According to the new core curriculum (see the end of this document), all the Finnish schools should provide their pupils basic competences to use information independently and in interaction with others for problem-solving, argumentation, reasoning, drawing of conclusions and invention and they should have opportunities to analyse the topic being discussed critically from different viewpoints.
The pupils should be able to know where and how to search information and they should be able to evaluate the usability and reliability of sources.
The schools should support the pupils’ growth into active, responsible, and enterprising citizens. The pupils should be guided to act in a pluralistic society that understands diversity and respects human rights and equality in accordance with the values and principles of democracy.
The goal is to provide the pupils with a knowledge base of how the society works and how citizens can be involved as well as to encourage pupils to become independent societal and economic actors.
The quantity of information has increased and the variety of sources has been diversified. The media landscape is re-shaping constantly. It is more and more difficult to distinguish information from dis-information. The recent political campaigns have shown that we are entering to the post-factual era.
Schools and teachers need updated set of tools and methods in order to be able to meet the curricula goals and to provide support and encouragement for their pupils which are confronting and dealing with unclear and conflicting information.
IDEA & AIMS
The basic idea of this project is to adapt the proved fact-checking approach and methods used by Faktabaari into the education field. In order to do it properly, it is necessary to launch a pilot project to test how the adaptation could be done in the most effective way. The Finnish-French school of Helsinki will be an ideal test-bed for this purpose, because the school has a pupil population from pre-school to high school and it implements the new Finnish curricula (OPS 2016) since 1.8.2016. Therefore it will be possible to scale up the most effective methods and the best practices of the pilot project for all the Finnish schools.
One of the practical aims of the project is to provide the pupils the necessary knowledge, skills and competences as well as self-confidence, so that they could take actively and critically part in the debates and discussions in the future coming communal, presidential and EU elections.
SOME KEY DEFINITIONS
Medialiteracy is a 21st century approach to education. It provides a framework to access, analyze, evaluate, create and participate with messages in a variety of forms — from print to video to the Internet. Medialiteracy builds an understanding of the role of media in society as well as essential skills of inquiry and self-expression necessary for citizens of a democracy. (http://www.medialit.org/media-literacy-definition-and-more).
Multiliteracy is the competence to interpret, produce and make a value judgement across a variety of different texts, which will help the pupils to understand diverse modes of cultural communication and to build their personal identity. (OPS 2015)
Faktabaari (FactBar) is web-based fact-checking service for more fact-based public debate.
It is a non-partisan project using web and social media for collecting and distributing factual information with crowds and to crowds by creating win-win situations.
Faktabaari is run by Avoin yhteiskunta ry (Open Society Association) which is a Finnish transparency NGO enhancing transparency in society in cooperation with like-minded actors. It participates with empowering concrete projects like Faktabaari.
Faktabaari EDU intends to develop awarded Faktabaari methodology to the use of medialiteracy learning for future voters – our youth. We believe this is the best investment to use our experience and networks for something sustaining. We build on the Faktabaari success combined with best expertise of the pedagogical network provided by the Finnish Society on Media Education and piloting platform provided by French-Finnish School.
Finnish Society on Media Education has produced a website for media educators, which caters to the needs of people interested in media education and provides support to media education professionals: teachers of children and youths of all ages, researchers, students, educators, and parents of children and young people. It provides also detailed information on Finnish media education for our international colleagues and people who are interested in the work done in Finland.
METKA – Finnish Media Education Organisation provides etc. media education workshops for children and adults. In this project the LFF will be the test-bed for their new online media education materials for primary pupils. The new application will be published in 2017.
Lyceé franco-finlandais d’Helsinki (LFF – French-Finnish school of Helsinki) is state school situated in Munkkivuori. It will celebrate its 60th anniversary next April. LFF is relatively big school in the Finnish context – there are over 800 pupils from kindergarten to Baccalaureate level in the school. The LFF follows the new Finnish curriculum and it has strong emphasis on teaching languages – especially French.
OPS 2016 – THE NEW FINNISH CORE CURRICULUM
The national core curriculum was issued by the Finnish National Board of Education in 2014. Based on that all the Finnish school providers have been obliged to draw up the local curricula during the school year 2015-2016. These local curricula have been implemented since 1.8.2016 in almost all the Finnish schools.
The purpose of the core curriculum has been to provide a common ground for the local curricula and thus promote equality and equity in education and the rights of the pupils within the whole country. The core curriculum supports and steers the provision and implementation of basic education.
Like all the schools in Finland, the LFF has adapted the core curriculum to meet the local needs and the local curricula has been implemented since 1.8.2016.
