7. International Küçük Eller / Small Hands and Ütopya Schools High Quality Education Congress

08 Kasım 2019

ABOUT Educational Congress

Hello dearest Mums, Dads and all professionals that enrich and touch our children's lives,

As you know, life has never been easy for people who desire and strive to live a meaningful life.

We now have to look at the lives of children in the 21st century as future educators, parents, law makers, architects, doctors, entrepreneurs, and artists. We are responsible for the outcome of their lives. Their lives today, their lives as they grow, and their lives as they reach the future.

We must act and do everything necessary to help them succeed, while also ensuring that their lives are full of joy, curiosity, deep emotions, and passion for knowledge. It is our greatest responsibility and duty in life to raise them as fully rounded, confident and loving people. This duty is not a choice, it is a must.

As adults, we must show our children how to respect themselves and the world by first showing them how we respect ourselves and one another. There is a famous proverb that goes, "It takes a village to raise a child." As we can see now, there is a terrible lack of the "village" in modern societies, and to raise the type of children we envision for the future, it takes even more than a village. The children of today live in a global community, and that is what is needed to educate and support them; a world of caring, involved and communicative adults.

It is our pleasure to announce that on the 8th, 9th, 10th of this November 2019, we will be bringing a global community to you for this very purpose. We would like to invite you to our 7th International Small Hands / Küçük Eller and Utopia/Ütopya Congress.

During the Congress, we will have great educators and professionals from Turkey, as well as England, Finland, and Malta, who will be coming as guest speakers. There will also be presenters from Turkey, England, Denmark and Japan who are educators at Ütopya School. In their each unique way, they have all dedicated their lives to the children not only in their communities, but to the children of the global community.

The children of today, the adults of tomorrow, deserve the best of the best. It would be our honor to have you meet with us for the Congress, so that we may all brush up on our skills, and learn new ways of interacting and educating.

It is our wish that we may find new ways to make children more independent for the future, prepared to be the best mothers, fathers and professionals one day. We have a very big responsibility in our hands, let's work together to achieve it.

Lots of love,
Leman Çetin


Prof. Dr. Tanju Gürkan Turkey, Türkiye
Penny Tassoni England, İngiltere
Prof. Kari Uusikylä Helsinki Üniversity Finland, Finlandiya
Dr. Martti Hellström Helsinki Üniversity Finland, Finlandiya
Jukka Somerharju Finland, Finlandiya
Peter Buttigieg Malta
Annabel Said Malta
Edward Said Malta

Hannah Elisabeth Alongi Amerika Birleşik Devletleri
Kiyoe Kurokawa Japan, Japonya
Sean Paul England, İngiltere
Joergen Olesen Denmark, Danimarka
Leman Çetin Turkey, Türkiye
Efe Urgunlu Turkey, Türkiye
Nalan Fernandez Turkey, Türkiye
Ece Ceylan Baba Turkey, Türkiye
Yara Olcay Brazil, Brezilya

Jukka Somerharju

Master of Education, Freinet-pedagogy, trainer and teacher, Finland

Jukka Somerharju, Master of Education, has almost finished his studies at the doctoral program at the University of Helsinki, Freinet - pedagog. Jukka has worked as a teacher for 40 years in the cities of Helsinki and Hyvinkää. In 1985, Jukka founded a Living School, a Freinet pedagogue organisation. Thiswas his first as chairman. At that time he travelled in many European countries visiting different children centred schools. He also lectured in different universities in Finland about freinet-pedagogue. In 1990, The Living school organisation arranged a ten days RIDEFF, a meeting for Freinet teachers from all over the world in Pohja, Finland.

Jukka was a member of the National Board of Education which tried to find ways to integrate the national curriculum 30 years ago. From 1992-1993 Jukka was in Berlin in the School Die Stadt als Schule researching ways to help those students, who did not come to School at all and did not complete their Schooling or pass. From 1993-1997 he worked as a researcher and planned and implemented with the help of Mannerheim Leaque a different model to study secondary school called ‘My career program’. Today JOPO-classes are using these same methods in hundreds of Finnish schools.

Jukka has produced and directed many pedagogical programs for the Finnish televisIon company TV 1 and for the national board of education. He has produced also several pedagogical multimedia programs. He has been an educational trainer for primary and secondary school teachers. In his freetime Jukka is also a songwriter and he has recorded three songs.

