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Munkkiniemi School Headmaster: Aki HolopainenWebsite:


Munkkiniemi School (also calles MYK or Munkka) was founded on 1938. It provides its students with a modern, cosy and safe environment to study in. MYK consists of a secondary school and an upper secondary school and offers a wide selection of subjects. Traditionally MYK has emphasized sciences. Secondary school students can choose to study in a class specializing in mathematics, whereas students in upper secondary school can study advanced and extra advanced courses in mathematics, as well as take advanced and applied courses on both physics and chemistry.


We value, respect and appreciate the environment and nature at MYK. Furthermore, the principles of sustainable development are followed. There is an active group of students who innovate and carry out our environmental projects. Since 2006 MYK has Participated in the Green Flag-program. In addition, in 2010 MYK - as the first school in Finland - joined the Baltic Sea Action Group. Ptotecting the Baltic Sea is the common denominator in our co-operation with schools is the common denominator in our co-operation with schools is Denmark and Sweden.


The Science Olympiad 2019

Wednesday November 13

We all woke up in the morning waiting for our trip. We packed our last stuff and assembled at the train station. The train journey was pleasant. We had a chance to do last minute preparation for the contest.

From the train station we got on exciting little buses that took us to the school. We also got stuck in St Petersburg's traffic which we later experienced many more times. At the school we ate lunch and got a historical tour around the school. We learned that the school was founded in 1805.

After the tour we had free time after which we had an opening ceremony that was held in the assembly hall. Everyone was there, the students and the teachers from all the participating schools. The hosts started the ceremony. The choir sang the national anthems of all the participating countries, the head mistress held a speech and the traditional candles were lit.

The host families retrieved us from the school after the opening ceremony. The families were hospitable, and the home accommodation was considered positive by all. Absolutely a unique experience.

Thursday November 14th

The day of the competition. The reason why we came here. The three and a half-hour train trip and the opening ceremony of the previous day were now behind us and everyone was looking forward to the competition. We arrived at the school at half past nine which meant that we had only a half-hour to prepare for the puzzles the competition would offer. When the competition started at 10 am most of us were already getting nervous about our performances in the following three hours. And as we would soon find out, it was not without reason. The questions were hard enough so most of us had to leave at least a few questions unanswered despite the generous three hours we were given. Despite the toughness of the questions everyone fought hard until the end and even made some key realizations in the very last minutes of the competition. After the competition we had lunch and then some free time: some of us decided to get more familiar with the magnificent building complex of the school while others were keen on getting to know the city of St. Petersburg better. We returned to the school by half past three so that we would have time to gather all our belongings and finish up smaller businesses before attending the bus tour around the city. The bus left at half past four and with us were a guide and some volunteers from the school. The tour was two hours long and during that time we saw numerous beautiful attractions, such as the Winter Palace, designed by the Italian-born Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli, a statue depicting Peter the Great, the Bronze Horseman, the twenty-acre Palace Square, and the 161-year-old Saint Isaac's Cathedral. We also stopped and got a chance to walk around some of the attractions, such as an old Soviet era ship. After the tour, we - the competitors as well as the volunteers from the school - got to spend the rest of the evening at a disco, where some danced to Russian electronic music while others just conversed and got to know each other better.



The Grand Hall where the competition was held

A Soviet era ship


Friday November 15th

The last day of our trip was very exciting because of the closing ceremony. We left our lovely host families early in the morning and then at school we went to the magnificent assembly hall where the awards were given to the ones that had succeeded in the tests of physics, mathematics and chemistry. Three students in mathematics managed to get medals. We had a tea break where we had Russian food and we had a change to interact with the Swedish students who were very nice. Always the best part of the competitions is to make new friends from other countries. Then we left the school to buy some souvenirs before leaving for the train station. It was a fun trip. Furthermore, these international science competitions always add more motivation for studying sciences.



The Science Olympiad in Tallinn 2015

Team from Munkka

On Monday November the 2nd we started the day with a meeting at Katajanokka Terminal in Helsinki, Finland. During the trip to Tallinn we practiced Maths, Physics and Chemistry. In Tallinn we were greeted by two students from Gustav Adolf Gümnaasium. They took us to the school that reminded us of a castle where all the royals lived. We met the other competitors who looked just as prepared as us. We were also photographed. After that we ate a delicious lunch in the school canteen. Then it was time for the traditional opening ceremony where our voices blared with excitement. The opening ceremony consisted of different speeches, the national anthems of every participating country and a ceremonial lighting of the candles. After the ceremony we were introduced to our lovely host families and they took us to our temporary homes.

