The integrated school day: Improving the educational offering of schools in Finland
Pulkkinen, L. (2012). The integrated school day: Improving the educational offering of schools in Finland. In C. Clouder, B. Heys, M. Matthes, & P. Sullivan (Eds.), Improving the quality of childhood in Europe 2012 (pp. 44-67). European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education.
© The Author, 2012
The term Integrated School Day (ISD) refers to a school day in which extracurricular activities and children’s care are organized at the school before and after lessons, and sometimes between lessons. In a three year project, the extracurricular activities consisted of two types of activities for each child as selected by the parents and child: 1) adult-supervised, mostly self-organized recreation and indoor and outdoor activities in the morning before school hours and/or in the afternoon after school hours, and 2) hobby clubs available for children to attend a few times per week to enrich the activities offered in the morning and afternoon. Seven schools with students in grades 1 - 9 (from age 7 to 15) participated in the 3 year ISD project. Activities organized at school significantly reduced the amount of unsupervised time spent by children. They also increased students’ satisfaction with school as estimated by 89% of teachers. In lower grades (from 1 to 4, ages 7 to 10), children who participated in the ISD programme for three years showed lower incidence of internalizing problem behaviours such as anxiety than children in schools where this programme was not available. In middle grades (from 4 to 6, ages 10 to 12), participation in arts and crafts and music was related to children’s higher prosocial behaviour, academic achievement, and working skills such as concentration and persistence. The chapter also describes the process which resulted in the school research project, and a collaboration of a researcher with politicians. The process affected Finnish school legislation. From the autumn of 2004, the law mandated that supervision of children’s activities in the mornings and afternoons should be available for all first- and second-grade children and should be financially supported by the government. ...
PublisherEuropean Council for Steiner Waldorf Education
Parent publication ISBN1900169304
Is part of publicationImproving the quality of childhood in Europe 2012
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