All posts by Kinga Janur

It’s not goodbye yet

Our last meeting was a lunch meeting at Linna, on my departure day of the Lappland trip. Actually we wanted to do something special for our last meeting, like cooking something french and german, but the lapland trips came into our way. So we agreed on meeting, when we are both black in Tampere and do then our special last meeting. 

Back to the meeting, Valentin gave me an update about the yellow wests and their protests. Of course we talked also about the activities we booked for the lapland trip. Both of us were super excited and I learned some arctic vocabulary:

arctic =  l’arctique

reindeer = le renne

husky = le chien de traîneau

northern lights = auroras boréales

snow = la neige

cold = fraud

Now I want to give some general feedback about class itself. It gave me not only the possibility to refresh the french language, make a new friend and learn a lot about the french culture. I am really looking forward to our really last meeting and am grateful for this experience. My french improved and I hope Valentin can say the same about his german skills.  I think that I will be sad when we have to say goodbye to each other.

Past tense again

After the Christmas Party we got back to serious business. Valentin remembered that I wasn’t that fit in the past tense and challenged me the during the whole meeting about the imparfait and passé composé, while we were talking about our past internships. I was really challenged but i learned a lot about the french past tense and it was a good exercise. Likewise I challenged him with the three different genders „der, die, das“. It was difficult enough for him, but he managed it better than expected.

We met in the Pinja kitchen before the farewell sauna event and went there afterwards.

Time to get into the christmas spirit

„Douce Nuit“ or „Stille Nacht“ is a well known christmas carol in both countries. To get into the christmas spirit our eight meeting took place at the Eoto pre christmas party. Both of us brought some food from their home country. I am super proud of Valentin, because he went out of his UTA universe and came to the Solu Building at the TAMK Campus. Before we went to the party I gave him a short tour around the campus. 

Afterwards we went to the party, ate some nice foreign food and got to know people from other countries! That was a really nice possibility to talk about the „Each One Teach One“ experience and what kind of meetings they did. We stayed about one and a half hour and didn’t teach any french or german, but at least we met new people.  

Study Break

Brace yourselves exams are coming. That’s the reason why my Each one teach one partner and me spent the past weeks in the library. So we decided to take a study break and just meet for coffee in the library. The break ended in a quiet deep discussion about the german and french politicians and their resigning habbits. So the main difference between Germany and France is that politicians, that make mistakes need to resign in Germany. In France they can basically do whatever they want and they don’t need to resign.

This discussion took over an hour and unfortunately we needed to go back to our studies. Of course we learned and revised some vocabulary in the field of politics. I was very happy that Valentin didn’t torture me with the different kinds of past tense in french. 

Yellow Wests

Our sixth meeting was last Saturday, we met in the kitchen of our student housing. So first we talked about black friday again, but now about the shopping we did. I learned, that you can use two different past tense in french and got confused about it. But still, I could say what I wanted to ( after five minutes and several corrections by Valentin.)

Later on I tried to write the new learned sentences down and it wasn’t as easy as expected. We also did some german teaching, and figured out, that it is also a complicated language. 

The next topic were the riots in France about the increasing prices of gasoline. It was new to me, that the demonstrating people found themselves and organized everything through facebook. And as a fun fact, every french driver has these yellow west in his car to wear, when there is a kind of accident and they get easily seen.

Coffee with some french and german

The fifth meeting was a study break and took place in the oasis at UTA Campus, just two days after our last meeting before the sitsit. We didn’t play any games, just had coffee and talked about our black friday shopping plans and drank coffee. Apparently you can get the cheapest coffee on campus at vending machine in oasis. So good to know 🙂 

I continued with the french past tense and with the practice I’m getting already a little better. Every time Valentin was saying something i asked him to try to say it in german aswell. It was fun, but I hope that he learned something and had also some fun. 

Here is a picture from our last meeting, taken at the sitsit, because I forgot to take one from oasis.

Fourth Meeting

Finally we found time to meet again and so our fourth meeting took place. In the last four weeks both of us were traveling a lot, so we had  stories to tell about Stockholm, St. Petersburg and Copenhagen. So Valentin talked to me in German and I tried to talk to him in French, but I struggled with the past tense. Still he is a good teacher and corrected me right away. So I hope we will practice it on the next meeting, which is tomorrow. After that, we went to the ESN Christmas sitsit to learn more about the finnish student culture and had a lot of fun.

Fun and Games

On our third meeting we met for lunch and went afterwards to the oasis in UTA to play some board games. We decided to play CATAN, because there weren’t much finnish cards to translate and Valentin knew the rules. For me it was the first time i played this game and it was so much fun. You have to be the first player who gets 10 points and you can earn these points by building roads and villages or cities. To do so you need resources as brick, stone, weed and sheep. Unfortunately i lost the game, but that is ok.

We used this opportunity to learn new vocabulary and refresh the old one around the topic of board games. We translated phrases like ” It’s your turn” and ” roll the dice”. In addition to that we had a repetition according to numbers.

Enjoying finnish Fall

We went for a walk to the Lake in Lapinkaari, because the weather was better than expected and we decided spontaneous to enjoy the finnish fall. On our way there we took turns speaking in french and german. It was quite hard to get into the language. We talked about german and french media and it got easier as we went on and corrected each other straight away.

We arrived at a pier and sat there for a long time, talked about how we celebrate Christmas in each country and enjoyed the nature. 

Next time we want to speak for a longer period in each language. Every time it’s hard to get going, but afterwards we are remembering much more vocabulary and it gets easier. We already scheduled our next meeting for Wednesday.

Is Disneyland the french dream?

Our first meeting was on a sunny Sunday afternoon. We went to a café called „Paella“ on Tampere’s main street. It is a cute place with lots of light and delicious coffee. At first we talked in englisch about our weekends and our classes in Finland. 

After that we switched to the language we want tot learn. So we just said something in english and afterwards tried to translate in in french oder german. Valentin’s german is really good and he hadn’t had many problems with the translating. I had a lot more trouble translating it, because I realized, that i almost forgot all the french words i learned at school. But after a few sentences it got easier for me. 

We talked a lot about cultural stuff and also about Disneyland. For me it’s like one big childhood dream and for many french people as-well. Furthermore Valentin told me, that there is a train going from my german hometown straight to disneyland. So that is an activity i have to put on my bucket list for when I’m returning home. We’ve got so involved into talking, that I even forgot to take some pictures for the blog post. Next time I will remember 🙂 

All in all we sat in the café for around two hours and didn’t even realized how fast time was running. Afterwards  we took a small walk through Tampere and talked about the trips we already did.