I asked one of my Skype students to share her tips for efficient self-studying. Here's what she wrote:
- The hardest thing is finding time to study. If you drive to work or spend time on public transport, you can use that time to listen to Finnish. I started by listening to the Pimsleur lessons. They are not perfect, as they use the formal form of you and the vocabulary is geared toward business travelers, but they did help me learn some basic vocabulary such as numbers and simple statements. You have to speak out loud, so it's ideal if you're alone, but not so great if you're on a bus!
- Podcasts and CDs that often come with textbooks are also great to listen to in the car. I remember learning the days of the week by listening to a segment of a CD over and over again until I could repeat them all.
- I also listen to the Yle Uutiset selkosuomeksi podcasts. They're only 5 minutes long, and while a beginner won't understand much, it's still helpful to listen to get an ear for the language. The speech is slow and well-annunciated. A good exercise is to print out the text, read along with the podcast, and then translate all of the words you don't know.
- Schedule time each week to study Finnish, and stick to your schedule! Every Wednesday after work, I go to a coffee shop and do some studying. I also spend some time each Saturday and Sunday morning. A little time each day would be ideal, but that isn't always possible.
- "Read" Finnish newspapers and magazines. Advertisements, such as for the K-market and Stockmann, are the best because they have pictures of all of the items.
- Watch TV shows or movies in English with Finnish subtitles.
- Watch Finnish TV shows with the Finnish subtitles on. Don't skip the commercials! Just like advertisements, they usually show what they are talking about and they don't have a lot of text.
- Make flashcards or use a website such as Quizlet to practice vocabulary.
- Use apps on your phone to study during wasted time your day, such as when waiting for the bus or in line at the grocery store. Genko Cards and Learn Finnish are two that I like.
Haluaisitko sinä lisätä jotain? - Would you like to add something? :)