Dr. Martti Hellström

Doctor of Education, Helsinki Üniversity, Finland

Dr. Martii Hellström graduated in 1974 from the Gymnasium of Helsingin II lyseo. He gained a PHD in 2004 from the University of Helsinki in which he wrote his dissertation on ” The way of change, and the implementation and success of pedagogical development projects at the experimental schools of the Aquarium-project 1995 – 1998” He became a Class teacher from 1977 at the University of Helsinki. He is 64 years old with a doctor of Education (PhD 2004), and a lecturer in the University of Helsinki and ex-principal of Aurora Elementary School in Espoo.He has worked as a trainer of newclassroom teachers since 1982 andtrainer of new principals since 1991.

He has written several schoolbooksfor Finnish elementary schoolteachers. Currently he is a facilitatorof the curriculum reform (2016) anda facilitator in Finland for aninternational reform project called ‘New Pedagogics for Deep Learning’led by Dr. Michael Fullan.

Kari Uusikyla

Professor Emeritus of Education, University of Helsinki, Finland

Kari Uusikyla graduated from the University of Helsinki, in 1977 with a PHD. Her research interests primarily are on teaching and teacher education, gifted education and creativity Kari has worked as an elementary teacher from 1967 -1973, from 1973 – 1977 she became a lecturer for the department of teacher education in the university of Helsinki. From here she continued her career onto becoming a professor In the same department of education and later moved onto the university of Joensuu during the years 1986 – 1988.
She was the Professor of Teacher Education, University of Tampere from 1988 - 1997. She has been a professor at many universities across Finland and spent time abroad in the USA at the university of Georgia as a visiting scholar. She is a member of The Finnish Academy of Science and Letters. She has won Prizes for her work In The State of Finland 2006, and The Finnish Cultural Foundation 2008. She has won awards for her published books on the fields of education, teaching, giftedness and creativity.
She has helped with developing and defending Finnish comprehensive-school (PISA)

Edward Said

Mayor of Nadur, Malta

Edward was born on the 29th of October 1987. He worked as an analyst with the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) - banking regulation sector. Edward studied in Gozo up to post-secondary level after which he went on to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce from the University of Malta (First Class Honours). He started his career with Banif Bank (Malta) plc as a Relationship Officer, and then as a Lecturer in Financial Services for three years at the Malta College for Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST).
Throughout this time, he also continued studying and obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Vocational Education and Training (PGC-VET) as well as successfully completing a Masters degree in Finance from the University of London. Edward has held several organisational posts including, President of the Malta National Youth Council, aswell as in political and sports associations, and is a member of different organisations.
He takes an active part in the social life and activities held in Nadur and also volunteers as a certified coach within the Nadur Youngsters football nursery, bringing together his love for football and voluntary work.

Edward was elected as Mayor of the locality of Nadur on his first candidature back in 2015, and again in 2019. He is married to Claire Said, and they have a daughter named Kate.

Annabel Said

Facilitator, Consultant

Annabel Said was born in November 1983. After finishing off compulsory schooling, she attended the University of Malta where she read a course in 'Facilitating Inclusive Education' and obtained her Diploma in 2005. Ever since she has been working as a 'Learning Support Educator' (Facilitator) in various mainstream primary and secondary schools across the Maltese islands.

At present, she works in a state primary school, where aside from supporting students in managing their learning and behaviour, she seeks to promote and enhance the students' literacy skills and wellbeing, through the various school committees that she forms part of. Annabel is currently reading a Masters Degree in Education (MEd) in the field of Social Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties (SEBD) at the University of Birmingham. She is married to Peter Said and they have two children.

Joergen Olesen


Joergen was born in Denmark in 1971. He grew up in the country side and learned all the virtues required to cope with everyday life. In this way, he also learned how “what you learned in school, can be used in everyday life.” He got the opportunity to teach through his job as an IT consultant. Here he could combine what he learned and experienced with teaching in a rewarding way. He has taught children and adolescents diagnosed with ADHD, dyslexia etc.
In his spare time he trained youngsters at Handball, where the combination of theory and practice is an important factor
In 2016, he met his future wife from Turkey. In 2018 they married and decided to start their Journey in Turkey. After getting experience in the Turkish education system, the destiny led him to Utopya, where he contributes with his ideas about combined thoughts with action, theory to practice and showing different methods to reach the target – happy and well educated youngsters.

