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Early childhood education in foreign language

Vaasa offers early childhood education in English for both Finnish-speaking children and children whose native language is English.

Foreign language early childhood education for Finnish-speaking children

Foreign Language Teaching in Early Childhood Education (English)

Foreign language teaching in early childhood education (English) is aimed at Finnish-speaking children aged 5-6 in Vaasa.

The aim of the teaching is to make the children familiar with the basics of English and to prepare them for the transition to a basic education in a foreign language.

Early childhood education teaching is organised at Vaasa English Playschool and the basic education is provided at Suvilahti Primary School. Vaasa English Playschool is a privately-run daycare approved by the City of Vaasa as a service provider.

English language early childhood education is applied for once a year in February. Applications for foreign language teaching submitted outside the application period or submitted to other units will not be considered.

A child can primarily apply for a place in either Swedish-language immersion education or English language early childhood education.

Selection criteria

  • The child’s place of residence is Vaasa.
  • The parents are able to arrange transportation to the daycare centre.
  • The child’s mother tongue is Finnish, or the child has good Finnish language skills (wide vocabulary).

If there are more applicants than places, then places will be allocated by drawing lots. Children left without a foreign language teaching place will be placed on a waiting list according to the draw. If places become available, they will be filled in the order of the waiting list. The waiting list is valid for one year (= the year in question).

International group for English-speaking children

Vaasa English Playschool runs an international daycare group, which is aimed at 3-6 year-olds living in families where the home language is English. The children do not need to be able to speak Finnish.

Applications to the group can be made throughout the year.

The children are selected for the group according to age, from 6-year-olds down. Siblings in the same family take precedence when applying for a place in the group. If an older sibling is already in the group, a younger sibling will have priority when applying. If there are more applicants than places, then places will be allocated by drawing lots. The children who are left without a place are put on a waiting list. The application and waiting list are valid for one year.

Pikkuponi bilingual daycare centre (Finnish-English)

Pikkuponi is a bilingual daycare centre, where both Finnish and English are spoken. Pikkuponi is a privately-run daycare centre, which has been approved by the City of Vaasa as a service provider.

An application for an early childhood education place at Pikkuponi daycare is made by filling in the form for private early childhood education. An application for a place at Pikkuponi daycare can be made throughout the year.

The goal of the daycare is to make the children familiar with the English language and to encourage them to actively use it. English is used during the whole day and the children learn to use it through songs and games during daily routines.