The LFF operates as a learning community and encourages all of its members to learn. A learning community develops in dialogue. The community is strengthened by working together and through participation together with external actors.
A school culture that promotes participation, realises human rights and operates democratically, lays a foundation for the pupils’ growth into active citizens.
PILOT PROJECT #medialiteracy with future voters
Faktabaari medialiteracy work towards future voters has this far been an important track, but now it is time for a next step. With the relatively advanced Finnish School system curricula recently directed towards multiliteracy and medialiteracy as part of it, the momentum is there for tools to get make it to the grass root level to the youth seen in this project context as “future voters”. The school reform system raises multiliteracy as one of the core elements in order to educate active citizens capable of acting in our complex societies. Schools become learning platforms and they need tools like Faktabaari EDU for medialiteracy.
This pilot project build a pedagogical material with educators, journalists and students and uses Faktabaari and Factbar.eu channels to ensure a lasting impact to the lives of the participants while getting others interested via wide publicity expected for a very topical project.
Faktabaari as active member of the international fact-checking movement can guarantee a well-informed picture on the state of play of the media landscape and disinformation while it’s partners can ensure pedagogical approach to attain the youth. Journalism students carrying out most of the fact-checking with Faktabaari can also act as important mediators.
PROJECT OBJECTIVES & MILESTONES
- Produce materials to adapt Faktabaari methodology and forthcoming (10/2016) manual to youth (future voters) eg. under Faktabaari EDU – brand;
- Simultaneously enforce co-operation with The Finnish Society on Media Education to adapt proven Faktabaari methodology and manuals to materials helping educators and future voters to resist disinformation and factually inaccurate (election) statements with pilot case on Finnish presidential election 2018;
- Engage us to co-operation and pilot with Helsinki Finnish French School for testing and further developing the materials for wider use;
- Distribution of the materials and model to Finnish schools and youth workers with potential to spread the model with FSME, LFF principal Kari Kivinen and factbar.eu work to European audiences
More general objectives:
- Raise awareness of methods to fight election populism and pure disinformation by fact-checking tools adapted to future voters
- Offer pedagogical aids and web-based environment both directly to youngsters and indirectly to teachers and youth workers who can adapt it to their work
- Demonstrate that youth is capable to digest disinformation. Raise awareness and attain publicity via social media of the empowered youth capable of holding politicians and media accountable by using transparent fact-checking tools and spreading factually corrected material in social media
- Build up to the positive deterrent to candidates and media to base their arguments to facts, if available.
In regards the impact the experiences the model could be spread to European scale with Evens foundation and Finnish Society on Media Education in view of the 2019 EP elections Faktabaari plans to carry out with min. 10 European journalism schools (preparations have already been started).
Project milestones for the school year 2016-2017:
Workshop with LFF (Kari Kivinen), Finnish Society on Media Education (Isabella Holm), Faktabaari (Mikko Salo, Tuomas Muraja)
Kick-off meeting linked to major seminar on disinformation organized by Finnish Society on Media Education http://www.mediakasvatus.fi/tapahtuma/disinformaatioseminaari/
Workshop on adapting the Faktabaari manual to web-based materials for educators and youth
Tuomas Muraja will give a work-shop for the LFF students about the “Journalism Ethics and Standards” based on his new book “Faktat tiskiin”, which will be published this spring.
Teacher training session for the grade 3-6 teachers of LFF organized by METKA
A well prepared question-answer session between the communal election candidates of all parties and the upper secondary school students of LFF.
Developing the Faktabaari material with MSFE and LFF
Launch of Faktabaari EDU toolkit with Finnish Society on Media Education
Project milestones for school year 2017-2018:
- Educators would be provided August 2017 Faktabaari EDU fact-checker manuals and supportive web-material and example cases for “how to build up your own Faktabaari EDU”
- “Faktabaari EDU” –project bars could make fact-checks related to January 2018 presidential elections in their schools (tbc)
- The raw material tested could be further developed to media-literacy pedagogical tool to be used in schools etc. according to the new Finnish School curricula
Launching a competition of the biggest impact fact-check by “future voter” as part of Faktabaari national competition for best fact-checks
First pilot Faktabaari EDU course/workshop in a school or youth Organisation/association. LFF would be one of the pilot school – secondary school/high-school (Kari Kivinen)
Possible participation to Presidential election Faktabaari project next to professionals
Evaluation and potential to link to Factbar.eu project (Mikko Salo)
If you want to read more about the Finnish national core curriculum & multiliteracy click the following PDF compilation document:
National Core Curriculum for Basic Education 2014, Finnish National Board of Education, Publications 2016:5, Helsinki