StarT – together for a good future

The main goal of StarT is to implement to schools a new interdisciplinary, collaborative StarT way of working and thinking, based on research and the practices emphasized in the newest core curriculum of Finland. StarT is an important part of the activities of LUMA Centre Finland, which is a network of Finnish universities working on to ensure the high quality of science, technology and mathematics teaching in Finland.

Through StarT we aim to encourage young people to take up an interest in science, technology and mathematics and to strengthen their science skills. StarT promotes interdisciplinary, project-based and phenomenon-based learning – it places science and technology into a context that is relevant for students and makes learning both exciting and meaningful. Welcome along, everyone!

StarT brings science, technology and mathematics closer to students

In StarT, students from early childhood education to upper secondary school learn together and from each other through collaborative working by carrying out interdisciplinary projects in groups. The projects created by children and youths in schools, kindergartens and extracurricular activity groups allow science, mathematics, and/or technology to be naturally incorporated with any subject.

StarT promotes project-based learning and active collaboration within the learning community and outside of it. This allows the students to get real-life experiences of science, technology and mathematics. StarT aims to bring for example companies, researchers, other schools, universities and organizations closer to schools and kindergartens. Learning can be exciting, meaningful, and effective all at the same time – StarT is aimed at just that!

Learning is sharing!

StarT gives schools and kindergartens new ideas and support for the implementation of project-based learning and establishes a new kind of science festival culture that focuses around collaboration. The main objective of StarT is to emphasize the role of the learning community as a collaborative learning environment. Learning communities network with each other, get visibility and recognition, and learn from each other as they see each other’s projects and ideas. The best student projects and best practices developed by educators are awarded by the StarT jury, and the grand prize is a trip to Finland. Check out the StarT awards in more detail here!

Recognition and visibility for students and educators

StarT places students in the place of experts and encourages them to carry out science, math, and technology projects through an interest-driven approach. The students’ projects and the educator’s best practices will be on display at StarT events (StarT-Days, StarT-Fests, StarT Gala) allowing them to get recognition on a local, national and international level.

StarT strives to give student projects and educational models developed by schools and kindergartens the visibility and recognition they deserve. This is why the StarT model is remarkable: in StarT both young people and teachers share their expertise and creativity with their peers, homes and educators worldwide, providing everyone participating with new ideas and inspiration. StarT encourages schools and kindergartens to develop their own models of interdisciplinary project-based learning that work best for them!

Local, national and international

The StarT model emphasizes that learning is sharing, and as such a pivotal part of StarT is bringing the project work created by young people and the educational practices of a high standard out of classrooms. There are four levels on which StarT is implemented.

Please note that if you want to participate in StarT, only thing we require from the international participants is a StarT project (read more about participating in the competition here) – the StarT-Days and StarT-Fests are recommendations. Finnish participants and participants from our partner countries will participate through the national StarT.  Read more about StarT in Finland (in finnish)

  1. Local level: StarT projects are carried out in kindergartens, primary schools, middle schools, high schools, and extracurricular activity groups. Read more about the project work here.
  2. StarT-Days: young people (and their teachers and instructors) get to share their work with their own local community, which is wider than the group that created the StarT project.
  3. StarT-Fests: regional science festivals where young people get to share their work with an even wider audience – in Finland, StarT-Fests are organized by the regional LUMA Centres. However, also a few other countries have started organizing StarT-Fests – read more about our partner countries here.
  4. International level: we share project work carried out around the world and award the best student projects and best educational practices annually at the International LUMA StarT Gala. We maintain and share a free material bank for teachers and instructors. The material bank constitutes of the internationally distinguished project work and educational practices, and it is updated annually.

Participation is free of charge, welcome along!

Read more about the programme in practice