Educations and jobs at a nursing home

Age group

10-12 years

Primary CMS area

Area 5 Understanding the world

Other CMS areas

Unit Description

This learning unit gives students insight into the fact that different professional groups works in a company and that they have different educational backgrounds and different job functions, all of which contribute to the common task solution. Students get acquainted with a specific workplace.
The students become familiar with that educations and the labor market has changed over time – before and now.

The students visit a nursing home, where they meet various professional groups, hear about their work and talk to nursing home residents about their working lives and what it is like to live in someone else’s workplace.

The learning unit is developed with inspiration from vocational playmaker Peter Gravlev Bertelsen, Mariager Fjord Municipality, Denmark.

Learning outcomes

Students gain insight into 

  • a workplace in the local area
  • local job opportunities 
  • that employees in a workplace / company have different skills and tasks
  • employees of different professions work together for a common purpose
  • that educations and the labor market has changed over time

Students gain experience in talking about education and jobs.

Activity Name

Educations and jobs at a nursing home


Preparing (1 hour)
Students brainstorm what businesses / workplaces are in the local area. It is identifyed which welfare workplaces exist in the local area (e.g. the school the students attend, kindergarten, nursing home). The teacher and the students discuss why these institutions exist.

Kindergartens and schools provide opportunities for children and young people to learn and develop their life here and now, and at the same time, the institutions must create opportunities for children and young people to develop into active democratic-participating community citizens.
Nursing homes offer different levels of care or support to people, typically elderly citizens, unable to cope in their own homes. It is often a goal that residents in a nursing home have as natural a life as possible. It is the task of the staff in collaboration with the resident and the relatives to help the resident with the individual needs.

The teacher and the students talk about how various staff groups work at welfare institutions (as is also the case in other workplaces). The starting point of the discussion is the school the students attend. It is discussed which staff work here. The students discuss this two and two. Their bids are subsequently written on the board. The teacher and the students talk about that the various groups of staff have different tasks but all work together on the same task – to create a safe and developing school for the students. 

The teacher tells the students that a visit to another welfare institution is planned, namely the nursing home. Here they will investigate and gain insight into which professional groups work here and what their tasks are. The students will also talk to residents at the nursing home about how their working life was (both payed and non-paid) and what it is like to live in other people’s workplaces now. 

The teacher discusses with the students what questions they would like to ask the resident. Together, they formulate questions that are written on the board. The students bring the questions to the visit in order to support the conversation with the residents. 

The teacher talks to the students about what is important when visiting a workplace and someone else’s home.

Visit at a nursing home (4 hours + transport)
The students and the teacher visit the nursing home. Students are initially introduced to the workplace: what is the purpose of having a nursing home. What do this nursing home emphasize?
Presentation of today’s program for the students.

Below a programme is presented as an inspiration. In planning the programme it is emphasized that the students are presented for different staff groups /occupational groups and their taskes. Practice activities related to the tasks of the staff groups is integrated in the programme

It is also emphasized that the presentations of work tasks etc. to the students take place at the nursing home where everyday life unfolds (and e.g. not in an ‘auditorium’ where the students don’t get a feeling of the nursing home). The program offered will depend on the specific nursing home. The visit lasts 4 hours

Programme – Example
9:00 to 9:10:
Introduction to the workplace. The person who welcomes the students also talks about who lives at the nursing home and about her/his work.
It is mentioned that students are welcome to ask questions during the visit.

9:10 to 9:30
Guided tour of selected parts of the nursing home – what do we see here and what function do the various rooms have. The guided tour can be a part of the students walk to where they meet the next employee.

9:30 to 10:00:
A person from the nursing staff talks about his/her education and work tasks, for example also about the work tasks at night, and what is important in the work.
Students are presented for compression/support stocking and their function. They try the stocking and to put them on each other.

Walk from one place to another

The nutrition assistant/chef talks about his education and work – what is important in the work, what are the tasks. Students get a bun to eat and some to drink while listening

Walk from one place to another

Day activity center
An occupational therapist / Activity worker talks about his/her education and job.
The students participate in an activity, e.g. sitting gymnastics, reading news from the newspaper aloud to a resident, etc.

Walk from one place to another

The students see the janitor’s workshop/garage and he/she tells about the work, for example maintenance – what are the tasks. How did he/she become a janitor at this nursing home, and what is special/important/giving about being a janitor in a nursing home.

Walk from one place to another

The students meet and talk to / interviews a resident. Approximately 3 students per. resident. The students can visit the resident in his/her room/apartment or in the living room.

  • Tell about your life, including your working life (payed or non-paid work)
  •  What is it like to live in other people’s working places? 

