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Schools around the world
Even though there are schools all around the world, every country’s schools are very different. While they all see education as very important, children learn in a variety of different ways. We’ve picked some countries with very interesting education systems to share.
In China, schools teach children to improve their memory skills. When they get all the way to their university entrance exams, known as ‘gao-kao’, they will be expected to answer questions based on the facts they have memorised. This means that subjects like Maths and Science are very strong in China – you have to use facts to critically think.
Some people believe that the reason China focus on remembering facts is because their language is so intricate. With thousands of characters to remember, they start improving their memory skills from an early age. Morning exercise is also important. Every day before they start lessons, the whole school will line up in the playground and do stretching exercises to music.
All teachers in Finland have a Master’s degree. Children don’t start school until they are seven years old (although they can start education earlier in other programmes) and there are nine years of compulsory education. There is no primary or secondary school; their nine years of education will usually be in one school.
School starts a bit later than in the UK – somewhere between 9am and 9:45am. Often, Finnish children will have the same teacher for many years, rather than changing classrooms yearly. There is also a focus on learning Swedish in Finland, as they believe it is useful to know a language besides Finnish.
Education in South Korea is seen as very important. Many schools will start around 8am and finish around 4pm, however private school tutoring in the evenings is common. Many children will go to these schools for the evening to carry on studying. There is a very important exam called CSAT which will determine whether South Korean students will get into university, so children will work hard to make sure that they can do well in this exam. This means that while children are of school age, education is the top priority.
There are a lot of similarities across the world when it comes to education too. For example, we all have our favourite time of the day: lunch time! While a lunch break might be typical of any school around the world, it can be a much different activity for each child. In Japan, children are involved in making and serving the food to learn about nutrition. Children will also clean up after themselves once they have finished their food. In Norway, you won’t see any canteens – children bring in their own packed lunch. There are many countries where children usually go home for lunch and some schools even finish at lunch time for the day!
Do you know of any other interesting schools around the world? Why not do some research and feedback to your family, friends or class teacher? We’d love to know what other interesting facts you can find.