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Browsing by discipline "Kasvatustiede"

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  • Taskinen, Kirsti (2020)
    This study examines early childhood education teachers’ experiences of the participation of 1–3-year-old children in the early childhood education and care plan (known as an ECEC plan) process. The process includes prepara-tion for the discussion of the child’s ECEC plan, discussion and the creation of the plan, and implementing and evaluating the plan. Section 23 of the new Act on Early Childhood Education and Care states that the child’s opinion must be heard at every stage of the ECEC plan process. Previous studies have indicated that the partici-pation of the child has not been implemented in accordance with targets. The purpose of this study was to ascertain how early childhood education teachers define child participation. Another point of interest for the study was to map the methods used by early childhood education teachers to support the child’s participation in the ECEC plan process. The study was carried out using semi-structured interviews, with seven early childhood education teachers chosen for the study. Interviews were carried out individually and data-oriented content analysis was used to analyse the material. According to early childhood education teachers, the participation of 1–3-year-old children in the ECEC plan process involved observing the child and discussing with the child to ascertain their interests, strengths and needs, recording the information in the child’s ECEC plan, team discussions and expanding on the child’s perspective, listening to the child’s parents and making use of their knowledge of their own child, and implementing the ECEC plan in everyday life, as well as the child’s opportunity to influence joint activities. The participation of 1–3-year-olds in the ECEC plan process has also given some teachers pause for thought. One challenge was ascertaining the perspective of a small child if the child was not yet able to speak. According to the results of the study, observing and interviewing the child using a new ECEC form to ascertain the child’s wishes and interests were significant for the participation of the child during the preparation phase. Child participation was also supported by daily discussions with parents, information about the child obtained from the initial discussion meeting held when the child began day-care, and team discussion on observations of the child. The new ECEC form and shared information about the child highlighted the child’s perspective in discussions. Participation was strengthened by child group activities, which were organised based on the targets outlined in the children’s ECEC plans, as well as on an assessment of pedagogical methods. Flexibility in the daily routine, activities initiated by the child, pictures and supportive signs, and voting were all methods of implementing child participation. Photographs, storycrafting, an educational portfolio, naming a star child of the week, and video recording made activities and significant experiences of the child visible. In order to increase child participation in the ECEC plan process, illustrated support for interviews with children and the presence of the child at ECEC plan discussions were proposed.
  • Saarinen, Jade Luna (2018)
    Aims. The aim of my research was to study the use of social media of 15–17 year old Finnish teenagers and what effects social media has on them. Earlier studies have shown that an average Finnish teenager uses social media approximately 15 hours during a week. It has also been studied that the social media has an effect on self-esteem. I chose social media and it’s effects on teenagers as my research subject because as a phenomenom the social media is rather young, which is why there has not been done many Finnish studies focusing on the teenagers’ social media use. My research assignment is to find out what kind of social media users teenagers are and what kind of effects social media has on their self experiences. Methods. The study was qualitative and 45 teenagers from age 15 to 17 participated in it. The data was collected with an internet questionnaire which was shared through social media, and it contained mainly open questions. The data was analysed by using qualitative data-based content analysis. Results and conclusions. Most of the teenagers used social media 3–4 hours daily or more. It was used for entertainment, for finding information, communication, current affairs, sharing one’s own life experiences and for finding inspiration, among other things. Almost half of the teenagers were bullied over social media. Appearance was also essential in the social media. Social media created ideals for appearance for teenagers and set them under critique, gave them false image of reality and made the teenagers look for the acceptance through outlooks. 31 of them had gotten positive comments on their appearance from social media and 13 had gotten negative comments. Those comments had an impact on the teenagers’ self-esteem, mood and feelings. Teenagers had also objects of identification and admiration in social media, such as videobloggers, artists, models and their own friends, and they were influenced by them. They felt that social media had many positive and negative effects on their lives. Positive effects were the rise of self-esteem, being more brave in expressing one’s own opinion, the possibilities of keeping in touch with other people and being the source of inspiration, motivation and information, among other things. The negative effects were the social media taking too much time and creating pressure, its bad effect on physical condition and sleep, distortion of self-image, the mean people and the need to be always within reach, among other things. The results of this study implicate that the social media has a comprehensive effect on the lives of the teenagers and their self experiences.
