Monday, April 8, 2013

First day of school

Today was my first day of school teaching in Sweden at Folkungaskolan. I caught the bus to school and it took a total of 15 minutes - 10 for the bus and 5 for walking up to the school. I have two supervisors, but I only met one today, Karin. She is a fifth grade teacher for English, Swedish, and social studies. I will be working with her to teach her English classes.

In class today I introduced myself through a Prezi. Then, students had a conversation exercise, and they were done! They are working on speaking in English using the proper tenses between past and present. After class, Karin gave me a guided tour of the school, introduced me to the headmasters and other teachers, and then we went to the teacher's lounge for some fika. Every teacher had their own labeled coffee mug hanging on the wall ready to be used during the fika breaks. It's definitely different to see the teachers have so much break time compared to in the US. 

There are some differences that I've noticed so far. For one, there are many breaks in the day with the teachers having numerous long planning periods or days off during the week. When teachers are having these breaks, the students just go outside and play with each other so they have much more recess here. Teachers also dress more casually. Jeans are worn everyday without an issue. For the students, they wear socks in class! Some even have some slippers to wear that they keep at their desks. 

So far, so good! Tomorrow, I meet my second supervisor Björn. Will write more soon! 


  1. I see some snow and no leaves on the trees, in your pictures. Can you give me an example of North American city at a similar geographic latitude? How is your Swedish? Tell me more about what or who a Prezi is. I know you are there to instruct English, but I'm interested in how you are communicating with others outside of the classroom.

    1. I'm working on learning some Swedish. I've got down some key works like hi, bye, thank you, excuse me, and I'm working on some key phrases. Hopefully, I will get much better! Everyone pretty much speaks at least a little bit of English which is nice.

      A Prezi is basically like a web based form of Powerpoint that is a little bit higher tech. Go to and that is where you access it all. They have some examples that you can look at and they explain how it works so you could see first hand.

      Outside of the classroom to communicate, it's basically all in English with the teachers and students because they speak it pretty fluently. In shops and things like that if we have questions we ask if they speak English and normally they do, so I haven't really ran into problems trying to communicate. When teachers are speaking to each other or I have gone to meetings, they are speaking Swedish, but normally after the conversation my teacher will translate for me what they were talking about. Sometimes though I can pick up on it because of their mannerisms. It just depends.

  2. UP! Linkoping is on the same latitude as Hebron, New Brunswick, Canada and
    Juneau, Alaska.

    1. Linkoping, Sweden 58.41
      Juneau, Alaska 58.35
      Edmonton, Canada 53.55
      London, England 51.48
      Montreal, Canada 45.51
      New York City, NY 40.78
      Bowling Green, KY 36.99
      Houston, TX 29.75

      I think it's a few weeks before spring is there...

    2. It's definitely cold here. We are pretty excited because it might get to 50 this weekend, but it snowed really hard here today!

    3. I left out:
      Arctic Circle 66.55