Data collection & Instruments

We have used several different instruments in our data collection. Several of them we have produced by ourselves and they have a long history. The first observation instrument with the main principles and children’s orientation was applied in Turku Finland as early as 1984. The observation instrument includes an involvement scale developed by Laevers 1994 and the categories of physical activity are based on OSRAC-P (Brown et al., 2006). The categories of emotions have been developed based on the categories by Ekman (1994). The copyright of the instruments other than the observation of involvement, physical activity, and emotions belong to Jyrki Reunamo. If you are interested to use the instruments in your research, please contact Jyrki Reunamo at the University of Helsinki. Our main tools are observation, child evaluations, learning environment evaluations, leadership evaluations, and child interviews.

In addition to the instruments described above, we have used tests for reading and writing readiness, math skills, creativity, balance skills, motor skills, stress level testing (cortisol and alpha amylasis), and physical activity monitoring by Polar activity monitors. The original instruments of Observation and Child Evaluation were developed in 1984 (see Reunamo, 1986). The instruments were enhanced in 1997 (see Reunamo 2009). They were further developed with the help of the Taiwanese team (especially Hui-Chun Lee, Li-Chen Wang and Rosalind Wu, see

The original learning environment evaluation was developed in 2004 based on the City of Helsinki data (see Reunamo 2005) and enhanced during several rounds of quality evaluation with the help of the municipality participants between the years 2010-2015. This updating of the learning environment evaluation and leadership evaluation was conducted with the help of experts from Espoo, Helsinki, Hyvinkää, Hämeenlinna, Järvenpää, Kerava, Kouvola, Mäntsälä, Nurmijärvi, Sipoo, Turku and Vantaa. Mari Sillman was an important developer in updating the learning environment evaluation with the FINEEC quality indicators.

The Leadership evaluation was developed in 2014 based on the city of Helsinki data collected in 2004 (see Reunamo 2005). The evaluation was updated with the help of Marja-Liisa Akselin, Ulla Soukainen and Timo Järvensivu. In 2016 the leadership evaluation was updated to include the 2016 Finnish curriculum with the help of experts from municipalities Espoo, Helsinki, Hyvinkää, Hämeenlinna, Järvenpää, Kerava, Kouvola, Mäntsälä, Nurmijärvi, Sipoo, Turku and Vantaa. In 2019 the leadership evaluation was updated to include the FINEEC quality indicators with the help of Leena Lahtinen.

The interview tool for children’s social orientations was first developed by Jyrki Reunamo (1986, 1990, 1998). The Taiwanese team (especially Hui-Chun Lee, Li-chen Wang, Rosalind Wu,Wann-Yi Mau and Chao-Jung Lin) have participated in developing and testing the interview tool. The pictures of the interview tool have been produced by Tzung Ying Li. The key for interpreting children’s orientations was done by Jyrki Reunamo and Outi Tirkkonen in 2010. In 2014 several items were updated. Among the revisors have been Hui-Chun Lee, Teemu Nikkola and several city of Helsinki Kindergarten teachers.

The standard data collection in the observation is based on random sampling, including all activities in the class, for example, teaching, eating, play, outdoors, care and rest.