  • Naskali, Tuomo (2014)
    In the past few decades, Western countries have evolved from industrial societies to information societies. Skills that are useful in life and work are not the same as before. Schools as an institution have been criticized for lagging behind in change. For this reason,21st Century Skills have been developed to work as a model of skills useful in the future. The aim of this study is to observe the ICT projects of some first-graders in one school through the lens of 21st Century Skills. My goal is to study which 21st Century Skills were learned in the projects and how. iPads were used in the projects; two classes made multimedia books of themselves and one made video interviews about different professions. The pupils also used Edmodo, which is a social media and learning environment aimed at schools. Their activity in Edmodo is also studied from the viewpoint of 21st Century Skills. Social media has changed the way people live and work in a global level, but it has not been used or studied much in elementary schools. My study is a case study whose subjects were pupils from three 1st grade classes (age ~7) in an elementary school in Helsinki metropolitan area. The school has a pedagogical ICT support person who planned and carried out the projects together with the class teachers. The projects took place in April-May 2013 and I was present at the school to observe the lessons. The data of my study comprises of my own observation notes, the video material I filmed and the content the pupils produced in Edmodo. The data is analyzed with theorybased themes as per a model of 21st Century Skills. All three classes were analyzed together. The data reflects the future challenges of teaching. Many contents of 21st Century Skills were learned in the projects. Especially, skills related to social interaction, technology, creativity and problem solving were learned. The pupils shared ideas and solved problems together. Their actions were creative and target-oriented. By using iPads the pupils worked on their ICT skills and learned to use new apps and services quickly. Edmodo supported social and technological learning goals. Some pupils uploaded a lot of content to Edmodo, some only a little. Although social media was used only briefly by the students, they learned vital skills for upcoming years in school.
  • Joki, Johanna (2019)
    The aim of this study was to research the prosocial behavior of children from three to four years old during their playtime at daycare. This subject has links with some current questions concerning the early education. The theoretical background is based on the theories of moral development and play. The earlier research has given different views on young childrens capability to behave prosocially. The latest studies have shown that some forms of prosocial behavior are possible for children during their first year of life. The purpose of this study is to research the forms of childrens prosocial behavior and to find out the most frequent form. The connections between the prosocial behavior and different plays are also considered. The qualitative methods were used in this study. The material was collected through ethnographic observation at a daycare center in Espoo. 13 children were participated in the observation. In the addition of ethnographic methods also conversation analysis was used. The data was litterated and analysed by conversation analysis. The ethnographic notebook based on the observation was utilised over the analysis. Four main classes of prosocial behaviour were found out. They are helping, comforting, pleasing and sharing. The new sub class of prosocial behaviour was composed and named as “predicting one’s desires”. Sharing turned out to be the most frequent form of prosocial behaviour among the observated children. Prosocial behaviour was more frequent during home play compared to other playing situations. All the children were capable to behave prosocially at least in some situations. Based on these results is possible to think that children from 3 to 4 years old already have some capacities to perspective taking and empathy. The connection between home play and prosocial behaviour can be explained partially by the nature of home play. At this age home play includes a lot of features of role play. The information concerning childrens prosocial behaviour can be utilised in the early education and specially in positive pedagogy.
  • Vesalainen, Elina (2013)
    The purpose of this study was to examine what type of sleep pedagogy is used in kindergarten groups consisting of 3- to 5-year-old children. The term sleep pedagogy, in this content, means such pedagogical practices, which enhance falling asleep and gaining restfulness. The goal was to increase information about attitudes and pedagogical practices regarding naptime. At the same time the intention was to learn more about how children's needs for rest and sleep are catered to and on whose conditions naps and rest time is organised. There is very little prior research done on kindergarten children's naps and rest time. Most of the existing knowledge is about toddlers sleep or is focused on sleep disturbances. The study was conducted in April 2012. It included 14 kindergarten groups from one municipal day care area. The data was collected by interviewing the kindergarten teachers and by observing the groups. The observations were based on a semi-structured observation sheet, which focused on the physical environment as well as on the events and the atmosphere. The observations were carried out so that they began when the activity prior to naptime was ended (typically lunch). They lasted until most of the children were peaceful and the adult stopped the activity (for example reading a story) in the nap room. The study was performed during one day in each group. Besides the interviews and observations, kindergarten teachers filled in a background form and the nap rooms were photographed. The analysis method was phenomenological, which means that the subject was examined as a phenomenon entity. The interviews were analysed following the stages of the phenomenological analysis method. For analysing the observations a specific scale was created. The scale consisted of four parts, which measured 1) the structure of the activity, 2) the quality of the adults interaction, 3) the adults essence in the nap room and 4) the physical distance between the adult and the children. These four areas were measured, and compared to the tranquillity of the children. The results of this study show that the groups of 3- to 5-year-old children are balancing between different sleep needs. Besides the different needs, the attitudes of the pedagogues, the whole system of kindergarten tasks, the physical environment and children's' parents all have their impact on the way how nap time is arranged. The interviews indicate that kindergarten teachers value highly the naptime, but they underline the difference in napping and resting. The study shows clear connections between children's' restfulness and the pedagogical acts. According to this study, factors that increase children's' tranquillity are a tranquil essence and a child-oriented interaction of the adult as well as the clear structure of the transition activities and naptime. The study offers valuable information on kindergartens naps and rest time. This information can directly be utilized in planning naptime and especially in situations were naptime is considered challenging.
