Thursday, March 05, 2009

Finnish National Standards

I've been spending some time perusing the Finnish National Core Curriculum for Basic Education lately and finding it quite pleasant. It is hard not to like a set of standards that puts on page 2:

The pupils will learn to recognize the importance of aesthetic experiences to the quality of life.

"Quality of life!" That's a difficult concept to articulate in American education. We've pretty much got a choice of:

  • Don't talk to me about art until everyone's up to grade level in math, reading, science, and (once we write the test) technology literacy (NCLB-ism).
  • Art, your pathway to a creative class job (P21-ism).
  • Eat your art, it's good for you (Core-ism).

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