A total of ten graduate students in the Fresh Teacher Course (FTC) of the Practical School Education Major (Second Faculty, Tennoji Campus) and departmental students who are members of the Overseas Educational Training Project (representative: Yukitaka Inohara), accompanied by three instructors, visited elementary schools in Sweden and Finland for 14 days from November 23rd to December 6th.
The Practical School Education Major carries out overseas educational training for FTC students as an educational project prior to their employment. This trip was the second, following a visit to Taiwan in the previous academic year. Professor Eiji Morita and Assistant Professors Kazuko Kashiwagi and Masako Tanemura participated.
The Project is composed of members who completed the Research in Educational Development (graduate school) as well as English Education for Elementary School Students (undergraduate department) courses during the previous term. After participating in simulated foreign language lessons for elementary school students and observing English lessons in Japan, the participants presented Japanese-style lessons overseas, conducted in English, in the two fields of science and mathematics, and language and foreign culture, with the goal of deeper educational interchange. The program, in which overseas educational practice is preceded by four months of preparation, contributes to participants' proficiency in instructional English, and receives support from the Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO).
Participants visited Linnaeus University and Kullaviksskolan School in Sweden and Åbo Akademi University's affiliated elementary school in Finland. Language education specialist Lecturer Emil Tyberg of Linnaeus University outlined for participants the goals and second-language learning assessment practices of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), and reviewed the university's enterprise collaboration program. Instructor Helena Sagar of Kullaviksskolan School provided information concerning the status of the language and science learning project, and participants conducted special lessons in seven grades over a period of three days. At Åbo Akademi University's affiliated elementary school, Principal Gun Jakobbson, who has visited our university, gave the participants an overview of Finland's current curriculum as well as the changes planned for 2016. Participants were impressed by the way teachers' everyday instructional approach is deeply rooted in the ""Finland Method."" Linnaeus University and Åbo Akademi University are also sister universities of Osaka Kyoiku University.
The participants also gave lessons in science (""Paper Airplanes and Lift""), language (""Japanese Classical Rakugo as Conveyed by the Story of Jigoku no Sobei"") and culture (""Finding the Japanese Spirit in My Neighbor Totoro"") in three locations, beginning with Kullaviksskolan School. Through the active opinions and responses demonstrated by elementary school students from grades one through six, the effectiveness of efforts made to teach using English, in terms of the theory of Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), was borne out. The participants were also able to experience first-hand how Scandinavian children are accustomed to and enjoy group learning, discussion, and deepening of analytical skills through writing.