  • Suortti, Outi Elina (2008)
    Aims. The beginning point of this research was confusion between studies claiming, that children mature Metalinguistic to read at 6-7 of age, and the fact, that in Montessori playschools children easily start writing and reading at age 3 to 5. Aim was also find out how conception of slow Metalinguistic development has started, and if there is some evidence of phoneme awareness of reading of young children in the field of research of reading. Aim was also seek evidence of the sensitive period of reading as Montessori described it. The research also wanted to turn up, if phoneme awareness only develops in children, who work with graphemes and with reading, or could it be found in children, who do not. The mean was to research how the Montessori reading material supports child's Metalinguistic development, when child begins learning to read. The research plans to represent knowledge about how young children learn to write and read. Methods. Research performed in ordinary kindergarten and in Montessori playschool in Espoo. In kindergarten observed six children, age 3-4, at eight grapheme-rhyme sessions from January to April 2007, and conducting a test based on Chaney's (1992) study of phoneme awareness of young children. In Montessori kindergarten were observed 17 children about their phoneme awareness and reading competition from January 2007 to March 2008. Their developments in reading were also measured three times from 1.9.07 to 20.3.08 with classification constructed for this study, loosely based on Chall's (1983) reading stages. The Montessori reading material was analyzed about the influence they have to a child's Metalinguistic development. This was done based to theory and its concepts from the field of research of reading; phoneme awareness, morphological, syntactical and semantic consciousness. Results and conclusions. Research proved that children 3-5 have naturally developed phoneme awareness. In kindergarten and in Montessori playschool children between 2 and 4 could do phoneme synthesis, and in the latter they also could do phoneme segmentation of words. Montessori reading material guided children gradually, except to read, also to observe and absorb Metalinguistic knowledge. Children learned to write and read. At the last evaluating day almost 50 % of children write and read clauses or stories, and 82 % could read at least words. Children can develop Metalinguistic awareness, while using the Montessori materials for learning to write and read. To reach literacy is easy for children because of their phoneme awareness.
  • Koivumäki, Anu (2015)
    The purpose of this thesis is to find out how five to six year old boys' need for support with their gross motor skills is associated with their other skills, such as cognitive and social skills. The scope of the material also allowed to study the associations between gross motor skills and daily functions of early childhood education. I study these other functions in my third research problem; how does the need for support with gross motor skills impact the daily activities of the child in his early childhood education. Based on earlier research, it is known that motor skills have an impact on the development of the child. My assumption was that my research data would support earlier research. The data used in this thesis was part of the University of Helsinki "Orientaation lähteillä" research project material. The data had been collected from 45 day cares, including both kindergartens and childminders in Central Uusimaa and Hämeenlinna. The material had been collected by interviewing and observing the children, and having the teachers evaluate the children's different skills. Background information and information about the learning environment was also collected. This thesis is based on the material's Needs plenty of support with gross motor skills claim, which had been evaluated on a five point scale. The data was delimited to boys aged five to six (N=243). The data was analysed using cross tabulation and correlations from child observations and skills assessments. This thesis is quantitative, and the SPSS software was used to study the associations between gross motor skills and other skills and functions. The results of this thesis show that children who needed support with their gross motor skills, often also needed support with their cognitive and social skills. The need for support with gross motor skills also impacted the child's everyday activities. A child who had a need for support with their gross motor skills played less imaginary games, spent less time in guided outdoor activities, and focused his attention more frequently on non-social targets than other children. The children who needed plenty of support where physically less active and less committed during the kindergarten day. In conclusion, motor development influences many other areas of a child's development, and therefore special attention needs to be paid to promoting motor development in early childhood education.
