The Tehtaanmäki school in Kouvola, Finland was designed by the world-renowned architect and designer Alvar Aalto in 1939. A new use for the building is currently sought as school operations will end in Tehtaanmäki in 2024 with the reorganization of school network in Kouvola.

What will be the future of Tehtaanmäki school, a building designed for children as a learning environment by Aalto? Is the future use in architecture and design education? How can the methods of architecture and design education be utilized in learning? The webinar is part of a three-part event Tehdes – Tehtaanmäki Design, which explores these themes as well as the school building itself. The part “Building as an Educator” will be arranged in English and it explores engaging learning environments and participatory design. Other events are in Finnish.

The Tehdes event includes a webinar and workshop for teachers, educators, mentors, developers and others interested in the topic. For children, the program includes a weekend camp at the Youth Center Anjala. The event is organised in co-operation with the City of Kouvola, the University of South-East Finland University of Applied Sciences, and the Anjala Youth Center.

Tehdes aims at increasing awareness about architecture and design education and pedagogy, as well as the opportunities offered by the building itself, and pilots related activities with potential user group. At the same time, new types of operational models around the educational theme are explored and new users and networks are sought. The event will be applied to be an official part of Kouvola’s Aalto Week program. Partners providing pedagogical content and expert presentations are e.g. Finnish Society for Design Education and School of Architecture Arkki.

Tehdes is part of finding a new use for the Tehtaanmäki school to replace the school activities that will end in the next few years. In a preliminary study commissioned by the city of Kouvola (Southeast Finland University of Applied Sciences 2020), one of the possible directions for further development was educational activities related to architecture and design. Educational and teaching activities would fit perfectly to the school designed for children’s scale and educational use. Architecture and design education develops e.g. creativity, problem-solving skills, and environmental literacy – all important future skills!



The webinar on 17th of August 2021 is aimed at teachers, educators, supervisors, developers, and others interested in the topic. The event illustrates the methods of architecture and design education. The webinar’s international section on the theme “Building as an Educator”. Schedules, speakers and the program will be specified during the summer.

Building as an Educator 17th of August from 3 to 5 pm (Finnish time, = CET + 1 hrs, UTC + 3)

Read more from the event page.



Tehdes- workshop autumn 2021 – will be confirmed later

The workshop is a continuation of the webinar. The workshop will further develop the re-use of the school from the perspective of architecture and design education. The work will be done in conjunction with potential future users and stakeholders. Everyone who wants to participate in the development work and get acquainted with architecture and design education, and participatory methods is welcome to attend the workshop. The contents will be specified later. Workshop is planned to be arranged in Finnish, but we speak English as well and everyone is welcomed to participate!


More information

Laura Lehtinen
044 702 8451

Anu Vainio
044 702 8724

Sara Ojaniemi
050 911 8891

Projektin tietosuojailmoitus


Also of interest

Alvar Aalto Foundation

The Alvar Aalto Foundation maintains the material and intellectual legacy of the world-famous architect and designer Alvar Aalto, and acts to make his work and thinking more widely known.


One of the most famous Finnish designers, Alvar Aalto, has left his mark in Kouvola.


The foaming Ankkapurha rapids situated in the village of Inkeroinen have been a power source for sawmills and mills for hundreds of years.

Arkki - School of Creative Education for children and youth

Arkki is a School of Creative Education for children and youth. In its field, Arkki is globally one of a kind: no other institute in the world offers as wide a curriculum in architecture education for children and young people.

SuoMu – the Finnish Association of Design Learning

Design education in both the primary and advanced level highlights the prevalence of design in all its aspects of our everyday life and makes the processes of design itself visible.


Archinfo Finland serves as a specialist in architecture education for children and young people


1 April 2021 – 31 October 2021

Project partners

Lead partner: In cooperation: City of Kouvola, South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences (Xamk), Youth centre Anjala

Focus areas: Digital economy
Xamk Research Units: Creative Industries


Total budget: € 19 000

Financiers and main source of funding: Kymin 100-vuotissäätiö