I missed my Finnish lesson on Friday because M and I went on a weekend away to Kuopio so this week’s blog post will be about learning Finnish informally, that is from everyday life in Finland, the way I have learnt most of what I know! Aside from the UEF Finnish classes and Kansalaisopisto’s Suomi 1.2 course (both part time only 1.5-3 hrs/week) I have not studied Finnish formally and I have never sat down and worked my way through a textbook on my own at home. Perhaps I *should* do that but I don’t think that is how I learn best. I feel (eli minun mielstäni) I learn best by doing: by trying to speak, write, understand Finnish either in Suggestopidian method lessons or in everyday life.
Here are (some of) my everyday learning situations from this weekend:
Filling out this guest satisfaction form (tekstin ymmärtäminen)
- asked for tickets at a museum,
- checked on our table reservation at the hotel reception,
- got us seated at the restaurant,
- ordered food and drink.
To be honest these are situations (tilanteita) that I have dealt with in Finnish quite a few times before but it is good to take the chance to practice them as they could easily be the kind of situations we are faced with in the puhuminen part of the test. In the test it will be more difficult as I won’t be face-to-face with the other person, they will just be a recorded voice, so I can’t use gestures or pointing to get what I want!
Over breakfast I also read a newspaper article about the talvisota (Winter War) which I have an interest in. We get the Karjalainen newspaper every day at home and I try to read something in it every day but it helps if the topic is something which interests me! This is another way for me to practice tekstin ymmärtäminen. I also usually browse websites in Finnish (today its Bootz.com) and YLE.fi for news headlines in Finnish (that’s often where my word of the day comes from)
On the journey to Kuopio we listened to YLE Puhe radio station which was broadcasting commentary from a ski race. I found this quite hard to follow as the commentator spoke very fast and also my concentration wandered but I got the gist I think. I was joking with M that it would be quite awful if the puheen ymmärtäminen was as fast-paced as that commentary.
I also watch quite a lot of TV in Finnish. Another way , aside from the radio, of passive learning. I’m not sure how effective it is. On Saturday night we watched Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu. I jumped up and down on the bed when PKN won! They rock!
UMK15 // Finaali – Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät – Kuva: Tiia Santavirta/YLE