Hej! My name is Hanna and I joined Coffee Break in 2019. I am doing the Coffee Break Swedish podcast with Mark. I’ve been teaching adults and children Swedish for the last 10 years, since I moved to Scotland. I teach Swedish at the Centre for Open Studies at Glasgow University.
What experience have you had speaking and learning other languages?
I haven’t always been interested in languages, but as a teenager I visited Britain and I loved it. All of a sudden, English became a tool to understand a culture and communicate with friends and not just a subject you had to do in school. Nowadays, I enjoy learning other languages as well, and in the last few years I have done classes in Spanish, German and French.
What are your favourite memories of working with Coffee Break?
As I am quite new to the team, I don’t have so many memories yet, but I have really enjoyed making the podcast, as it’s very different from teaching in a classroom full of students. I have also enjoyed Mark’s love of ABBA – it’s great when somebody appreciates the highest form of Swedish culture 😉
Where would your ideal coffee break be and with whom?
Because I live abroad, I would choose to have a coffee break with my family or best friends, as I don’t see them enough. In Sweden, coffee breaks are an important part of our culture, so I would have a very traditional Swedish fika, with Swedish coffee and kanelbulle or prinsesstårta. If none of my family or friends had time with me, and if she was still alive, I would love to have a fika with Tove Jansson.
Favourite language: This may sound strange coming from a Swede, but I really like Danish.
Favourite word/phrase in the language: I just learnt the Danish word kvajebajer.
Favourite film: Gräns – a quite odd Swedish film about trolls
Favourite TV show: I loved the Danish show Borgen
Favourite book: Gift by Tove Ditlevsen
Favourite singer: The Swedish singer Annika Norlin and her band Säkert
Favourite destination: I love the sea, so Cornwall, the Hebrides or the Swedish archipelago are places I love.
Do you have a message for the Coffee Break Community?
I always tell my students that it’s about immersing yourself in a language. Read and listen to things you are interested in. Have the courage to speak to people and do not to worry too much about making mistakes, because it’s by making mistakes that we learn. It’s more important that you dare to speak than to say it perfectly from the start.