On Tuesday November the 3rd we met at school early in the morning and started to prepare for the upcoming Science Olympiad. After four hours of blood, sweat and tears (mostly sweat) the tests were done and we had a long awaited lunch break. As for some of us Finns only one Olympiad wasn't quite enough. Ten of us continued with the Finnish national physics competition. Those who weren't brave enough went for a small city tour. The day culminated with a friendship evening, complete with an impromptu Talent Show! After this unforgettable day our host families brought us home for a good night's sleep.

On Wednesday we arrived at the Gustav Adolf Grammar School at 7.45am and started to board the buses. We went to the University of Tallinn where we got a chance to experience the university life. The university itself was very innovative and modern, and the guided tour was interesting. After the visit we got on a bus which took us back to school, and where we prepared for the closing ceremony. It was fantastic, especially the singing performance by the GAG students. Four of our students were awarded medals one of which was gold (Liina Jukko Physics III) and three bronzes (Linda Hemmann Physics II, Henri Brax Mathematics II and Denis Kheinonen Mathematics I). A magnificent success for Team Munkka! Afterwards we had lunch and free time. On our free time, the boys experienced a local McDonald's speciality, kolmekoordne juustuburger. Meanwhile, the girls went shopping. At 5pm the bus came and took us to the port. It was a pleasant trip!

Nordplus 2014, Vilnus

Team from Munkka

Day 1 Our trip began late Sunday evening, when we got onboard the ship that took us to Tallinn. The actual trip only took a few hours, but we stayed on the ship for the night. We woke up early the next morning and had breakfast in a hurry to get off the ship in time. The rest of the travel would be completed by bus. The Estonian team shared the same bus with us on the exhausting nine-hour trip all the way from Tallinn to Vilnius. Although the occasional stops were few and far between, the travel went well overall.

Once we arrived to Vilnius, we right away entered the school the Olympiad was to be held in: The Vytautas Magnus Gymnasium of Vilnius. There we changed our clothes and a group photo was taken. Soon after that, we were greeted along with all the other teams by a spectacular opening ceremony. The show included numerous impressive music and dance performances, the national anthems of all the participating countries, and the lighting of six candles: each representing its own country. This magnificent ceremony certainly made us all feel welcome.


After the long and eventful day we finally met our host families. These Lithuanian families would hospitably house us throughout our visit. For now, they provided us with a place to rest and prepare for the upcoming Olympiad.


Day 2


In the morning everyone was getting ready for the big test. The students gathered at the school and got ready to take the test. The test was 4 hours of deep concentration on the subject the students were chosen to participate in.


After the test it was time for a lunch break to discuss how the test went. After that we got an opportunity to go on a sightseeing tour in Vilnius. We got to see the old town and the Catholic church. In the middle of Vilnius we saw the statue of the founder of Vilnius, Magnus Vytautas. The town was filled with Christmas ornaments and big Christmas trees. We also climbed a high hill up to the spot where the castle used to be.


Then we went to the friendship evening which was held at a hotel near the school. There were Lithuanian students and their parents who were singing folk songs and playing music following a buffet filled with different fruits and other snacks while some music was playing. There was also some time to talk with people from different countries before it was time to go back to the host parents.


It was a really pleasant afternoon with all the activities that the Lithuanians provided us. They really gave a good impression about their country and this experience might make people come back and visit their country again.


Day 3


We woke up feeling excited and a little nervous about the results. The closing ceremony started at 10 and after some beautiful Lithuanian dance performances we got to hear the results. Sadly, we didn't win any medals but we had several fourth places. A few of us did win a prize from the Human Rights Competition though. It was a USB-stick which looked like a bus.


We had a delicious lunch at the school and started our way home. The nine-hour bus ride to Tallinn was tiring but we had a lot of fun playing games and talking. Finally, from Tallinn we took a ship to Helsinki. Another 2.5 hours and we were home, tired but happy. Day 1 We got up early on Monday morning. The train left Helsinki at five o'clock so everyone had had quite a short night. It took us three and a half hours to get to St Petersburg; some of us slept in the train. We met the teacher "Ana" responsible for our group on the railway station and rode to the Second St Petersburg Gymnasium by bus. There we went for a tour around the school. We learnt a lot about the history of the school, and especially about its many names! After a great lunch in the school's canteen we changed our clothes and were ready for the opening ceremony of the Olympiad in the Assembly Hall. Before that we posed for the group photo. The opening was quite impressive. We heard a music performance and sang the Finnish national anthem. The school's choir sang amazingly well in Finnish with us! The opening was over after the lightning of the Olympiad candles. Then it was time for the host families to meet us. Many of us were a bit nervous about it but it went well and everybody got a bed to sleep after the long day - and a new Russian acquaintance!


