Here's my summer challenge: I will find time to study languages! Most of my students are struggling with the challenge of studying Finnish while working, taking care of children, having a social life, and life in general. I want to know what it is like to try to squeeze in an hour or two (or half) every day and focus on studying a language. I'm not even trying to get very far, but I want to see how it actually works if I just decide that I'll find the time. What do I have to change in my everyday life to get more time? What is the most effective way of learning, and what is fun? Since my students can be from anywhere, I am equally interested in any of the thousands of languages in the world.
Each week I will focus on a different language, and I will update this post as the summer passes. If you want to follow my time management project, bookmark this page and leave your comment with great ideas and study tips! Also, I want to know how my students feel when they're studying a language via Skype. If you are interested in exchanging a 30-minute Finnish lesson to a 30-minute lesson in your mother tongue, let me know, and I'll add your language to my my study plan. Any human language will do.
- Mitä kieliä mun kannattaisi opiskella? - Which languages should I study?
- Kuka haluaisi auttaa mua? - Who would like to help me?
- Oletko nähnyt tätä videota? - Have you seen this video?
I'll alternate between languages that are brand new to me, and languages that I'm already somewhat familiar with. So far I have these languages on my list:
- Kiina - Chinese (June 1 - 7)
- Venäjä - Russian (June 8 - 14)
How I studied Chinese and Russian
July 12 UPDATE: I totally failed my summer challenge! :)
It was interesting to study Turkish via Skype and study Turkish language websites. Then came the Spanish week, I was busy, and the only Spanish thing I did was ordering los nachos in a Mexican bar in Tampere. Then I started teaching at an intensive Finnish course and realized that my summer challenge was doomed to failure. However, I've continued to study Russian with a lovely Russian lady, and I've realized how important it is to have someone nice with whom you can actually use the language. Also, I'm going back to my old school in August, and since half of my students are immigrants, I will start the project over by getting familiar with their mother tongues.