Drawings: Children of Kortesuo kindergarten
Drawings: Children of Kortesuo Kindergarten

It has been over 10 years since Jylkkäri’s last visit to the kindergarten in Kortepohja. It’s time to visit the preschool children again.

Our panel gathers around the handicrafts table and concentrates. In the morning, the children have drawn pictures of the university. What is it really?

”That’s where people study”, knows Ella, 5 years old.2

”It kind of means like going to school. The university exists, because young people are still developing. That’s where you do all kinds of things, so that you can work”, Valma, 6, elaborates.

We contemplate Helmis, 6, drawing:

”It looks like the university. There are at least squirrels and hedgehogs outside. There’s a clock there because that’s how you know when to go in. And you do tests that you have to pass.”

”I definitely know one person from the university, because my mom’s there. I don’t know what she does, during the day she works and then she goes there”, Lahja, 6, explains.


What might it mean that the university aspires for science and scholarship? Kaisa, 6, begins:

”It is science when you know some things.”

”That you get information”, Venla, 6, phrases. Ella elaborates:

”About important things. Not like for no reason.”

”With practice you can learn. But what I don’t know is what scholarship is”, Helmi adds.

Lahja and Fajr, 6, shrug: the word is certainly fiddly. The panel pauses to think for a second. Helmi grasps:

”Well. Scholarship could be something like developing a lot. Like, to be a bit more skilful in those university things.”

”Scholarship is to be together”, Eetu continues. This inspires more thoughts in Ella:

”You need friendship for that. That you get to know each other.”


And what about wisdom?

”A wise person does not do stupid things. To go too far in the water without turning and coming back – then you can drown”, Helmi defines. Valma continues:

”Is polite and beningn towards others.”

I ask Pauli, 5, who he thinks is especially wise.

”Pauli might be a bit nervous because he is totally new here”, Helmi explains. I smile at Pauli.

”I don’t know if I’m wise. I’m a really skilful builder”, Eetu contemplates.


I ask what greetings the children would like to send to the readers of this paper.

”Can I go and think under the table”, Helmi asks. I feel like laughing: a brilliant idea!

”So much fun, dark!” the children scream.

”There are no places like this at the university. It’s too bad that you can’t go under the table there when you want to”, Lahja ponders.

”Grown-ups have these manners, a rule like that”, Helmi phrases and her friends laugh.


Soon the group crawls back from under the table.

”There should be a lot of wise people there. Can’t shove or hit others”, says Hilla.

”Wouldn’t say to another person that that’s ugly if the they’re wearing some nice clothes. And can help if the other one would need help.”

”And always apologises after making a mistake”, Valma adds.

I tell the children that I find all of them wise advisors.


The children slip into their outerwear and return to their games, the journalist returns pensively to the scholarship factory. The truth has once again been heard from the mouths of the youngest.


In Finnish:

”Sivistys on sitä, että on yhdessä” (17.9.2015)