Day 2 After we woke up, we went to the school and prepared for the upcoming exams. At 10am the tests began. The problems were difficult but we did our best. After the four-hour struggle we ate lunch and started our sightseeing tour. A bus took us around St. Petersburg to see its most remarkable monuments and buildings. After the tour we had dinner at the school. We went to a palace to see a Folklore show. In the show the actors sang and danced to traditional Russian songs. It was enjoyable and we learned about Russian culture. Our hostparents picked us up at the palace and took us to our homes. We spent some time with our families we went to bed.


Day 3 The morning started with an early wake up call in our host families. After sufficient breakfast the participants arrived to the high school from all around the city. After a long and not-so-patient waiting for the arrival of teachers the closing ceremony could finally begin. The ceremony consisted of various speeches and singing and dancing performances. However, the focus stayed ofcourse on the actual results of the science olympiad. The winners were granted a small prize and a diploma for their effort and succes in the competition. After a rather typical Russian lunch the competitors had a couple of hours of free time to spend. Some stayed at the school while some visited the Russian street scene. Unfortunately it was then the time to leave the city. Hopefully we'll come back as soon as possible!



2010 November 29


November 30 We woke up early and had a normal hotel breakfast before the important test. We were excited and had slept well.The tests were held at the University of Riga, which was a very beautiful building in the center of the city. They began at 10 o'clock and ended at 2 o'clock. After the tests, which were very difficult, we ate lunch at the school canteen. After the lunch was eaten we went shopping. We found many interesting souvenirs.In the evening we went to LIDO-center. There we had the opportunity to try the traditional Latvian cuisine. It was quite meaty but good nevertheless. We also had some time to form international contacts. After we had eaten we went to hotel and bowled, played pool and air-hockey. It was fun of course but tiring. Because of that we went to bed and slept well ;D.


December 1 We woke up at 9 o'clock and ate our awesome breakfast at the hotel. Afterwards we packed luggage and left them at the hotel. We went tothe school and had much time there. Then we had the closing ceremony.We were very proud of Leo, because he was the only student from theFinnish team who won something. But then again, it's not about winningbut playing fair game. The ceremony was tremendous and the choir sangbeautifully. After the ceremony we had a bit free time and we went outfor a coffee in order to spend our last latis. Then we headed to theairport and saw a beautiful halo of the sun on the bus.


Behalf of the Finnish team we want to thank you all and wish youwelcome to Helsinki next year.


2009 October 26 We left the school at 12.26, because Leo was late. Our ferry toward Estonia left the harbour at 2.30pm. On board we changed into our formal clothes for the opening ceremony, and the euros in our wallets were exchanged into kroons. When we arrived in Tallinn, a bus took us to the Gustav Adolf Gümnasium where we ate chicken with rise or potatos. After lunch the opening ceremony began. We heard the headmasters' speeches and some beautiful music performances from the students of Gustav Adolf Gümnasium. After the ceremony the bus took us to the hotel, where the teachers briefly prepped us for the test. It was late and everyone was kind of hungry, so we ordered some pizzas and hang around in the lobby. Transformers was on TV (with Estonian subtitles). After the movie we went to our rooms to get some rest before the test next day.


1. Vielä Helsingissä bussia odottelemassa


2. Munkkalaiset Vanhan Kaupungin kierroksella


3. "Näin se olisi pitänyt tehdä"


Tuesday October 27 In the morning we ate some breakfast at the hotel. Then the bus came to pick us up for the exams. We had four hours to do the exams and after that we had lunch at the school canteen.


Then we had a guided tour around the old town and we had some free time. We walked around the city of Tallinn and shopped.


In the evening we had a concert at Vanalinna Muusikamaja. From there we went to the water party. There were some snacks and music. We went to the sauna and chatted with students from the other countries.


Later we had a toga party with all the other competitors of the olympiad. We had a great time and we are looking forward to next years olympiad in Riga.


October 28 After a good lunch we had a lot of free time before our departure, so we decided to roam around the old town to check out some cafés or just to admire the sights.


When we felt like we were done with that we found our way back to the school to catch the bus. Since we had so much time left I made up my mind to conquer the upright piano at the hallway to have a little concert of my own. Being a school hallway, the acoustics weren't too great, but the audience I had didn't seem to mind.


