21 August 2014

How to make studying easier

21 August 2014
I've been starting to question the accuracy of some longer words in Finnish - my native language! - such as harvinainen (=rare) and näyteikkuna (=display window) 

I guess that is what long summer holidays and a sudden start of school do to you. Or the fact that you haven't been writing long texts in any other languages than English. Or maybe you've just got too much on your mind. Whoops. At the moment, my timetable is just about full of languages which means that I actually have over 10 hours of English every week and some hours of Spanish and French. But what about the subject that is not a language? Well, the odd one out is psychology. Which I truly, immensely adore, but for some reason, there has now been a slight decrease in my motivation towards the whole subject. And actually, I wouldn't necessarily talk of a slight decrease... All the famous psychologists and their theories, and especially putting their theories into practice by writing long essays with clarifying examples, which are full of scientific vocabulary, make me feel tired and hopeless. Blurgh. I'm just fed up with it.

Since the frightening fact is that autumn's matriculation examination is getting closer day by day, I thought I would try to explain how I approach problems in psychology and English on a daily/weekly basis. It's great to know different kinds of learning techniques, as it has been scientifically proven that students with multiple study techniques gain better grades, in general. (ironically, remember this from a psychology lesson!) This image sums up how I study the big pictures. It's also what I tell some of my friends to do when they are having a hard time with maths. (disclaimer: I'm no mathemagician; I don't even study advanced maths at school) I think this graph works pretty well for any subject. And hey, even though some of you might be thinking "no way, not those lists again!" I only have to say that rational thinking is in each and every one of us, but when it comes to important exams, a lot of us feel stressed out and forget to slow down and just think about the situation.

Of course there are other crucial things such as eating, sleeping, friends, exercise etc, and I have to confess: sleeping and exercising could be a lot better for my part, but I don't feel like listing the obvious points. Also you should find your own learning techniques (I spoke about fun ways to learn languages in this post), realise when you're too tired to study, have breaks and even drink some water while your studying. You know what? I've just realised I feel too tired to write any more text, so I'll have to get going now. Oh, and no worries, I do have a life besides all this studying. At least I think I do.

15 August 2014

Trip to Tallinn Day 3

15 August 2014

We still had time to do lots on the last day after checking out of our hostel at noon. Our plan was to roam markets and then visit either Patarei prison or the Bastion tunnels near Kiek in de Kök which we had visited the day before. But first, on our way to a Russian market, we came across this offbeat shop which had the most peculiar old items from the Second World War. Because photographing inside the shop was only allowed after paying one euro, I just settled for a photo taken from outside. And I think this was just foretaste of what we were going to see at the Russian market.

Finally we got to the Russian market which is located next to Tallinn's railway station. You could literally get anything in the whole wide world - at least that's what it felt like. I was close to buying some cute relaxed fit joggers but because you can't really be sure about the sizes, I left them hanging on their place. We saw vegetables, other groceries, underwear, clothes, toys, books, gravestones... I really wonder who would buy a gravestone in a crowded market - which, obviously, isn't something you can just pop into your pocket - after losing a loved one. I guess it takes all sorts... Since there wasn't enough people willing to see a barren prison (guided tours are only for groups consisting of 5 and up), we decided to head to the tunnels later on.

 Oh well! We didn't make to the tunnels as we got too distracted by this park and its flowers. I couldn't help but wonder how well the plants were taken care of but luckily I had a wise friend you was in the know that there was a flower festival in Tallinn at the very moment. So apparently we've been to a flower festival too! The whole area was filled with colourful flowers (what a surprise, huh), buzzing bees and quirky still lifes with statues including zombie-like figures and animals. Then we really had to get going to the tunnels and - mind you - it wasn't even all that easy because of the heat. Luckily, it would be cool in over there.

9 August 2014

Trip to Tallinn Day 2

9 August 2014

Our first destination on the second day was Pirita. It's a neighbourhood 10 kilometres away from the centre of Tallinn so we had to take a bus to get to Pirita beach. The heat was unbearable, once again, so we bought some nice icecream, which, of course, started to melt straight away, and walked around in the sea since the water was very low. Even after walking metres away from the shore, it was only up to my knees.

After that we walked through a nice little forest well, an area full of trees towards the toilets and shower. We then had to go to the TV tower, which is pretty near to the beach, but it said on our map that it's closed on Tuesdays. I still don't know whether that was true or not, but we decided to go back to the centre.When I rummaged in my wallet for bus money, I realized these 20 cent coins from six different countries. So cool, I just had to capture them! By the way, one student ticket cost 80 cents in Tallinn, which is one quarter of the ticket price in Kuopio. Wow. My Estonian friend told me that the bus is even free for the residents of Tallinn. How awesome is that?

Next we did a bit of shopping at the Rotermann, which has a nice mixture of modern and old buildings. It has to be my favourite shopping area in Tallinn! This time I left empty-handed but at least my wallet wasn't complaining. Haha. We had to check out this renowned pancake house called Kompressor in the Old Town. And I have to admit, those pancakes were delicious! I myself had the feta pancake with smoked chicken and it was such massive a portion I couldn't even finish it! I would've wanted to try the sweet pancakes, but they had to wait as my - just like no one else's - stomach is unbounded. It would be so cool if that weren't the case. I mean, at least when abroad it would be great to taste as many dishes as possible! Did I mention these babies only cost about four euros? Almost too good to be true.

After eating our pancakes, we headed full and satisfied to a tower museum Kiek in de Kök. It basically tells about the Second World War including bombing, plague, weapons and digging the secret tunnels under Tallinn, which still partly remain a mystery. We visited the tunnels on day three, so more of them in the next post.

This five-storey tower didn't have the easiest stairs to climb up.

Museums like this make you think of life today and how much of an impact history has on it. It's weird to think that only thirty years ago Estonia was part of Soviet Union with all the strict regulations... But never mind the past, after the museum it was time to eat (again) so we dined in a pizzeria called Pizza Grande situated in Old Town.

The pizza was the usual, but it was weird how this restaurant had run out of salads and pastas. They had absolutely none of the salads or pasta dishes, even though they had them written on the menu. Doesn't sound very professional... But the pizza was alright. Mine had ham, blue cheese, peach and pineapple in it. Anything with blue cheese is just a 'yes, please' for me! And this last photo is a weird car we came across walking around Old Town. This day was full of seeing new places, walking, eating and just a bit more walking. I had just realised my comfortable flats had officially turned into the shoes from hell. Oh wow. And still one more day to go...

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