Close • Posted by 48 minutes ago. Or I don’t know, ’cause I’m from Finland and I speak Finnish so… whatever. Create your own unique website with customizable templates. In other words Finnish is different. What is your French like now? The language is in the Finno-Urgic language family, so it doesn't have any Latin or German influence to help you guess what something means. In addition to the usual challenges that come with learning any language from scratch, people studying Mandarin must also memorize thousands of special characters, unlike anything seen in Latin-based languages. "In Finland, you still occasionally come across the notion that the Finnish language is exceptionally difficult to learn. Number of native speakers: 260 million Grammatical concepts: 3/5 Language family: 3/5 Sounds and tones: 3/5 Writing system: 4/5 Cultural distance: 3/5 Language resources: 1/5 Hindi is highly phonetic, which means it’s spelled the way it sounds – score! Our article tells you why that’s simply not true. For an English speaker, however, mastering Mandarin is a tall order. I don't know about how hard it is to learn, but I just wanted to pass on a little bit of trivia. Finnish is in the Finno-Ugric language family, with Estonian and Hungarian. Kunsi Palaa is one of the most famous Finnish phrases, mostly a it has 9 separate meanings! For Chinese speakers like us, we would find learning Japanese, Korean much easier. Many native speakers might hesitate, for example, between the imperfect forms kielsi and kielti, meaning “he forbade”. Recent years have seen numerous new Finnish-as-a-second-language textbooks hit the market – so many that one article cannot claim to encompass … The point of this article is to give you the information I wish I had had before I started learning Finnish, because (even though I learned it very quickly) it would have made the whole process much easier, and there would have been much fewer moments of tearing my hair out and screaming curses to the gods. This means that in a certain geographical area, languages which differ from each other typologically share other similarities which result from living in a similar environment. Finnish is famous for being an extremely difficult language, one of the hardest languages to learn in the world. Finnish grammar rules are unimaginably crazy for an English speaker. If you want to learn Finnish then I suggest you read this article first. One example of this is the change ti > si which started hundreds of years ago and is still continuing. Remember how you learnt (or failed to learn) French at school. Unfortunately, the study of any foreign language requires work – and often very hard work. 2. Why learn Finnish. Published by the Finland Promotion Board Learning any language from scratch is difficult, and Finnish grammar is notoriously complex, with 15 cases that may or may not look totally different in their singular and plural forms. I don't consider myself a novice at languages, having learned English, Mandarin and and German, but Finnish is the next level. Besides that, however, Hindi has some challenging differences in terms of grammar, pronunciation and writing. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. Finnish pronunciation isn’t far from English, but this language’s grammar certainly makes it one of the hardest languages. Finnish often expresses ideas very differently from the ways of the more commonly studied European languages. Most teachers give students some homework but many students do not do it. But I do agree that Chinese language(s) are the most difficult to learn languages and master in the world. Finnish Barry Farber, the author of “How to Learn any Language” and a polyglot many times over, says that Finnish is one of the hardest languages for him to learn. But this does not make it more difficult than other languages. The Defense Language Institute in California gives Finnish a difficulty rating of III (out of four) in terms of difficulty for native English speakers to learn, making it the perfect language for anyone who likes a challenge. The biggest problem is where to start. Thanks to it being a tonal language, every sound in Mandarin’s phonetic transcription system pinyin has four distinct pronunciations. Well, of course, this is fact only for native English speakers, and simialiar language family. Actually it's not! The FSI estimates that it would take 44 weeks or 1100 hours to before Finnish rolls off the tongue. But this does not make it more difficult than other languages. How many classes did you have with teacher every week? In fact, Finnish is a very logical language, as many students who have methodologically studied it admit. Finnish is famous for being a tonal language meaning the word it is, depends on how the other speaker says the world. When people study Finnish abroad it is most often once a week for perhaps two hours at a time in an evening class. 