Ambitious aims, traditional reality? Observing historical literacy in Finnish upper secondary schools
Nyckelord:HISTORICAL LITERACY, HISTORICAL THINKING, HISTORY TEACHING, OBSERVATION STUDY
This article investigates history instruction in Finnish upper secondary schools. The study revolves around the concept of historical literacy. We study what kind of texts and pedagogical activities history teachers used, and discuss to what extent the observed teaching can be characterised as disciplinary. A total of nine teachers were observed for five consecutive lessons. The data include numerical data collected using an observation instrument, as well as field notes and teacher interviews. The results reveal a teacher-led approach that emphasises substantive knowledge. Primary sources or other texts were used or analysed very rarely in the classroom. Nevertheless, in the interviews, the observed teachers indicated an understanding of what disciplinary teaching entails and considered it important to employ disciplinary practices. This disconnect indicates that the aims stipulated at the curricular level are only being partially implemented at the classroom level.