Penny Tassoni

Penny Tassoni is a leading author and trainer on childcare and early years development. She has written over 20 books, including the best-selling Planning Play and the Early Years.
Her books are known to anyone who has studied child development. She is currently president at the Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years (PACEY), which represents over 35,000 childminders, nannies and nursery workers across England. In 2018, Penny was given an MBE (a member of the Order of the British Empire) by the Queen as recognition of her work in early years education.

Leman Çetin

The founder of International Small Hands Academy and Utopya Primary and Secondary School

Leman is the founder of International Small Hands Academy and Utopya Primary and Secondary School in Istanbul, Turkey. She is also a mother of 2 children. She has been in the educational field since 1980. She has worked for 13 years as an EFL teacher, working 7 years at the state schools and 5 years in the private schools.

In between those years she lived in England, and attended the Cambridge University Local Examination Syndicate.

Leman Found that since working the children in Bingöl, Turkey during her years as a teacher and working in education at Cambridge University Local Examination Syndicate that these important times in her career changed her perspective on education.

Since then she has been researching, and implementing her findings and sharing with others.

One of the reasons Leman started the International Congress in High Quality Education in 2002 at Small Hands, and then on from 2007 Small Hands and Utopya. She wanted to give the opportunity to educators and parents ‘What is happening in children’s and teenagers lives, and how can we educate them by different learning methodologies and pedagogies?’.

Prof. Dr. Tanju Gürkan

Proffessor on Early Childhood Educator

Gürkan graduated from Ankara University, Department of Psychological Services in Education and Educational Administration, Inspection and Planning in 1970. In 1972, he completed his master's degree in Psychological Services. In 1981, he completed his Ph.D. program in Curriculum and Instruction. He has worked for M.E.B and from 1973-1976, he worked as a branch chief and program writer at the Radio Branch of Film-Radio and Television Education Center.

He has volunteered at the Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Children in Need of Special Education in Columbia, Missouri. In 1978, he started to work as an assistant at Ankara University, Department of Curriculum and Instruction.

In 1985, he became an assistant professor. In 1993 he became a professor. He was the Deputy Dean at the Faculty of Educational Sciences at Ankara University, Head of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, and Deputy Director at the Institute of Educational Sciences. In 2008, he voluntarily retired from his position at the Faculty of Educational Sciences at Ankara University.

Between 2008 and 2013, he served as Dean at Girne American University. Between 2011 and 2013, he served as a faculty member at Cyprus University. From 2014 to 2018, he has been at TRNC Lefke European University, Department of Preschool Teaching as head of department. He has studied in various fields of educational sciences including Program development, Preschool education, Preschool Education Programs, Primary Education Programs, Teacher Training, Teaching Principles and Methods. He has supervised numerous MS and PhD theses. He is married and has two children.

Peter Buttigieg

Educator, Consultant

Peter started his career in education by gaining his B.A in Maltese classical culture and civilisation in 1977. From here he went onto obtaining his post graduate in 1978 in teaching. He completed his diploma in school counselling from the University of Malta and went onto placement within the department of psychology. He then completed on project management within the European union during 2006. He has worked as a facilitator helping schools in Malta and abroad to form a fully inclusive education system where no one is discriminated against and opportunities are available for all children regardless of their culture, background and ability to learn. In 2003, he worked on the Leonardo project on The European dimension of guidance and counselling.

This isn’t his first time joining us at congress, In 2004 Peter delivered his paper on ‘The teacher as a facilitator’ to educators from all over Europe. He has worked on various educational projects throughout the European union. He is a keen Football fan and has been on the board of Gozo football association as a council member and later President of the Nadur youngster’s team. He has published many papers on Maltese culture and lives in Nadur, Malta with his wife Ines, who is also an educator.

Kiyoe Kurokawa

Early Childhood, Soroban and Japanese as a foreign Language Teacher.

Kiyoe Kurokawa has been living in Turkey since 1995 after she had worked many years at Kurokawa Kindergarten and Soroban School which belongs to her family. Her husband is Turkish. She has a son. When she arrived Turkey, she joined Küçük Eller/ Small Hands 24 years ago. And she started working at Utopya which is the same establishment of Small Hands. So, she has been making a big difference in Small Hands” and Utopya students.

