The Educational and Cultural Services of City of Oulu offer several contents for supporting the educational services of teaching professionals. These contents are called the EDUpack -products.

”We offer both theoretic and practical educational content from various perspectives. With an emphasis on the training of professionals Oulu has a great reputation in teaching entrepreneurship, early language teaching, and multidisciplinary learning units”, tells coordinator Eija Ruohomäki responsible for the educational content exports.

The success of Finland in international school comparisons works as a solid base for educational tourism content. The Educational and Cultural services of Oulu produce basic level operations and services for early, basic and upper-secondary education and adult education. The materials and mediums developed in Oulu have been proven successful and the city can offer pedagogic contents for different operators’ coordinated educational visits and trainings. Other service providers in the area offer  accommodation and leisure activities meanwhile the City of Oulu is to gather and offer the educational packages.

”There are many great service providers in the area and good networks for cooperation. The program and timetable of the educational visits allow other activities such as nature retreats, to be combined with the visit. Therefore, the visitors can add some much-needed leisure time to their stay amongst all of the training”, Ruohomäki states.

Practical and individually customized educational content

”The educational content can be customized widely per trainee, from educator of toddlers to higher degree institution teachers. We can also arrange visits to various educational sector organizations during the visit”, Ruohomäki says.

The EDUpacks vary from one to three hour sessions and can be customized with different themes and combined with each other. The EDUpacks are designed based on feedback gathered from previous visitors and specialties of Oulu Region. Themes can be for instance early learning approaches, sustainability, multidisciplinary knowledge, phenomenal learning or technology-oriented pedagogics.

”According to feedback, visitors have been happy with the fact that the contents are practical and have straight forward connections to one’s own working environment. They have not been implemented too clinically. Instead, the professionals are telling real examples about school- and early education world. Discussion times have been emphasized in the planning of the timetable.”

Most visitors come from Japan and China, yet many European education professionals also visit Oulu Region frequently. The visitors have the possibility to present their own culture in the visiting locations. Schools and kindergartens have had tea ceremonies and origami workshops. The visitors have been grateful for the friendliness and positive attitudes of the locals. Especially good feedback has come from the pupils’ active participation during the visits and the fact that visitors have been able to experience the normal daily early education and school life during their visit.