  • Palm, Noora (2020)
    Objectives. The purpose of the study is to study the experiences of 5–6-year-old kindergarteners from swimming school. The study is interested in what kind of experiences children have from swimming school, how they describe their own swimming skills and what significance play plays in swimming school. The theoretical background of the study is built on three main themes. Initially, pre-school children are treated as mobile, physical activity, motor development and learning, basic motor skills, exercise skills and motivation in children's exercise. The next big theme is swimming lessons and the concepts that are central to it. Finally, we turn to experience as a phenomenon. The study has a self-reflective approach. Methods. Twelve children aged 5 to 6 years participated in the study. The group of children was from a kindergarten in South Helsinki. The research material was obtained through participatory observation and an individual interview. I myself work as a teacher in a swimming school group. The analysis of the research interview material was performed by phenomenological and narrative analysis. Results and conclusions. Children’s experiences of swimming school varied according to their previous experiences in the water. They also felt, for example, that different things were nice and not nice things at a swimming school. Most of the children felt that they had learned to swim during swimming school. The children were motivated towards the swimming school. This was evident in their interest in training, and their motivation also emerged in the children's speeches. The importance of free play in the swimming school was highlighted in the children's interviews as well as during the swimming school period. Time must be left for free play, even if it is a guided swimming school. Free play was important for the children and learning also takes place during it. In general, good teaching and differentiation as well as individualization are emphasized in swimming lessons.
  • Aalto, Severi (2017)
    Objectives. The aim of this study was to examine the motivation of 7th to 9th graders in secular ethics and the factors related to that. The study also examined the connections between the factors behind motivation and connections related to pupils background information. Pupils' interest in different contents of secular ethics was also explored. Method. This study was a quantitative survey, but it also included a qualitative section. The motivation scale of the questionnaire is based on Pintrich's (1988) MSLQ ((Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire) and Ruohotie's (1993) APLQ (Abilities for Professional Learning Questionnaire). The data was collected in April 2015. 75 pupils from four schools in Helsinki answered the questionnaire. The quantitative data was analyzed by using PASW Statistics 18. The answers from qualitative section were analyzed by using content analysis. Results and conclusions. The study showed that pupils were motivated by and interested in secular ethics. Secular ethics was also regarded as an important and useful subject. Several correlating factors affected to pupils' motivation. The intrinsic orientation correlated with many motivation factors. One of the crucial findings was the strong correlation between intrinsic orientation and the way teachers interacted with the pupils. There were no differences between boys and girls in their motivation factors except (in relation to) teaching material and methods. Good grades were connected between expectations of success and beliefs of intrinsic succeeding. The study also revealed that pupils were motivated by several contents of the secular ethics but moral and ethics were the most important. The results of this study can be utilized in the teaching of secular ethics in increasing pupils' motivation.
  • Vihavainen, Tiina (2016)
    The aim of this master's thesis was to find out what kind of promoting and hindering supervisory experiences doctors who have graduated from Aalto University School of Engineering had during their doctoral studies and what kind of differences were found between those experiences. Based on previous research literature it can be stated that the quality of supervision of doctoral studies has an effect on the experiences of doctoral students, their well-being and their graduation. My data consists of 10 theme interviews of doctors who have graduated from Aalto University School of Engineering in 2012-2014. I used qualitative content analysis to analyse my data. Based on my research results, the promoting factors of doctoral studies include high-quality and sufficient supervisory relationships and supervision of the research process. The most significant supervisory relationship was the one with the personal supervisor. Competence, pedagogical know-how, enthusiasm, prioritizing supervising and regularity of the supervisory meetings were valued when the personal supervisor is concerned. Supervision of the research process had promoted doctoral studies if supervision and feedback were received regularly; supervision was supportive and motivating; and it was focused on the content of the doctoral thesis, usage of research methods and the study processes of the doctoral student. Poor-quality and insufficient supervisory relationships and supervision of the research process were experienced as hindering factors of doctoral studies. Personal supervisor who lacked competence, interest and time on academic supervising was a significant hindering factor in doctoral studies. Research group activities did not promote student's own research if the research agenda of the group was remarkably different from the research topic of the student. The lack of peer group activities was also experienced as a hindering factor. Supervision of the research process was experienced hindering one's doctoral studies if the student did not receive enough support on the contents of the doctoral thesis, usage of research methods, planning his or her studies and research, academic writing and publishing or applying for finances. Based on the differences of the supervisory experiences I split the interviewees into four groups: 1) satisfied with supervision, 2) those who described contradictory supervisory experiences, 3) unsatisfied with supervision and, 4) those who extended their supervisory network. Based on my results it can be stated that there were remarkable differences between supervisory experiences of the interviewees. The quantity of supervision varied from daily supervisory discussions to years of lonely work and the quality of supervision varied from productive collaboration with supervisor and other researchers to indifferent and insufficient supervision. To improve the supervisory experiences of doctoral students it is recommended in this master's thesis that supervisory teams could be used, peer group activities could be organized, supervision could be increased especially in the planning stage of studies and research, more research method courses could be organized and postgraduates could be given support in applying for finances.
