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Two children sitting on the floor building something from cardboard and tape
photo: Jaana Räsänen

Finnish schoolchildren are interested in architecture as a hobby

The fourth pupil and student survey organised by the Ministry of Education and Culture investigated the favourite hobbies of Finnish children and young people. In more than fifty schools, architecture ranked among the top ten most desired hobbies. 

The 2020 pupil and student survey examined the wishes of children and youths regarding leisure activities in connection with the school day. This time, the survey included a total of 76 hobbies. The survey was submitted to every one of Finland’s more than two thousand primary and middle schools, and a record number of children and youths from 1,459 schools responded across the country. Architecture ranked among the top ten most popular hobbies in 53 schools.

The survey results indicated that more than half of children and young people would like a new hobby. On average, girls and boys differed in their preferences for hobbies, and architecture was particularly favoured by boys. In total, more than 50,000 of the children and young people who responded were interested in architecture. 

The pupil and student survey is part of the Finnish model of leisure activities currently being developed. The model is headed by the Ministry of Education and Culture, and its aim is to offer every child and young person an enjoyable hobby free of charge in conjunction with their school day which increases their well-being. The first pilot of the Finnish model starts in 2021. Its target group is pupils and students in grades 1–9 and additional education. The Finnish model also includes a national hobby week for schools that aims to help everyone discover an enjoyable hobby.

The initial operating model is an annual application for state grants, but the aim is to establish the Finnish model as a permanent operating model for municipalities. The need to create a legal foundation for the model and review the state subsidy system will be considered at a later date.

Text: Eeva Astala

More information:
The Finnish model on the Ministry of Education and Culture website (link)
The 2020 pupil and student survey on the Ministry of Education and Culture website (link)