Craft education in sustaining and developing craft traditions
Reflections from Finnish craft teacher education
In 2013, the UNESCO convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage was ratified by Finland, and its implementation has continued since. During this process, the discussions on the role of craft tradition have concerned the specific features of Finnish craft culture. One recognised aspect is the role of craft education in Finnish basic education. This article discusses the role of craft education in sustaining and developing textile craft traditions from the perspective of craft teacher education. The student teachers' portfolios from two courses were examined to determine how students applied traditional crafts and craft techniques in individual work and in teaching practices. The findings suggest that the way the students applied crafts traditions was often related to their own motivation, experiences, and ideation. Some of the topics in these two courses guided them to apply craft traditions but often it was their own choice to consider traditional aspect. Following the guidelines of the Finnish Curriculum for Basic Education, Finnish craft teacher education does not particularly focus on craft traditions. Taking the targets of safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage seriously, more effort is required when educating future teachers about craft traditions and the ways to sustain and develop them further.
Keywords: textile craft, craft education, teacher education, intangible cultural heritage, tradition, sustainability
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