10 good things to know about Sweden

About Sweden; well what about it? Want to know a few Swedish essentials? Or are you looking for a list to explain Sweden to your friends abroad? Here it is; from fika to Allemansrätten and Idas sommarvisa – about Sweden

Video by Eductus.

From fika to Allemansrätten and Idas sommarvisa.

 

Practice listening to Swedish – en saga på svenska

Did you know the moon is actually made of ice cream? At least in this Swedish story about Krakel Spektakel by Lennart Hellsing; Glassmånen (the ice cream moon). Listen to this 5 minute tale to practice understanding Swedish. If you are a beginner don’t worry about understanding or not; simply listen to the rhythm of the language as well as the stress and intonation of it (the prosody). This will help you get acquainted with the Swedish language.

Practice listening to Swedish!

glass = ice cream

en måne = a moon

ett moln = a cloud

note: måndag means Monday. However in this text the author is playing with words and måndag in the story refers to “moonday” – the day of the Moon. Pronunciation is different from the day of the week “måndag”. Listen to pronunciation here.

Utlandssvenskar sökes till TV-program

Är ni utlandssvenskar? Kanske på väg att bli?

Jag fick en förfrågan om assistans från Tove Bergqvist som är med och producerar ett familjeprogram om utlandssvenskar för TV. Hon söker familjer som bor i utlandet, och som är intresserade av att deltaga. Uppropet gäller också er som är på väg att flytta utomlands. Jag bad Tove skriva ihop en kortare text, vilken följer nedan:

“Vi söker barnfamiljer som har flyttat/är på väg att flytta utomlands! Det är ett nytt familjeprogram som ska visa hur det är att dra upp sina rötter och flytta med familjen till ett annat ställe och börja om med vardag och det berömda livspusslet. Det får gärna vara något udda, kanske ett ovanligt jobb eller en spännande stad/plats, lite äventyrligt helt enkelt! Ena föräldern och barnen ska prata svenska. Stämmer det in på er eller någon ni känner? Vi tar tacksamt emot alla tips! För mer info maila till tove.bergqvist@art89.se”

Jag hoppas att programmet blir en bra balans till Svenska Hollywoodfruar och bilden många har av utlandssvensken. Som Tove skriver finns det en vardag och ett livspussel utomlands också. Dessa skall dessutom hanteras på ett annat språk och i en främmande kultur med allt vad annorlunda normer och värderingar kan innebära.

Kan det vara något för dig? 🙂

Glöm inte att dela artikeln!

Are you not practicing speaking Swedish?

Do you find it hard to practice speaking Swedish? You are not alone. Students learning Swedish does not speak Swedish outside of the classroom, says this article.

I have heard this before, and of course it is difficult learning if there are no opportunities to practice! I also hear that students don’t speak much in the classroom since there usually are pretty many students and fairly little time.

So, opportunities must be grabbed! I know; I have been living abroad myself, learning new languages and sometimes forcing myself to speak to strangers :). Last country I lived in I also had a private tutor with whom I spoke hours with each week. This made wonders to my fluency and confidence, and it still does even though it is six years ago, and I do not practice the language on a regular basis (only in my head which btw is a good tip!). But I can still speak rather effortlessly!

Go out there and practice Swedish/any language you are learning. Hire a tutor, find a language friend, make friends, go to a language café, join a local club or local language playgroup if you have kids.

Any other tips for practicing to speak?

Swedish spring sign singsong

A clear blue sky and a gentle, warming sun promised spring ahead today. Already there are signs of fresh growth in the garden. Could it be the Swedish spring? Actually I don’t think it ever stopped growing this season. It has been a mild winter and even the roses have tiny budding leaves. I just had to bring the camera out for a break in the garden today. There wasn’t really much to photograph though, so I focused on the one interesting tree so far; the willow.

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A classic, popular Swedish children’s song is “Sov du lilla videung” (Sleep you little young willow). It is about the transition between winter and spring, and the longing for warmer, brighter days. The Swedish spring is usually much awaited, but full of surprises in terms of snow and colder days and nights in between. It happens every year, and yet we are always unprepared!

vår = spring

Det Vackraste – Music in Swedish on Valentine’s Day

 

It is Valentine’s Day – alla hjärtans dag – today, and what could be more appropriate than posting a link to a beautiful song of love.

It you are learning Swedish this is a perfect song – Cecilia sings in a clear voice, fairly slow which makes it easier to follow. The link is to Spotify; if you don’t have it you can check Youtube ( I did not post a link since I could not find a version where there were no spelling mistakes …)  Be sure to use TuneWiki to see the words in writing, if you use Spotify.

Cecilia Vennersten – Det Vackraste

 

 

A Swedish Winter’s Tale – “Vintersaga” – Swedish music in Swedish

Winter is upon us, according to the calendar. Yes, we have seen some snow in the Western part of south Sweden; enough to have had the chance to enjoy some beautiful days in the sleigh slope. The ice skates and the cross-country skis are still waiting to have their fun though. But even if there is no winter in sight right now we all know it – it will come back when you least expect it. That’s Swedish winter for you.

The song “Vintersaga” (Winter´s Tale) describes a wintry Sweden – in all the senses of the word. Even if we don´t always have snow it can be dark, windy and cold. The song captures all this, and the melancholy that it leaves behind, but also the beauty and the images of an ordinary Sweden on an ordinary day. The song was written by Ted Ström in 1984. My favorite version of it is sung by Monica Törnell, and was recorded the same year. You’ll find a link to it on Spotify below.
Use available apps in Spotify to see all the words.

Enjoy the 80’s!

Swedish Thesaurus – Svensk Ordlista

Swedish thesaurus

If you are learning Swedish a dictionary is a must. Online or as a book. However I suggest that you also try to get used to a thesaurus. The thesaurus will provide “explanations” by listing a few synonyms in – in this case – Swedish. Sometimes you will find antonyms too. No translations; immersion in Swedish language; a great way to expand the vocabulary.

If you know Swedish already you need one too :). We are never fully educated.

You can use Svenska Akademiens Ordlista – the link takes you to its online Swedish thesaurus. It also comes as a book, of course. With the help of this Swedish thesaurus you also conveniently check spelling, whether it is “en” or “ett“, conjugations of verbs, inflection and declension. And here is the good news – it comes as an app. A free one. Gratis! (means “free”) Grattis! (means “congratulations”). Links at bottom of post. It is far more lighter to carry around in your pocket than the real thing. Promise.

A few pictures to illustrate how it operates.

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Svenska Akademiens Ordlista iTunes
Svenska Akademiens Ordlista Google Play

Top Notch Planning

Don’t worry if you haven’t yet mastered such delicate planning skills as presented in the photo below. There is still time to sign up for individual Swedish classes, via Skype. Just drop me an email at charlotta@globatris.se

Since my classes are individual you decide when to start and how often you would like to have them.

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Planning ahead for spring glory! Photo taken in Gothenburg Botanical Garden

Your moving abroad sidekick. Swedish lessons via Skype. Intercultural communication.