pupils often become passive receivers in the assessment process and don’t feel that they benefit from the type of formative assessment they have received and that teachers have difficulties supporting pupils’ abilities to assess their own work. This study examines what kind of formative assessment pupils perceive as beneficial for their learning, and how self-assessment, according to teachers and pupils, can be used in order to support learning and the pupils’ abilities to self-assess. The study takes a qualitative, phenomenographic approach. The material was gathered by conducting focus group interviews with pupils in grades 5–6 and teachers for grades 1–6. The informants formed nine groups of three to four pupils and two groups of three to four teachers per group. The interviews were transcribed and analysed thematically. The results show that considering the pupils’ prior knowledge, setting clear goals, and using versatile materials and methods, along with continuous, personal, motivating, and fair feedback are types of formative assessment that pupils perceive as supportive of their learning. The results also point out that efficient self-assessment requires clearly stated goals and instructions, and should be conducted alongside wider work processes, with support from discussion between pupils and teachers.