In addition to the general primary classes we also have a bilingual track for grades 1-9. Our goal is functional bilingualism in English and Finnish. The English language is a natural tool that is used during the lessons and in everyday activities. The teacher is the model for the language, and always uses English with her/his class. Multifunctional books and learning tools are used to support learning. The bilingual education follows the Finnish comprehensive school curriculum and English is also taught as a subject starting in the first grade.
In 1st and 2nd grades, approximately 80 % of the lessons are taught in English, and 20 % in Finnish. In 3rd and 4th grades, the amount of Finnish language lessons increases to around 40% Finnish and 60% English. In 5th and 6th grades and lower elementary classes (7th, 8th and 9th) the languages are about 50% Finnish and 50% English. The amount of the subjects taught in English or Finnish may vary.
Functional bilingualism relies on strong command of the pupil’s mother tongue. Good mother tongue skills make the learning of other languages easier. The role of the guardians is important in maintaining a rich language atmosphere at home (reading and conversations), as well as helping with homework.