It is fun to learn a language. However repeating vocabulary is not always all that fun. I love to come up with creative ways to inspire learning Swedish (or any language). Today I instructed my young students to keep a word cloud application open during our Skype lesson in Swedish. We spoke about toys and playing, and tried to come up with all possible nouns for toys (we also used a toy store catalogue for the visual). The two students took turns to type the words in Swedish, making sure spelling was correct. Typing/writing helps in remembering and learning the words. After the lesson they will print the cloud in a few copies and go through all the words again; looking up any word they cannot remember the meaning of. They will also circle words that take “en” on one sheet, and “ett”-words on another. One copy goes up on the wall as today’s achievement!
Remember that repeating is key.
We used Tagxedo for today’s “Learn words in Swedish”. I have used a few other similar applications as well. If you search for “word cloud” you will get suggestions enough!
We had to leave out all the words with the Swedish letters ÅÄÖ; they were not supported by this application.
Here they are:
Want to read something besides Aftonbladet? I found a link to Swedish Newspapers on line. “Click” to find your favorite.
The webpage does not only list Swedish newspapers but newspapers worldwide.
Reading the news does not only help improving your language but also gives you a sense of belonging; whether you are new to Sweden, a Swede living abroad or just interested in Sweden. You know what is going on and can join the conversations.
Personally I have a thing for local news, no matter which country I live in. It is also an excellent way to stay updated on what is going on on the cultural scene – museums, exhibitions, theaters, markets and other happenings in your area.
Have you found a favorite newspaper?
Valborg (Walpurgis) is celebrated throughout Sweden yet in varying forms. To me Valborg is a celebration of springtime. I also associate it with University students; Chalmers, Lund, Uppsala and their own special festivities. Many a choir is welcoming the spring by singing spring songs. In many parts of Sweden large bonfires play a big role on Valborgsmässoafton (Walpurgis Night).
Read more about Valborg (Walpurgis) and the Swedish traditions here – in Swedish
Watch and listen to Håkan Hellström’s beautiful song Valborg.
A Happy Easter to all my customers, followers and friends! Let there be sun, food, company, love and chocolate!
And a Happy weekend if you do not celebrate Easter.
As usual you can print this mini poster – put it in a small frame on the counter, or put it up on the refrigerator door to learn or keep Swedish vocabulary alive! Just right click on the picture. Share or leave a comment if the print made you happy!
Glad påsk! Free print in Swedish.
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.
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.
Being bilingual; surely we all know it has its major advantages but here are a few more if you need backup!
Here’s a fun infographic, courtesy of Bilingual Monkeys…
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 firstname.lastname@example.org”
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!
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!
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.
Svenska Akademiens Ordlista iTunes
Svenska Akademiens Ordlista Google Play