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Interview with a Swedish learner – Elena

Elena has been living in Stockholm since January 2013. She worked in a Swedish telecom company in Russia and almost 3 years ago she was invited to work in Stockholm. It changed her life. She fell in love in Stockholm, with a Swedish guy.
Elena’s first impressions of Stockholm was not so nice: darkness, cold, windy, introverted people, crazy salary day… But with each passing day and month, the city and the people in it slowly started to appear in a new way: the Swedes catching the rays of the sun on a bench in the park, colleagues who do not dare to take the last cookie during the fika, amazing Swedish Design and musicality, old family traditions and at the same time absolute freedom of expression. This may sound standard, Elena points out, but the studying the language help her to explore the country on a deeper level and feel at home.

What led you to want to learn Swedish?

I’d like to know the Swedish language to understand local culture, to use it for my job, to communicate with my husband’s family.

When and how did you start learning Swedish?

I started my journey with the Swedish language in the autumn of 2013. My first courses were with a Russian teacher. Now I am doing lessons with Anneli.

How much do you currently use the Swedish language, and why?

I use Swedish language when I communicate with my husband’s family in Sweden and during informal meetings with my work colleagues.

What have been the challenges for you in learning Swedish?

It is difficult for me to remember new words, to use partikelverb (phrasal verbs), the articles en and ett.

What is your proudest moment as a Swedish speaker?

I am proud to have an opportunity to communicate with my husband’s family. And my colleagues were surprised when I suddenly answered them in Swedish!

Can you recommend any Swedish books that are good for learning Swedish?

Avancera ord, Se upp, Svensk grammatik med drillövningar och facit, books by Liza Marklund.

Can you recommend any online/media resources for learning Swedish?

Anki, Duolingo

Do you have any other advice for future, budding Swedish learners?

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes!

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