The Finnish Language School of Minnesota offers courses for children and adults from beginner to high fluency, in-person and online. In-person classes are held in Minneapolis and online classes are conducted live via Zoom.
5-8 classes held once-weekly, designed for adults (and older teens). Each course is typically offered three times annually. Course levels can be repeated without redundancy, as the theme changes each course.
BEGINNER 1: Learn practical basics with themed conversation and vocabulary building. No prerequisite Finnish skills necessary.
INTERMEDIATE: Join the lukupiiri, book club, using the simplified version of Mielensäpahoittaja. Learn language structures, vocabulary, and Finnish culture through reading. This class is suitable if you feel you can read simple texts in Finnish.
IMMERSION: Engage in themed topics of discussion for building fluency. Teaching and communication is predominantly in Finnish in this course.
Teacher: Lily O.
6-8 classes held on first and third Saturdays in a Fall semester and a Spring semester. In-person courses may be added or combined depending upon registration each semester. Students and families are encouraged (but not required) to volunteer for the school, such as by participating in annual event preparation, managing the library, serving on the board, or substitute teaching.
LITTLES: Baby and Parent 0-2 years. Guided time 10-10:45, followed by social play until 11. It is optional to stay and socialize until 11:30. Each class time has a topic or theme integrated into songs, fingerplays, stories, and sensory activities. Learn and share how to integrate Finnish language and culture into your routine at home. This class is primarily immersive, but no previous knowledge of Finnish is required.
EARLY CHILDREN’S IMMERSION: 3-6 years. Parents are welcome but not required to participate in this class, depending on the child’s development stage. Pre-literate students will learn Finnish vocabulary and culture through songs and music, games, arts and crafts, and storytime. Typical pre-school concepts such as alphabet, counting, colors, shapes, social and emotional connection and cooperation are integrated through a Finnish lens, with a topical theme for each class. Sähly and other sports will be introduced (separate from the older children) and students will also participate in baking. This class is primarily immersive and appropriate for both new or beginner and higher fluency speakers.
CHILDREN’S IMMERSION: 5 years and older. This class is best suited for students who already speak Finnish and are looking to improve their Finnish skills through fun games, arts and crafts activities, and cooking. Some reading and writing is included. The first Saturday of each month we will have a sähly (floor hockey) game in the gym with Anne and every third Saturday class will include a cooking activity in the kitchen with Lotta. Both teachers are native Finns and the class is fully immersive.
CHILDREN’S BEGINNER: 7 years and older. Each class time we work on basics like the alphabet, introductions and greetings, and super fun things like verbs. This fall our theme will be kotona, koulussa, kaupungilla. In class, we read, write and speak out what we learn. We will also work on putting a glossary together. One Saturday a month, we also play sähly (Finnish floor hockey) and on another, bake traditional Finnish goodies. Please bring a notebook and a pen. Nähdään!
ADULTS’ BEGINNER PLUS: Combined Beginner/Intermediate class for adults. Materials used in class are based on the textbook Finnish for Foreigners. Each class time includes teaching vocabulary for a practical scenario (i.e. restaurant, taxi, hospital, railway station), and two verbs conjunction, plus pronunciation practice with a game. We also introduce or reviews a grammar subject and discuss cultural topics. This class is beneficial to both new and repeat students.