At Utopya she has been helping children Soroban which is Japanese Math System, Abaküs, Origami and Rthymic lessons. She also introduces Japanese culture to children. She takes Utopya children and teenagers to Japan to support them life skills, learning, and looking at life from different perspectives.

Sean Paul

EFL teacher

Sean grew up in a large town within the London area. Following his two passions, Health and Education, He studied as a health educator. He established his own educational business delivering health education to many businesses, government bodies and schools. He later studied education at Kingston University and became an educator and began his lifelong learning journey in language education.

Sean later moved to Turkey in 2012 where he began his English teaching career with a passion to provide lifelong and meaningful education. He was dissatisfied with the many schools he worked at until he discovered Utopya School which shares his vision. At Utopya, he feels that he is able to develop a meaningful and lifelong learning curriculum.

Education Congress - Programme

Friday 8th November

English – Turkish translation
8.15 - 8.50
Registration and refreshments

9.00 - 9.40

Leman Cetin,
Small Hands & Utopya Director

9.45 – 10.30
Prof. Tanju Gürkan – Turkey

Being a teacher in the 21st century
21. yüzyılın öğretmeni olmak

10.30 – 10.45

11.00 – 12.30
Penny Tassoni – United Kingdom

How to be a creative teacher
Yaratıcı bir öğretmen olmak

12.30 – 13.00

13.10 – 14.40
Dr. Martii Hellstrom – Finland

Diamonds of the Finnish pedagogy
Finlandiya Eğitimi’nin pırlantaları
14.45 – 15.20
Joergen Olesen – Denmark

Education outside of the classroom
Sınıf dısında eğitim

15.20 – 15.40

15.45 – 16.45
Peter Buttigieg – Malta

The teacher as a facilitator and classroom management
Facilitator olarak öğretmenin rolü ve sınıf yönetimi

Saturday 9th November

English – Turkish translation
8.20 - 8.50
Registration and refreshments

9.00 – 10.30
Kari Uusikyla – Finland
What is good teaching and bad teaching?
Reasons for Finnish Pisa success
İyi öğretim ve kötü öğretim?
Finlandiya Pisa basarısının nedenleri

10.30 – 10.50

11.00 – 12.15
Annabel Said – Malta

Differentiation in the classroom
Bireysel Farklılıklar için Eğitim

12.20 – 12.50

13.00 – 13.45
Edward Said - Malta

How municipilaties can help children’s life, learning?
Çocukların yaşamına ve öğrenmelerine belediyeler nasıl katkı sağlayabilir

13.45 – 15.45
Jukka Somerharju – Finland

Freinet pedagogy as a great way of learning
Ögrenim yöntemi olarak Freinet Pedagoji

15.50 – 16.10

16.15 – 17.00
Sean Paul – United Kingdom

Modern students, Modern skills
Modern öğrenciler, modern beceriler

Sunday 10th November

English – Turkish translation
8.20 - 8.50
Registration and refreshments

9.00 - 9.40

Leman Cetin, Small Hands & Utopya Director
9.45 – 11.00
Kari Uusikyla – Finland

How parents guide children towards valuable educational goals
Aileler çocuklarına önemli eğitim hedefleri açısından nasıl rehberlik edebilir?

11.00– 11.20

11.30 – 12.45
Penny Tassoni – United Kingdom

Why books and music matter in family life?
Neden kitaplar ve music aile yaşamında fark yaratır?

12.50 – 13.20

13.30 – 14.00
Prof. Tanju Gürkan – Turkey

Challenges that parents facing in the 21st century and suggestions for solutions.
21. yüzyılda çocuk yetiştirmede ebeveynleri bekleyen sorunlar ve çözüm önerileri
14.05 – 15.05
Dr. Martii Hellström – Finland

The pedagogical role of the parents in Finland
Finlandiya’da ailelerin pedagojik rolleri

15.05 – 15.25

15.30 – 16.00
Kiyoe Kurokawa – Japan

Manners in Education
Terbiye/ Görgü Eğitimi

16.05 – 17.00

Scholl Architecture in the 21st C.
21. yy Okul Mimarisi
17.00 – 17.10
Jukka Somerhaju &
Kiyoe Kurokawa Song and Dance
Dans ve Şarkı