Finnish for busy people

Finnish for Beginners: Lesson Plan Suggestions

So many people are asking for lesson plans. What should they learn first? Where to start? I can understand being overwhelmed by all the information on my website. However, this site was never meant to be a “Finnish for beginners” course; it’s more of a reference material.

That said, I decided to give in to the pressure and at least offer learners some idea of how to combine Finnish vocabulary and grammar in order to produce sentences. After all, there is little point to just learn word lists if you can’t put them into sentences. And likewise, mastering a grammar subject without having any vocabulary to work with isn’t productive either. So here are some Finnish for beginners lesson plan suggestions.

Finnish for Beginners

Below, you can find links to some lesson plans I have put together around a certain vocabulary topic. Don’t expect to find exercises or detailed explanations. It is your job to combine the information on each page.

You can read more about the beginner level A1 here.

1. Family members

Clicking the title of this topic will help you learn how to talk about your family in simple sentences. Try your hand at explaining what kind of people your relatives are.

2. Rooms and Furniture

Click through to learn to describe your home through explanation what furniture and rooms you have. Learn to describe the location of furniture both in rooms and in relation to each other.

3. Clothes

This link leads to a page which will help you learn how to explain what type of clothing items you have, as well as how to describe their color.

4. Daily Routines

Once you know some basic verbs and have an idea of how verbs are conjugated in Finnish, you can start describing your day to people. You can make it even more interesting by adding information about the clock to these sentences.

5. Body Parts

With body part vocabulary, you can start talking about what someone looks like, and then expand this to talking about illnesses and phrases to use at the doctor. Combine that with the theory on the imperative and you’re well on your way to speak Finnish!

6. In the City

After you’ve learned the names of some places in the city, you can start practicing how to say you are in a place, go to that place or return from that place. Being able to describe where you are going will give you the feeling that you’re really starting to move your Finnish along.


What will you be able to say first? (A1.1-A1.3)

Your first goals when learning a language should focus on the following things.

  • You need to learn enough basic vocabulary to be able to name concrete everyday objects (e.g. walk around your house and name the furniture, open your fridge and name the foods).
  • You should learn to answer basic questions, such as where you’re from, what language you speak, how old you are and where you live. In the beginning, it’s enough to be able to answer these questions, later you need to be able to list these things without prompting.
  • Your language will still be more focused on listing items rather than having real conversations (e.g. Minulla on olohuone, makuuhuone, keittiö ja kylpyhuone. Minulla on kaksi siskoa ja veli. Minulla on isä ja äiti.). Expressing your opinions can be too tricky at this level.
  • You should slowly start to be able to interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help. At this point, you won’t be able to talk in more than simple sentences. You will need prompting and lots of help from the other person.
  • You should slowly become able to talk about concrete things that are closely related to you and your life, for example what kind of a family you have, and what things you have at home. (e.g. Minä olen Inge. Minä olen kotoisin Belgiasta. Minä puhun englantia ja vähän suomea. Minulla on yksi sisko ja yksi veli. Minun perhe asuu Belgiassa. Minä asun Tampereella. Tampere on kaunis kaupunki. Minulla on nopea tietokone, mutta minulla ei ole televisiota.)
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