OPEART: Music Theatre Productions Within Teacher Education: Enhancing Communal Engaged Learning

  • Antti Juvonen
  • Susan O’Neill
  • Pekka Räihä
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Business, Arts and Humanities book series (PSBAH)


The Finnish school produces good results; however, reports by teachers and students suggest a lack of enjoyment in schools with an atmosphere described as unapproachable. This atmosphere has resulted in school enjoyment problems in Finnish schools. To implement changes in schools, it is necessary to address changes in teacher education. We describe an innovative teacher education program that provides opportunities for enhancing communal engaged learning. The program includes music theatre as a basic element and focuses on expression, cooperative learning and experiential learning. The program is called OpeArt, which started in Savonlinna, Finland, in 2014. In this program, students encounter elements supporting their growth as teachers in and through theatre/drama and expressive processes and elements. The program contributes to the development of personality, creativity, courage, self-expression, collaboration and project execution. The basic elements of the OpeArt program are phenomenon based, with project-, cooperative- and inquiry-based learning. Students are encouraged to expand outside their comfort zones and explore their limits and possibilities by experiencing new personal and artistic horizons.


Teacher education OpeArt Expression education Music theatre Communal engaged learning 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Eastern FinlandSavonlinnaFinland
  2. 2.Faculty of EducationSimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  3. 3.School of EducationUniversity of TampereTampereFinland

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