Learning the new language has been so exciting. I have to say that I am not one of those people who will study a language from books, because I think I can learn more if I go out with my friends or do things together. After seven months in Finland I can say that I understand the language well and I do my best to speak Finnish, of course not as good as I would like to.

When I realized that I could understand Finnish for the first time I was very excited. Many funny things and misunderstandings happened as I was learning the language. For example, instead of saying “lautanen” which means dish I said “korhonen” which is the last name of my friend. So it was very funny when I asked them to “pass me the Korhonen”! The other day I did not know how to say pork and I said in Finnish “ham with life” so people would understand me. We all had a good laugh about that 😀

See Alejandra show off her Finnish language skills

In general this is a great experience and I hope to learn every day more words and more about this fabulous language. Although I cannot say that I understand everything perfectly, I feel satisfied with saying and knowing a bit of one of the most difficult languages ​​in the world – Finnish.


By Alejandra de Dios Betancourts, AFS student from Colombia on exchange in Finland. Alejandra is one of the young deserving students who received the Changemakers scholarship to participate in a year-long school exchange program with AFS.