Forty years of Finnish pre-school education: the development of curricula between 1972 and 2000

Tuija Turunen, Kaarina Maatta, Satu Uusiautti

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    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Since 2001 in Finland, all six year olds have had the right to free preschool education, and almost all pre-school-aged children take advantage of this opportunity. The purpose of this article is to dissect the development of Finnish pre-school education curricula within the societal context and within the changes in trends of curriculum planning between 1972 and 2000. The study analysed five curricula texts through qualitative content analysis by paying attention to the functions of pre-school education and the positioning of children and educators. The development of pre-school education consisted of four phases: (1) the era of pre-school education trials; (2) the era of heterogeneous pre-school education arrangements; (3) the era of changes in curriculum policies; and (4) the era of pre-school education establishment. The results indicated that the changes in pre-school education curricula related to the changes in Finnish society and in basic education.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)585-599
    Number of pages15
    JournalCurriculum Journal
    Volume23
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012

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