Once it was time to step into the coach we bid our farewell to the Gustav Adolfi Gümnaasium and were on our way to the port. It wasn't even half an hour after the coach had dropped us at the terminal D when we received a message from the Tallinn headmaster, saying that a piece of our luggage had been swapped with one from the Lithuanian students. It turned out they were two identical bags, only difference being a flight tag on the other. What were the odds? Anyway, the luggage eventually found their correct owners, fortunately before the plane the Lithuanians were to board took off. I can't imagine the hassle it would have been if the incident had been discovered an hour later.



2008 We woke up early on Wednesday the 10th of December and flew to Vilnius on a small plane. When we arrived at Vilnius, we had to wait for the Estonians for a while. After that we went sightseeing by bus and started with a famous TV-tower of Lithuania. Up in the TV-tower there was a small restaurant and we had a little snack there. The view from the TV-tower to the city was very impressive. After that we saw several gorgeous churches. All of them were full of different kind of statues and other ornaments.


When the sightseeing tour ended, we checked ourselves in to our hotel. The hotel was very nice and we all were positively surprised. We had a few hours free time and some of us went shopping and just walking around.


Then we went to the school and had a dinner there. After that there was the opening ceremony. We didn't have as fancy clothes as everybody else, but the ceremony was fine and well arranged.


In the evening we studied a little bit and after that we relaxed and had a toga partiy in the third-graders' hotel room.


It was the dawn of the contest day in Vilnius as the students of Munkkiniemen Yhteiskoulu descended to the ground floor of the hotel to enjoy some breakfast along with the other teams and to prepare ourselves for the upcoming contests. The fact that no calculators nor chartbooks were allowed to be used in mathematics made some of us a bit nervous. That said we needed to orientate to using long division for the first time since elementary school! Pretty soon after the breakfast we made our way to the classes where the exam-like competitions were to be held. In these familiar looking rooms we were to sit for the next few hours.


After a tough competition we had a little time for a walk around Vilnius and chase after souvenirs before lunch in the school canteen. Some of us found true treasures from the marketplace, like old Soviet captain hats. For a lunch our hosts served us soup and deep fried chicken, which was excellent. After the filling lunch we were introduced to the most meaningful and of course the most beautiful historical objects in the Old Town of Vilnius. The sightseeing was held by local students. They showed the Vilnius University for us and we found out many little details about the town and it's architecture. One thing worth of knowing is that the marketplaces in the Old Town of Vilnius are actually of triangular shape, which isn't a very common design around the world.


After the sightseeing in the Old Town we had a little free time before our next program, bowling. We were taken by bus to a shopping mall where there was a big bowling alley. After a couple hours of bowling we had about an hour to wander around the mall before going back to the bus and leaving for our hotel.


Report from Lithuania by the abiturients - the third day of the trip




Friday morning at eight we all woke up in the same bed. The previous evening's toga party and Estonian students' nightly phone calls seemed like a lively dream already. The next event was the finale of the Olympics, a festive ceremony. Everybody headed to their own rooms to prepare to a luxury hotel breakfast. Breakfast, which overall was delicious, tasted even better the last morning.



After eating, all students prepared themselves for the forthcoming finale to celebrate the end of the successful Olympics. There our students received fine prizes for their fabulous performances of the previous days. After some freshing up, everyone gathered in the hotel's lower lobby, and headed for the celebration. The festivities took quite a long time. Different kinds of performances were seen, the program was full of skilled dancers, musicians, and this jubilee certainly left no one unmoved. A local choir sang the Lithuanian national hymn which sung by a multi-voice choir sounded just fantastic. After the fine performances came the awards ceremony. The spirit of fair result: no one left empty-handed, as each of us received a certificate and a fine badge in addition to the other awards.




After the closing ceremony, some of us went to investigate the center of Vilnius. Others were just resting after a wild night. After having bought the last souvenirs we walked back to the school on a road lighted by Christmas lights. After that we had to leave for the airport. We got beautiful postcards and a picture of the team from the students from the local school. The last bus trip with the Swedes went well, but fatigue all around was noticeable.


At the airport we all passed the safety inspections, after which the entire team headed straight to the Tax free. The girls were mainly trying the perfumes, as the boys still bought the latest "emergency gifts." Before boarding, we had a last common snack in the only bar of the airport. Teachers Kimmo and Mervi had still some time to have a close match on a driving simulator. The flight was on a small but surprisingly steady Baltic Air plane. Back home we thanked our fantastic fellow students of the successful trip!





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