Walk from one place to another

Rounding off
The person who welcomed the class (or another of the staff the students have met) rounds of the day. They tell the students that they hope the visit has given students greater insight into what it means to work and live in a nursing home. And mentions that students are welcome to come back with questions. 

After work (1-2 hours)
The students are placed in smaller groups (3-4 people) where they tell each other about their conversations with a nursing home resident (3-4 people in each group. The students in the group have talked to different residents).
The students tell each other: What did the person tell about his working life and about living in someone else’s workplace.
The group chose two things based on the stories they have heard to share with the class. The teacher facilitate the sharing. 

The teacher facilitates that the students discuss:

  •  What did you notice on your visit? 
  • What surprised you? 
  • Do the jobs you saw at the nursing home have anything in common? 
  • What tasks can there be in a nursing home that we have not seen? Why did we not see this taskes? 
  • Why are the different tasks at the nursing home important? 
  • What do you think is important when working in a nursing home? 
  • What do you think nursing home residents find to be important competences and personal qualities for those working in a nursing home? 
  • At what time of the day and night do the various professional groups work at the nursing home? What are the advantages and disadvantages of this, for example in relation to other part of life?
  • What do we know now that you didn’t know before?
  • Is there anything you would like to know more about? How can we help each other gain this knowledge?

Before the visit, students can be taught how to ask open questions (the teacher may draw inspiration from Karl Tomm’s question types) and active listening.
After the visit, students discuss their experiences of interviewing a person they do not know beforehand.
Before the visit, the teacher can introduce the students to the genre of writing portraits. After the visit they write a portrait of the nursing home resident they have interviewed.

The teacher can inform the parents about the purpose of the activity, which is to expand the students’s horizons in relation to educational and job opportunities and support their reflection on the contribution of different jobs to our society. The teacher can encourage parents to discuss the jobs and educational opportunities in the local area and other places the family visit.
For example, at a tourist attraction, you can discuss the job opportunities here, what the employees are doing in the various jobs and how the job is important. One can guess who worked here before the tourist attraction was completed.

Revision option
If it is not possible to visit a nursing home in the local area, the activity can be changed so that the students visit another company where they can gain insight into the work of different professional groups at the company.

Learning materials



Preparing- 1 hour 

Visit a nursing home – 4 hours + transport 

After work – 1-2 hours

Role of the Teachers

Focus on career learning – not on choice of educational programme and/or vocation
The activity is developed to support the student’s career learning, especially that they gain an expanded knowledge of the world of work and further develop their language around the world of work. Throughout the activity, the teacher must focus on supporting a curious approach to the world of work. The activity is about jointly becoming wiser on the world of work. The activity can, in conjunction with other activities during the schooling, help the students to develop a broad and solid foundation for making an educational and vocational choice over time. In order to support the student’s widening of horizon in relation to educational programmes and jobs, the activity doesn’t focus on the specific educational choices the students and their parents will make in the future. Therefore, questions and dialogues on ‘what do we now know about the world of work?’ are important. While questions such as ‘what would you like to do for a living?’ is not relevant in relation to the aim of the learning unit (Read more in Skovhus, 2016).
The insight into jobs and tasks at a nursing home also support students in recognising the importance of what people do in their job and their contribution to the common society. This supports cohesion in the society.

The teacher recruits nursing home(s) for collaboration
The teacher recruits nursing home(s) for collaboration. In the teacher’s request to the nursing home for cooperation, the teacher describes the purpose of the course – namely that the students gain initial insight into the world of work in a way that supports curiosity. It is clarified that it is not about the student making an educational choice – the visit is not about supporting the students in finding out whether they want to work in nursing homes or not.

Meeting – The teacher and the nursing home

  • Sharing expectations for the students’ visits at the nursing home. Discussion of practical details, content and preparation. The students’ learning and reflection opportunities are in focus.
  • The teacher and the nursing home representative discuss how to ensure that all staff who speak to students know that the purpose is to provide insight and expand educational and vocational horizons – career learning – and not educational choices
  • The teacher presents how the students are prepared for the visit and how the experiences are processed
  • Exchange of additional information
The teacher collaborates with the nursing home staff during the visit to make it work as well as possible.

The teacher asks questions during the visit that are relevant for the students. 

Facilitates student’s preparation and processing of the visit in order to support that students’s reflect further than they could go by themselves.


2. Managing relationships
  • I interact confidently and well with others
3. Finding work and accessing learning
  • I learn throughout life
5. Understanding the world
  • I understand how changes in society relate to my learning and work
  • I understand how learning and work change over time


The students participate in the visit and in the discussions.