  • Repo, Oskari (2018)
    In this research I analyzed how music is described in Tove Jansson's moomin books. I also analyzed descriptions of music as an element of characterization. Many researches concerning moomin books have been done earlier. Earlier research points out that music has a significant role in the world of moomins and in the life of moomin characters. Analyzing music as an element in characterization was however recent opening to the field of research. I chose four moomin books to be my main material because there were clearly most of descriptions of music in these books. My material were Comet in Moominland, Moominland Midwinter, Tales from Moominvalley and Moominvalley in November. Most of descriptions of music played role in characterizations of Snufkin, Fillyjonk and Too-ticky, so I focused on these characters. I used content analysis based thematic approach as my method when finding answer to the question how music is described in moomin books. With the help of close reading, I tried to find out how characters are constructed with music. In this research it found out that music is described in Tove Jansson's moomin books with songs and lyrics, with descriptions of instruments and with descriptions of tunes and notes. Songs and lyrics constructed character of Too-ticky by telling Too-ticky's accepting attitude towards the uncertainty that exists in the world. Songs and lyrics didn't significantly construct character of Snufkin. There were lots of different instruments in moomin books but the only instrument which constructed characters in a significant way was the mouth-organ. The mouth-organ constructed character of Snufkin by showing his features and emotions. The mouth-organ constructed character of Fillyjonk by acting as the symbol of creativity and balance. In this research also the nature was considered as an instrument. Snufkin heard his longing of freedom and loneliness in the sound of the nature. Tunes and notes told about Snufkin's inner conflict between loneliness and communality. Tunes and notes also described Snufkin's process of composing. That process of composing personificated as a little creature called Teety-woo in The Spring Tune- short story. Tunes and notes constructed character of Fillyjonk in the way that they took her to the new levels of her identity.
  • Suomalainen, Heidi (2017)
    The purpose of this study is to find out how boys are portrayed in the Finnish ABC books through different decades. The data of the study consist of ABC books from the 1950s, 1970s, 1990s, 2000 and 2010s. The newest ABC book is published in 2016, and it follows the Finnish study plan of 2014. The ABC books chosen for this study have been published during the last 60 years. With 10 or 20 years' time difference between each book, it is possible study the changes in the portrayal of boy characters. The study focuses on the texts and pictures where the boy characters are shown. Special attention is paid to the looks and action of the boys in the ABC books. The boy characters are compared to the girl characters presented in the ABC books, in order to analyze whether the way the boys are being described differs from the way the girls are being described. The assumption is that there are some remarkable differences in this portrayal, especially when comparing the oldest ABC book from the 1950s to that of 2010s. Previous research has shown that the great changes taking place during the 1960s has also had its effect on the ABC books of that time; there should be a considerable decrease in stories and pictures related to national identity. As a new feature after the 1960s, the equality in friendships between the boy and girl characters has emerged. However, a gendered portrayal of the characters is still to some extent visible in ABC books until end of 1990s. The method of the study was content analysis. Each ABC book was first analyzed in detail after which the results were compared with each other. Special research questions were used to find out how the boys were shown during different times and to what extent the portrayal of boys and girls differed from each other. A context analytical approach is visible in the way that the norms and values of each ABC book were mirrored in relation to their own time. The results of the study show that even if the way boys are described has changed a lot from 1950s to 2010s, some features have remained the same. In the ABC books from 1950s and 1970s boys are shown as brave and active actors. Starting 1990s there is more sensitiveness in the way boys are described than in the earlier ABC books. Starting from the 2000s the boy and girl characters do not differ remarkably from each other. In the ABC book of 2016 the boys are clearly portrayed as background characters, being more quiet than the girls.
