Friday, 24 August 2012

Intensively learning Finnish language and culture

In an earlier post there was an introduction to EILC language course and NSS summer school that were organized here in TAMK this summer. Now those three weeks with EILC and NSS are over. Everybody passed they’re Finnish exams and they will start the “official” part of their exchange studies with 5 ECTS credits in pocket. EILC consist mainly out of many language lessons but they still had time to some free time activities of which most were chosen to reflect Finnish culture and habits.

Introduction to Nordic walking
Mr Esko Tirkkonen, responsible person of TAMK sports, gave EILC and NSS students an introduction to Nordic walking. After a short demonstration Esko lead the group to a 5km round in Kauppi park. During the stroll students also got to experience the diversity of Finnish nature; first the sun was shining but when we were in the middle of the forest, it started raining. Luckily it was just a short shower of rain so people didn’t get completely wet. 



Time to play exhibition in Vapriikki
We didn’t forget culture either, since one afternoon EILC and NSS participants had the chance to visit museum center Vapriikki. Even though the average age of students was about 20, many of the students were really excited about the Time to Play -exhibition. Most people got also excited about the real Angry Birds game that was brought to the museum under the theme Flying – Birds in Vapriikki.  
Real angry birs game
Because of the staff day in TAMK, one day was devoted only for free time activities. One auditorium in TAMK was changed into a movie theatre where language course students watched Finnish film called Steam of life. Afternoon we spent in the amusement park Särkänniemi. Some people were running from a roller coaster to another when the rest were satisfied with visiting the zoo, Näsinneula tower, dolphinerium and  looking how others turned into greener and greener after every ride… Or then yours truly was the only one turning greener and greener.

Finnish food tasting

Since there was many different language courses organized at the same time in Tampere, the course secretaries decided to plan some activities for all language course participants. All the students from TAMK EILC and NSS plus the EILC course of UTA and SITR summer school also organized in UTA took part of Finnish food tasting happening in UTA premises. About 120 exchange students gathered together to taste some Finnish specialties’ such as black sausage, rye bread, Karelian pie etc. The Food Tasting included also a Finnish quiz and interview assignment. Participants had to answer some questions mainly related to Finnish food and since they were language course students, they also had to interview each others in Finnish.


All 120 language course participants gathered together again for a lecture about Finnish Hobbities and Oddities. Lecture was kept by all the course secretaries, ms Tiia Partanen (EILC and NSS at TAMK), ms Tiina Rautiainen (EILC at UTA) and ms Eija Simelius (SITR at UTA). The lecture culminated into a Mini Olympics in Finnish style where students had chance to try e.g. Nordic walking, Angry bird throwing, Air guitar and wife carrying.  





At the end of the EILC course, EILC students took part of Finnish language exam. Everybody passed the exam with flying flags and it was time to celebrate the end of the courses with watching a Finnish movie Lapland Odyssey. On last Friday all students received certificates to prove that they had taken part of either EILC language course or NSS summer school. Farewell party for both courses started with an ice-hockey match in Hakametsä ice hall. Tappara played against a Czech team. After the match almost everyone gathered together to cottage in Rauhanniemi to spend the evening.

Tiia in Vapriikki
On behalf of TAMK international services I’d like to thank everybody who participated to EILC course or NSS summer school, Finnish teachers and especially our course secretary Tiia who made these courses unforgettable for all participants.

All EILC and NSS participants

Text: Sanna Hosike, trainee, International Services
Pictures: Tiia Partanen, course secretary of language courses, International Services

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