Tag Archives: Austria

Session 10: Wings night closing party

It comes to an end we had our last session and I am a bit sad because we had a really awesome time together and we learned a lot. We had our last session at the wings place. At this place, we met each other for the first time here in Tampere and there we decided to do the each one teach one course. This was the reason why we decided we should do our last lesson at the wings place.

For the last session we had not a real goal. We just made a mash up between English, Spanish and German. This was extremely fun. I tried to speak most of the time in Spanish and Maria tried to say some vocabularies in German.

We ate together wings and made a recap about our lessons and what we have learned. We also gave feedback to each other. Moreover we both decided to try to study further German and Spanish. Therefore, we decided to skype from time to time so that we don’t loose our vocabulary and languages skills.

For me it was so much fun and it was a great experience for me. The each one teach one course is a great opportunity to learn, refresh a language and get to know a different culture.

All the best
Christoph

Session 9: Famous Austrian dish

I think our each one teach one blog gets more and more in a food related blog. Today was again a food related topic. Maria and I cooked together a famous Austrian dish called “Schnitzel”. Therefore, we met in the kitchen in TOAS city. We did the grocery shopping the day before so we were well prepared ad good to go.

So, the first part was the Spanish part although we cooked an Austrian dish. I explained the dish, the ingredients and the different steps to Maria in Spanish. Maria helped me to prepare the “Schnitzels”. At first, she had to roll them into flower, the second step was to roll them into eggs and afterward she had to roll them with bread crumbs. After that we fried them in the pan.

Moreover, we decided to play a game during the cooking to recap our vocabulary. We pointed on different thing in the kitchen and the other one had to name it in German or Spanish in my case. From my point of view, it was a bit unfair because I had already a basic knowledge of Spanish vocabulary before we started our Each on Teach one sessions. But I can still proudly say that I won three points ahead of Maria.

In the last lesson, we found out that we have not covered something extremely important for Maria and that were the directions. Therefore, after we finished our afternoon lunch we decided to go for a walk to practise Marias directions skills. We went to the Pyynikin Park. I explained the directions to Maria like a guide and the buildings. When we arrived at the park we switched the roles and Maria had to guide me back home in German. This was extremely fun and I was surprised that she learned the directions so fast. All in all, we had lots of fun and enjoyed our after lunch walk.

Session 6: Spanish tapas and Austrian Culture

Maybe you already noticed but most of our each one teach one lessons are food related. The reason is probably Maria and I are very much into food. I like to go in supermarkets buy new products and try out new cooking styles. Maria just likes to eat my food but actually she is not such a good chef. So, at the beginning of the lesson I was a bit nervous.

So, this time it was Marias turn to cook for me. In this session, we start with the Spanish lesson first because we were both so hungry. At first, we went to the supermarket, there we bought all the ingredients after that we went back in our residence to cook a Spanish omelette. We tried to speak the hole time in Spanish and we tried also to repeat the vocabulary from the previous sessions which was food related.

This lesson was so much fun because Maria need to ask her mother for help because she was not sure how to cook an original Spanish Omelette. So, Maria forced me to speak with her mother to. This was extremely challenging because I got used to the accent and the voice of Maria. Her mother spoke much faster with me and it was hard to understand her at the beginning. After the short Skype call we cooked the Spanish omelette together. This was a very nice Spanish lesson especially the eating part.

After that we switched to the German part. This time I wanted to show Maria something about Vienna. From my point of view Vienna is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. I made a virtual city tour with her. I showed Maria the most important places in Vienna. Moreover, I gave her some background information about them and I also tried to bring the Austrian history in.

I think this lesson was extremely useful for me, I could improve my listening skills. For Maria the lesson was too much related to the cultural aspects. I think we need to change that for the future lessons.

Session 5: Sports Football and Skiing

After our third lesson, we found our rhythm and way how to improve our languages skills in the best way. Therefore, we followed the plan and we divided also this lessons into two parts. This topic is for me extremely interesting because I am a huge sports fan. Maria is not so into sports but we have been together at two ice hockey games already, but this sport is not so popular in Austria and in Spain too.

The first part was for Maria. In Austria winter sport and especially skiing is extremely important for us. Therefore, I made again a little power point presentation for Maria. With some important vocabularies which were related to the Austrian culture and skiing. Moreover, I brought some Stroh over from Austria. This alcohol during the winter is extremely popular in Austria. When you make a break, and go to a cottage you order a tee with Stroh.

Furthermore, I explained Maria skiing. Maria has never done it before so we did some exercises. That was extremely fun. From my point of view this lesson for Maria was quite a success. Maria got a feeling about the Austrian Skiing Culture and she also got to knew some important phrases which was her goal at the beginning of the course.

The second part was a bit more interactive because I like really much sport it was important for me that I can speak about it in Spanish. So, we tried to talk the whole lesson in Spanish. We went throw different sports like tennis, volleyball and swimming. I got to know a lot of vocabulary. This time Maria tried to write down my mistakes and in the end, we went throw them. This was extremely helpful for me. During the lesson, we found out that I make the mistakes again and again so we tried out a new way.

Furthermore, I wrote the vocabularies down which I don’t know. This was a long list concerning this topic. So, I will have to study a lot for the next lesson to remember all this for me important vocabulary.