  • Pihlainen, Jepa (2016)
    Goals: This Master's thesis described emotion and mood regulation during university studies. It used models both from emotion regulation and learning related emotions literature. It is established in literature that different study goals are connected to different emotions. However, this theme has not been linked with questions of emotion regulation strategies: How the choice between them affects experienced learning related emotions, and how strategies and goals of emotion regulation are linked to study goals. This thesis addressed those questions. Research questions were: Which affects and strategies of affect regulation did Finnish university students from Faculty of Arts describe when talking about their university studies? Were there differing affect regulation profiles? Which affect regulation strategies were preferred in different profiles? What were affect regulation goals of different profiles? How did preferred regulation strategies and regulation goals interact with study goals? Methods: These questions were addressed by a qualitative inductive content analysis. The data consisted of eight semi-structured individual interview texts in which students of Faculty of Arts told about their paths as university students. These interviews were selected from a bigger interview database, using the results of a questionnaire on learning related emotions. Results and conclusions: The main results were the affect regulation profiles that were extracted from the data. Students of each profile had similar affect regulation goals and preferences and similar study goals. Following earlier studies, cognitive change was adaptive emotion regulation strategy and rumination was maladaptive emotion regulation strategy. However, many other emotion regulation strategies were used both in adaptive and maladaptive ways. The students whose affect regulation strategies did combine both a goal to feel good and a study goal of acquiring needed knowledge and skills, were the ones who experienced studying to be more pleasant and recovered more quickly from adverse events. When affect regulation goals and study goals are aligned, affects get regulated well and the studies proceed even in the face of adversities. When a student's affect regulation goals and study goals are incompatible, affect regulation is more difficult and the studies might not progress as smoothly. Therefore, affect regulation goals might be more important than regulation strategies in making regulation adaptive.
  • Hjerppe, Hanna (2016)
    The Finnish National Core Curriculum 2014 sets a demand that schools should create a culture that supports student participation. This is based on, among others, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, which guarantees children the right to participate in issues related to their lives. The right to participate, however, does not by itself lead children to actually participate in a meaningful way. Participation skills can and should be learned. Therefore, as these also are significant concepts in the curriculum, we would assume to find them represented in the educational material also. Teaching and learning has been driven by the educational materials such as books and teacher's materials for decades. This study focuses on examining how much and in what ways these educational materials in Finnish and literature include the students' expression of their opinion. More specifically, in this study it is analyzed what kind development of participation skills the examined material is aimed at. The data consisted of the grade 3 and 4 Finnish and literature students' books and teacher's materials for from the two biggest publishers Sanoma Pro and Otava, based on the 2014 core curriculum. The analysis followed standard procedures of qualitative content analysis and contained some quantification of data. As the analytical concepts there were used, among others, the concepts of argumentation skills and agency. The results indicate the educational material examined were very conservative in using tasks and assignments that include the students own opinions. The tasks did contain some autonomy but were most often on a close-ended scope and included trivial topics with respect to the students' lives. As the scope of the topics was controlled, these kinds of tasks were not considered to be optimal in developing skills of participation. Also, the tasks did not guide the students in constructing an argument, even though it was required in many tasks. The results of this study should encourage schools into reflecting on how choosing the right materials could support students building of expressing their opinions, and thus, developing their participation skills. The authors of the materials, as well as the publishers, should also reflect on how to incorporate more tasks designed at building participation skills in various ways, as it is truly a crucial skill in the changing world.
