This is the first of a 2-part series on how I practice my Swedish. The next part will cover learning Swedish by reading. I welcome your comments on how you go about learning Swedish.
In many ways, I feel that constant computer, texting, cell phone obsession is not good for human interaction but when it comes to listening to Swedish, living in the 21st century is a big plus.
Here I am with headphones on at work, listening to Swedish Radio
1. “Gert’s World”
This is a program on Swedish radio station RIX FM. Gert Fylking’s program comes on at 22:00 Swedish time. Gert “your voice in the night” thinks of an issue and Swedes call in and discuss it. I listen over the Internet while I am work. (By the way, it’s quite hard to type in English when you have someone speaking Swedish in your headphones!)
I love listening to this show! I don’t always understand what they’re saying. I freely admit that for quite awhile I did not realize the radio “jingle” they play during his show was “Gert’s Värld” (Gert’s World). I thought it was “Gert’s Svärd” (Gert’s Sword). Doh!
The day I realized I was following his conversation about “astral projection” and in Swedish, was a happy day for me.
Swedish Radio P4’s Klartext radio program recently won the Lätta Priset 2011. Klartext offers the news from Sweden and beyond at a slower pace, with easier words. It’s a fantastic program that I podcast every weekday and listen to during my commute. I usually read the daily recap on their site first to give me a hint at what I am going to listen to.
Movies are a great way to listen to Swedish. I like to display the Swedish text at the bottom when possible. Some of my favorites include:
* “One Step Behind” (Steget Efter)
Hello? Rolf Lassgård is the Kurt Wallendar.
* Arn (Arn – Tempelriddaren)
This is the movie version of the famous Knight Templar story by Jan Guillou. The dialogue is in a handful of languages including Swedish, Arabic, English, and Norwegian.
* Under the Sun (Under Solen)
This one is very romantic and practically guaranteed to be loved by us gals. Yes, it stars my “movie husband,” Rolf Lassgård. (Don’t tell me you don’t have a movie husband or a movie wife?)
* After the Wedding (Efter brylluppet)
This film is by Suzanne Bier so most of it’s in Danish. But Rolf Lassgård (oh all right, I’m obsessed!) speaks Swedish and I like hearing Swedish in the midst of all that Danish. Plus, actor Mads Mikkelsen is fun to watch.
4. Sommar på P1
This program is on Swedish Radio P1. Each year since 1959, famous artists, athletes, politicians, academics and individuals tell their stories. You can podcast or stream them. Some hosts are easier to understand than others, but it’s a great way to practice.
I first started learning Swedish back in the day with Linguaphone cassettes. It’s a great program that is still sold today. (I swapped out the cassettes for CDs a few years back and then copied them to my iPod. I still listen to them).
Do you have any other ways to practice listening to Swedish in your home country? Please share them! (I’ll discuss my ways of reading Swedish very soon.)