Session 4: Austrian Dishes

The Topic of the fourth each one teach one lesson was: “Austrian Culture and dishes and Spanish vocabulary”. Therefore, Maria and I met in Toas City in the kitchen. It was very nice because we had also a black board where we could write important vocabulary and phrases down. Because of the last experiences, we did in the first part some basic German vocabulary. Moreover, we translated all the kitchen ware into German and Spanish. IMG_5410

After that I taught Maria something more about the Austrian Culture. Therefore, I made another small power point presentation with famous Austrian dishes. The second part was my turn. Maria and I cooked together an apple pie, in Austria it is called Apfelstrudel. In Austria, this dessert is extremely famous. I had to explain Maria all the ingredients and the process ins Spanish. This was extremely hard for me because it was a specific vocabulary. Therefore, Maria had to help me out and correct me a lot. In the end, we sit together and eat the apple pie and repeated the vocabulary which we have learned.IMG_4454

All the best
Christoph

Session 3: Lets go shopping!

In our third each one teach one lesson last Friday we went shopping together in Tampere. The goal of this lesson was that Maria can ask for the price and is able to remember some clothing vocabulary. My goal was  to speak with her all the time in Spanish and try to repeat as much vocabulary as I can.

Our first stop was at the big shopping mall in Tampere Keskustori. In the mall, we went in different shops for example to H&M, the sport stores and some other fashion stores. After that we went to buy some food and discussed our next lessen what we are going to cook. Because our next topic is Austrian food.

For me this lesson was so much fun and I really enjoyed it. I could speak with Maria a lot in Spanish and I learned a lot of new skills. Every time when I made a mistake Maria corrected me and I tried to repeat the sentence again in the correct way at a different time. For me this was one of the most effective classes because I spoke the whole time in Spanish.

I think for Maria it was a bit harder. Maria learning style is different and she needs to write down the new vocabulary. Therefore, I think Maria didn’t gained so German languages skills from this meeting. Nevertheless, we repeated the numbers with the price tags and the introduction in German.

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For the upcoming classes, we discussed that we are going to divide the two parts strict. Maria needs a table where she can write down the vocabulary and the grammar and for me we will make it more practical because than I can speak easier and learn more.

All the Best Christoph

A catch-up

After a 2 week break Alex and I met again for coffee.  I have been away for my brothers wedding and had taken the opportunity that my trip home afforded me to introduce my friends here to some Scottish sweets.

I gave Alex some tablet to try which is made from sugar, condensed milk and butter it is then later infused with vanilla of whisky -in this case vanilla. As has been the common feedback with those that have tried it, it tastes a little like caramel.  Below is an example of what it looks like, this is not the actual one I brought back as that has all gone!

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The conversation then moved to Alexs’ thesis work and the differences between Austrian and Scottish university education. The grading systems are different in Austria than to Scotland which are in turn different to Finland, needless to say upon my arrival here I was very confused as to the grading of my work.

Our next meeting will be meeting number 10 the minimum requirement for meetings. Hopefully we will have time to meet more often however between exams and thesis work I foresee this being difficult.

The Beginning of a Linguistic Adventure

The language and culture I am learning about is German. Alex Lang will be taking on this rather daunting task and in return I will help him consolidate his knowledge of the English language and share a little of my own culture with him.

During our first meeting we outlined our preliminary plan but our conversation took a turn down many different avenues as we discussed what we would each like to learn from the other. For myself it was to gain a basic understanding of the German language and be able to construct sentences and questions to be able to communicate conversationally.  We spoke of Scotland and its many myths and legends including that of the Loch Ness monster “Nessie”. I hope to learn about some German/ Austrian folk tales and maybe practice reading some German.

Many turns of phrase in English are due to the beliefs of our ancestors for example; when someone sneezes we say “bless you” this is because many years ago it was believed that when you sneezed it was part of your soul escaping and by saying bless you the soul was encouraged back into the body. From this discussion I learned that in German you say gesundheit.

For our next meeting we plan to go to an Italian restaurant and learn different foods. I am looking forward to learning more German.

 

Cooking time!

After our Lapland trip, where we had to cook together, we decided to repeat this. So Georg invited me to join a typical Austrian dinner. He and some other friends prepared “Schweinsbraten”. It is typical Austrian and you can order it in every good restaurant. Altogether we were nine people and everybody had a special job to do. Some prepared the side dished like salad, dumplings and red cabbage. Georg and I were responsible for the most important ingredient, the meat! We went to the market hall and bought 3,5 kilogram of pork. “Schweinsbraten” takes really long to get ready. Altogether it was in the oven for more then 1,5 hours. We always had to check it and did some herbal brews. A really funny aspect I learned is that in some Austrian families it is common to eat this meal every Sunday. Actually it is really unhealthy. I don’t know how many calories I ate on this day, but I am sure it is much more than two Menus at McDonalds. But the taste of the food and the fun we had while preparing it, was absolutely worth it!  🙂

 

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Austria vs. Germany

Todays topic is the German versus the Austrian country, culture and language. Even if the language in Austria and Germany are actually the same, there are a lot of differences. Not only words, but also the pronounciation differs! To be honest, for me as a German it is even easier talking English to austrian than German. But most Austrians can understand the “proper” German.

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As you can see on the map below, Austria is much smaller than Germany. Germans capital Berlin and Austrias capital Vienna are both really international.

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Taking a closer look at the prices in both countries one can definitely say that Austria is much more expensive than Germany. Especially hotels and commodity prices are much higher in Austria.

The food itself is probably quite similar. Typical Austrian food is “Leberkäs” or “Kaiserschmarrn”, but it is also common in Germany. Austrians and Germans are really spoiled when it comes to bread and cakes. There are a lot of bakery shops that only sell various kinds of breads. 🙂