  • Söderman, Johanna (2018)
    Aim. Intercultural relations have been studied in multiple fields in different ways, but intercultural encounters are often seen as self-evident and not requiring deeper investigation. Studying intercultural encounters can, however, help us understand better the relations and equality between groups. The aim of this study is to recognize how, in the context of homework clubs, genuine encounters form between people and how these encounters create belonging. Methods. I used ethnography as my research method and collected the data in two different homework clubs organized by Finnish Red Cross in the Greater Helsinki Area. I observed the two clubs twelve times and interviewed eleven of the homework club tutors during Spring 2016. My ethnographic analysis was triangulative, and it was influenced by narrative and thematic analysis methods. Conclusion. According to my study results, a desire to see the cultural other favorably is necessary in genuine encounters where the other is recognized and acknowledged as similar to oneself despite differences. The desire to see the other favorably appears in my data as the ability to receive the differences of others in such a way that they are considered a normal part of the interaction. Receiving differences seems to be the most significant feature in genuine encounters, according to my study results. Generating belonging, on the other hand, can be seen as inclusive and considerate conversations in my data. As an indirect result, I was able to deduct that homework clubs are natural spaces for intercultural interaction, which means mutual learning can happen and thus a third culture, which is not just your or my culture but our culture, is created together.
  • Värtö, Saara (2015)
    Aims. The aim of my research was to study those teachers who have not undergone any teacher education and their thinking about teacher's work. This phenomenon was chosen as the research subject because it has been studied very little compared to the research on regular teachers in Finnish schools. My research task was to study the thoughts on and experiences of working as a teacher and formal qualifications of teachers without teacher education. Moreover, the aim was to outline the teaching career of these teachers as well as their thoughts on and experiences of teacher education and professional development. Methods. The research was conducted through literature and through the narratives of six people who either are working or have been working as teachers without any teacher education. Three of these people worked as teachers without any teacher education at the time of the research whereas the other three had applied and been accepted into teacher education after having already worked as teachers. One of the latter had also already graduated with a certificate of education. This was a qualitative study and the data was gathered by doing theme interviews and analysed by using inductive qualitative analysis. Results and conclusions. Many similarities were found in the narratives of the interviewees and a more detailed examination of the themes revealed some outliers. The ways the interviewees had ended up working as teachers were very similar but their plans for the future differed. The thoughts on and experiences of working as a teacher were quite similar whereas formal qualifications elicited contradictory thoughts among the interviewees. Teacher education also divided their opinions. The interviewees who had undergone teacher education evaluated the effectiveness of the education in a similar manner. Nearly all the interviewees also criticised teacher education widely. The interviewees felt they had progressed in different areas during their career, even though most of them had not actively sought personal or professional development. Overall, the research elucidated a phenomenon that had been studied very little beforehand. It also revealed some important themes in education policy, which merit further study.
  • Harkoma, Sivi (2016)
    The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a novel pedagogical intervention (PedaSens) to increase adult emotional availability and to support adult–child interaction in toddler day care groups. The research questions are: 1) How did the emotional availability appear in adult-child interaction of the group? 2) How did the emotional availability of the adult-child interaction change in relation to the control group before and after the measurement? 3) What are the effects of adult educational background and children group size to the emotional availability of the adults and children? Most research on children's attachment and interactions has focused solely on dyadic parent-child contexts. However, according to interaction and neurobiology research there is accumulating evidence about the importance of sensitive interactions in multiple relationships on child's biological brain plasticity and stress response regulation. Previous research has demonstrated that a child seems to benefit from a number of day care-group relationships that are fostered in co-operation with other children and adults. Positive relationships are formed when the adults stay in interaction and respond sensitively to the needs of the child as well as to the whole group. A total of 45 kindergarten professionals and 15 public day care centers from southern Finland participated in the study. The total number of toddler groups was 17, with children 1–4 years of age. The data was collected by videotaping and observing the interaction between the adults and the children as part of the normal daily activities in the group. The first EA assessment between the intervention and control groups was conducted before the intervention and the second one six months after the beginning of the intervention. During the study period participants had five supervision sessions with the trainer. Non-parametric statistical analysis revealed a significant effect between the first and the second measurement on the adult interaction non-intrusiveness in the research group. This effect was not visible in the control group assessments which suggests that emotional availability of the intervention group seems to have increased during the EA intervention. In other ways, effects of the intervention were not significant in repeated measurements between intervention and control group (One-way ANOVA). Teacher's emotional availability in the dimension of non-hostility was significantly higher compared to other professional groups in the first measurement. These differences seemed to level off during the intervention and after the six month's study period differences between the professional groups were not significant. The study revealed the benefits of the pedagogical interventions to the development of early childhood education quality. It also enables critical conversation concerning the measurements used in pedagogical interventions.