1. Finnish is unrelated to any other language in the area. The greatest obstacle is the vocabulary, which requires memory; and the teacher cannot memorise for you. Finnish has a reputation for being a tricky language to learn, and with good reason. Start by giving yourself a strong basis in the sounds and phrases of the language. Practice often using smart techniques, and practice it on fluent speakers as often as possible. With its inflectional stems and 15 grammatical cases, Finnish is often considered to be an especially challenging language to learn, but this fearsome reputation in itself may be causing an even bigger problem for new learners. They change, and, therefore, it is often impossible to give a strict rule for a particular grammatical point. Finnish often expresses ideas very differently from the ways of the more commonly studied European languages. I'd like to explain to you why Finnish can actually be very easy to learn. This simple sentence translates into Finnish as Minä pidän sinusta. The level of difficulty you're likely to face depends on a couple of factors. Because of the same environment, a common history, culture and contacts, Scandinavian languages, German and Finnish share some features (perhaps mostly in vocabulary) which bind them together and accordingly make it easier for people who know these languages to understand some features of Finnish. Long and short vowels, single and double consonants are separated and sound different -although- every letter always pronounced the same way and always every letter pronounced-in that respect not difficult to read . The English sentence is very easy for a foreigner to handle because you simply place one word after the other. To start with, Finnish is a very demanding language, not least for a teacher and an author of a Finnish textbook. If a young Finnish man were bold enough to express such feelings in words, he would be more likely to say something like: Mä tykkään susta. Like most languages, you can learn to speak Finnish with time, effort, and dedication. You want to learn but there seems to be no end to what you have to remember before you can form even the most simple statement. Estonia and Hungary are almost, or completely as hard as Finnish, to learn. ", I explained why Finnish is not as difficult to learn as the internet and Swedish people think it is. First, Hindi uses an SOV (subject object verb) word order and has new sounds for English speakers, including dhaand hka. If you want it, then go get it! (: Reply. Let’s have a word about the origins and idiosyncrasies of the Finnish language. Despite these simplifying factors, Finnish is undoubtedly an exceedingly difficult language to learn. But is Finnish more difficult than French or Spanish or Latin or German which you might have studied at school? Is it just to learn a little conversational Finnish and to keep the students amused for two hours per week? Read my suggestions carefully. Colloquial Finnish often differs markedly from the standard language. Tamil is a Dravidian language, which would be significantly less difficult to learn for speakers of languages from the same family. Add that to the fact that Chinese is a language rich in homophones and full of idioms and aphorisms picked up … Mandarin Chinese is challenging for a number of reasons. Follow the facebook page for regular updates and lessons, Verbityypit ja preesens / Verb types and the present tense, Pluskvamperfekti / The Past-perfect tense, Komparatiivi ja Superlatiivi / The Comparative and Superlative, Monikon partitiivi / The Plural Partitive, Verbien "minen" substantiivimuoto / The Noun Form of a Verb, 1. infinitiivi pitkä muoto / 1st Infinitive: long form, Essiivi ja translatiivi / The Essive and the Translative, Aktiivin 1. partisiippi / The Active 1st Participle, Aktiivin 2. partisiippi / The Active 2nd Participle, Passiivin 1. partisiippi / The Passive 1st Participle, Passiivin 2. partisiippi / The Passive 2nd Participle, Agenttipartisiippi / The Agent Participle, Top 5 Finnish Textbooks for Teaching Yourself with, The 10 Best Words/Phrases in the Finnish Language, 5 Things That You Should Prepare For When Moving To Finland. According to a freshly-released list Finnish is among the group of languages the FSI considers to be the most difficult for English speakers to learn. But this does not make it more difficult than other languages. This is based on my own experience of studying and teaching Finnish. Maybe that reputation is deserved, but there are a couple of things that certainly don’t make Finnish as hard as people think it is. If you type "Learn Finnish" or "Finnish language" into a search engine, usually you'll see loads of stuff about Finnish being the world's second or third most difficult language, and there is a … Just try your best and ask people to correct you, learning takes time but can be really rewarding. But let’s face another fact: Finnish is not only intimidating, it is hard. Finnish. Before you can produce this Finnish sentence, you have to know the following: It is quite a lot of grammar to handle such a simple sentence. User account menu • They weren't kidding when they said that Finnish is a difficult language to learn. Nouns have 15 different cases, while in English, they have only three: subjective, objective, possessive. Before being part of the Foreign Correspondents’ Programme (FCP), I knew how challenging the mastery of the language is. Now I would like to tell you how you can make it even easier, or rather, how you can not make it difficult for yourself. Sure, Finnish is difficult to learn. Log in sign up. As the reader might already have guessed, my usual reply to the question is: it is not difficult but different. Finnish is different. How easily can a foreigner learn a language like this? In other words Finnish is different. For these reasons, the problem facing the teacher of Finnish is to decide in which order grammar and vocabulary should be taught and how thoroughly they should be learnt. 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