Children learning Finnish foreign language in school

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Rosamunda
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Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 12:07 am

Children learning Finnish foreign language in school

Post by Rosamunda » Fri Jan 23, 2004 2:50 pm

My three kids are in primary school and are taking the mandatory 4-6 hours of Finnish a week as part of their regular schooling curriculum. As they are not Finnish they are receiving Finnish foreign language (their other subjects are taught in English).

My problem is they just don't seem to be making much progress (after 18 months of 4-6 hours a week) and I wondered if any other . members had a similar experience.

Their teacher doesn't actually speak a foreign language fluently herself and has probably not been specifically trained in foreign language teaching (she used to teach Finnish mother tongue). They have a book (which is actually for Swedish kids) and it's "eyes down, answer the questions, I'll be back in ten minutes"..... Not to mention dubbed Disney videos! They have to learn lists of vocab :roll: and verb tables and case endings but they still can't order a Big Mac in Finnish. They don't seem to do much dialogue or interactive stuff.

They are learning more Finnish at football and ice-hockey club than they are in school. Which is fine I suppose. But I do think the 6 hours per week in class are being a bit wasted.

Any hints?



Children learning Finnish foreign language in school

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Sara
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Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2002 10:00 pm
Location: Vantaa

Post by Sara » Fri Jan 23, 2004 2:56 pm

Well the best thing is to go in and speak to someone in the school about the classes. Let them know your worries and concerns. Its very possible the teacher isnt making every effort she can do.

Do your children have Finnish friends? Thats really the best way for them to learn the conversational skills.

Does the teacher speak any English at all?

Sounds like a very poor set-up :(

Rosamunda
Posts: 10649
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 12:07 am

FFL

Post by Rosamunda » Fri Jan 23, 2004 3:11 pm

My kids have plenty of Finnish friends but the problem is they ALL speak English! :roll:

We have been into the school several times. We asked for them to be given Finnish homework, the answer was "yes" but that was months ago and they still never get any. We asked for them to bring their books home once a week - "yes" but that never happens either. They had a test before Christmas (without any warning) and the results were dismal, they were confusing verb endings with case endings and worse.

We "hired" a really good student last summer holidays to help them and she played games, with them "Alias" "A-Ö" and stuff like that and really got them talking but I think the boys will go balistic if we do that term-time while they already have 6h of Finnish in class.

Tom and Jerry

Post by Tom and Jerry » Fri Jan 23, 2004 3:18 pm

It seems your kids have an unmotivated teacher. A discussion with the head master, principal teacher may help a lot.
Well, it's difficult anyhow for the children to learn a language a few hours a week.


"They have a book (which is actually for Swedish kids) and it's "eyes down, answer the questions, "

Ok, nothing wrong with that. It's different in Finland.


I'll be back in ten minutes".....

That's not allowed. Teacher has to stay with the pupils.


"Not to mention dubbed Disney videos! They have to learn lists of vocab and verb tables and case endings but t"

Ok, also the Finnish courses for the Swedish speaking Finns are similar.


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