  • Karlsson, Kati (2015)
    The aim of this study was to describe the experiences of the mentors of adult practical nurse students. The focus was on "how the mentors experience the process of on-the-job learning" and "how the mentors can support student's professional growth during the on-the-job learning period". The data of this study consist of 12 semi-structured interviews of mentors of adult practical nurse students. The interviews were first tape recorded and then transcribed verbatim. Mentors described mentoring of students' as a process, that consist of elements such as mentor's own perceptions of her role as a mentor, adult learner's attitude towards learning, support of professional growth and the meaning of environment and support. The mentoring was seen as a process. Mentoring of an adult student was seen as a challenge but also as a chance because the adult learners do have plenty of experiences. Mentors pointed out various factors that have an effect on success of mentoring. Such factors were: mentors experience of their own role, students' attitude towards learning and guidance, supporting professional growth and importance of working environment as well co-operation with educational institution. Mentors experience of being an expert of their own work was important as well to be able to adjust guidance in benefit of a student's individual needs and goals. Adult learners were expected to take an active role of their own learning and to take benefit of their own experiences. Mentors did feel that they were responsible for students' professional growth. Working environment end co-operation with educational institution had important role in successful guidance. Mentors opinion was that guidance during the work-place learning should be mainly emphasized on mentor and workplace. Co-operation with educational institution was considered important but mentors also felt that they are best experts of their own work. Mentors hoped and expected support, resources and respect to their mentoring. .
  • Fager, Tuomas (2015)
    The meaning of this research is to describe how growth mindset and fixed mindset are connected to unemployed adult learners' agency and how these mindsets occur in their narrations. The research problem and question layout in this research are based on Carol Dwecks theory of growth and fixed mindset and on Albert Banduras theory on self-efficacy. In these theories of growth and fixed mindset seem to affect learners actions in different life sectors. Earlier research findings have shown that growth mindset affect on the state of performance and develop in turn one's fixed mindset seem to lead to fail. Aim of this research was to find how either one mindset behind the action would occur in learners' narrations. Research was carried out qualitatively. The material was gathered using individual interview and was analyzed using content analysis. Ten interviewees that studied in a Liberal education institution where participated. Age distribution of the examinees varied between 33 and 58. Findings indicated that mindsets occurred when students described their agency. The following phenomenon's were found in analysis on growth mindset: self-developing, effort adoring and self-efficacy. Instead fear of failure, lack of self-efficacy and lack of effort were significant in narrations of fixed mindset. Self-efficacy and growth mindset occurred together. Mindsets were bound by the situation in different contexts and occurrences. Self-efficacy and growth mindset appeared often together.
  • Heikkilä, Emilia (2018)
    This is a narrative research about the career paths of adult immigrants in Finland. The study is conducted in the context of a course that prepares immigrants to study in higher education in Finnish. Based on earlier research immigrants’ paths to work life are often complex and include overlapping studies. Different kinds of transitional courses and trainings have emerged to support educational transitions. There is little research of preparatory courses that focuses on the narratives of students taking part on a preparatory course. This research aims to describe career paths of the students studying in a preparatory course, and the most defining factors of the career paths progress. This phenomenon is specifically examined from a theoretic point of view based on agency of the students. 10 interviews were conducted with different students studying in a preparatory course. The course focused on the field of social and health services. The data was collected and analysed through the means of narrative methods. The interviews were semi-structured theme interviews that included questions about the students’ backgrounds, study experiences in the preparatory course and their visions for the future. The approach contains features of the life-course research branch in the narrative methodology. The results of the study illustrate the different factors on individual-, community- and society levels that affected the students’ career paths either progressively or restrictively. Different factors from individual attitudes and ways of action to policies of educational organizations affected the progression of career paths in the students´ stories. For example, motivation and Finnish language skills, the preparatory course and good studying opportunities in Finland appeared to be progressive factors for career paths. On the other hand, as restricting factors were described for example challenging life situation for studying, lack of high skill level Finnish teaching and bureaucratic obstacles in the education system. The different factors are put into perspective in type stories that describe the most typical career paths of the students in the preparatory course. For the highly educated the preparatory course seemed to be a secondary choice in their career paths and an adjustment to the current situation. The one’s with children described studying as motivating but challenging in their busy phase of life. The young adults who were the closest to the typical studying phase of life appeared to be very committed to their career choice and seemed to experience the least contradiction related to studying.