When I was learning Portuguese and living in Mozambique, I remember how I spent a huge amount of time in my room, studying and trying to understand the language´s grammar. It was definately a long time and somehow, I never quite got the confidence to start opening my mouth and speak Portuguese to people I met. It is as if I was waiting for one special day when I would reach THAT level and suddenly open my mouth and the language would pour out effortlessly. That day never came.
Wonders never cease!
A few years ago, I never imagined I would be making a blog promoting the teaching of the Shona language. I have, for many years taken Shona for granted, even though it is my native tongue. It was not until I left Zimbabwe to live, first in Mozambique and later in Sweden, that the Shona language became alive in a unique way to me. It is then that I realized how Shona is an important part of myself and a cultural badge. I fell in love with it and have since then, welcomed any opportunity to teach it and spread it.
English is easily a very popular language spoken and heard in many countries. It is, for most travellers, a safety net, a language they can resort to when communication becomes tough. In some cases, the widespread usage of English even gives some travellers the confidence to journey into foreign lands where the main languages are something other than English. So what does it take to learn English and be good at it? Find out more on this blog as I will be sharing tips and resources on how to make it your English teaching and learning project.
Zaion-Horn of Africa restaurant and bar opens in Umeå
One of the most pleasant ways of opening up to a new culture is by trying its food. Specific dishes , how they are prepared, served and eaten can say a lot about a culture.
A good friend of mine, Mike, originally from Eritrea, has decided to open an Eritrean/Ethiopian restaurant in Umeå. I am very proud of him. Mike is my first friend since I moved to Sweden six years ago, and surprisingly, the only friend I have in a 150km radius. Gosh!, How terrible or rather sad, that must sound. My experince of Sweden has made me believe that making friends is not as easy as I had always found before moving here. I believe that while I generaly regard swedes as very friendly people, being friendly is not the same as being easy to become friends with. More on this in another post, but for now lets celebrate cultural diversity .
The first real snow-fall has come, the clocks have been wound 1 hour backwards and me and my little gang are shifting our routines.
I confess that having grown up in the warmth of Zimbabwe, the cold automatically makes me long to be indoors.
One of the biggest issues under discussion in Europe during the last decade or so is immigration. Questions have been raised regarding what kind of impact the huge numbers of immigrants has had on the social, economical and cultural life of the host countries.
On the other side, questions have equally been raised on how the immigrant´s experience of the host country is like and what the psycho-social implications of immigration are on those who have migrated, as they adjust to the new environment. You will agree that a lot of opinions, facts and what else have been raised on this issue. My Post is about an issue of identity, based on a film I have just watched. The film mostly focuses on the way an immigrant man views himself and his identity in his new environment.
Discussing the weather is one of the easiest ways of starting small talk in Sweden. I learnt. So I will start mine by highlighting how much I love the fall, or autumn. It is a time of colourful shades of red, orange and yellow leaves.
The age we live in is sometimes referred to as the information age. It is likely that there has never been an age in human history before, where so much information about so many things, has been so accessible for individuals. While knowledge has existed among humans throughout time, those who had access to it were few due to different privileges.
In this age, through digital technology, access to information has been made possible to most people.
A few months ago I completed my Masters in Communication for development at Malmö university. A fantastic program, taught by the best in the field and full of interesting and energetic participants, I can say.
The 80´s were a glorious time to be alive for me. They were the years of my childhood. In Zimbabwe there is a term called "ma born free", referring to anyone born after 18 April 1980, the day when Zimbabwe officially attained its independence from 90 years of colonialism under Britain. And now, it seems it is hard to talk about history or the present time in Zimbabwe, without risking being accused of "talking politics". My focus is not on the politics of this period, but is instead a chance to talk about my simple experiences during that historical epoch from my childhood. I wonder if it is possible at all to talk about the glorious days of my childhood without someone seeing it as a political discussion. I will try that here and see how far I go before my post becomes stained with politics.
I am Santino Zhakata, born in Zimbabwe, living in Sweden. I do a lot of writing, photography , blogging and website creation for fun and for profit. My fields of expertise include teaching and tutoring English via distance or face to face. I also specialise in communication for development. Welcome to my blog, feel free to share your thoughts.