четверг, 30 апреля 2015 г.


Medvezhyegorsk is a town and the administrative center of Medvezhyegorsky District of the Republic of Karelia, Russia, with population of 15,533citizens.

A village in this location had existed since the 17th century. Between 1703–1710 and 1766–1769, a factory was operating in the village. Town status was granted to it in 1916, when it was known as Medvezhya Gora. The current name was given to it in 1938. During World War II, the town was occupied by the Finnish Army from 6 December 1941 to 23 June 1944.

Administrative and municipal status
Within the framework of administrative divisions, Medvezhyegorsk serves as the administrative center of Medvezhyegorsky District, to which it is directly subordinated.As a municipal division, the town of Medvezhyegorsk, together with three rural localities, is incorporated within Medvezhyegorsky Municipal District as Medvezhyegorskoye Urban Settlement.


 Medvezhyegorsk is on the Murmansk railway south of the White Sea, and at the north end of Lake Onega. The White Sea–Baltic Canal passes by it.

Exciting rafting in Karelia!

Rafting is a recreational outdoor activities which use an inflatable raft to navigate a river or other body of water. This is often done on whitewater or different degrees of rough water, and generally represents a new and challenging environment for participants. Enjoy Russian language school students are offered to go rafting during there summer courses in Petrozavodsk. There are more than 26 thousands of rivers in Karelia – there are enough for everyone! Be sure that will become unforgettable experience and what a great practice of extreme Russian speaking!

среда, 29 апреля 2015 г.

12 useful tips on surviving in Russian family here

Learning foreign language through immersion is very efficient. At the same time it can become a real challenge. Students of Enjoy Russian language school stay with local host families. We carefully select all our families. After that they take part in the training program. But secret of warm and pleasant communication is that both sides should be prepared for host living. We present 12 useful tips on surviving in Russian family. We hope your experience will be enjoyable.

1. Remember the famous Scouts’ motto – Be prepared.
Your host family is bound to be interested in you and your life. So why not bring along several postcards from your native country or some pictures of your family? This would make a great starting point for conversation., as you can describe the people in the photos and the places in which they were taken. Try to avoid short answers (да or нет) and instead try to develop your answers to make the conversation more interesting.

2. Don't forget that communication is a two-way thing.
If you want your host family to communicate with you more, don’t be shy –you take the first step! All it takes is telling them about your day. Even discussing your lunch menu may become a fascinating topic for conversation.

3. Keep asking questions.
Members of your host family will be glad to answer your questions about their life, customs, and traditions. Why not ask them how long they have lived in Petrozavodsk, whether they have any relatives nearby etc. Do they visit any clubs? Do they have any hobbies? Inquire about the city’s history. Try reading a local newspaper and discuss what you find out with your hosts.

4. Stay with the host family after dinner.
In some Russian families it is custom to stay together in the sitting room after dinner to drink tea, watch the news or discuss the day’s events. Don't feel afraid to sit with your hosts!

5. Offer to help with the housework.
Your host family will appreciate your help in laying the table or washing up. At the same time it’s a good chance to practise your Russian and to pick up new, useful words.

6. Share your food preferences.
Speak about which kind of foods you like and don't like, and be sure to let your host know that you enjoy their cooking, they'll appreciate the compliment! Your host will need to know what you like to eat and whether there are any foods you are allergic to. If you enjoy cooking, why not treat your hosts to a dish from your host company?

7. Respect the house rules.
Be sure that you know about any house rules and procedures there may be how, such as how to lock the door if you come back late at night, where you should leave your washing, whether you are allowed to use your hosts' computer etc. If you have any doubts or you think that you haven't understood something, don't keep silent. Ask for help!

8. Be ready for children’s curiosity.
Little children often get quite excited when they meet new people and are very curious about their things! It's probably best to keep all of your valuables away from young children. Inform your hosts if the children keep going in your room but try to be patient and tolerant – it is hard to explain to little children that your room is no longer there territory.

9. Try not to spend all of your free time with your host family.
Your host family understands that you meet a lot of new friends during  your stay in Petrozavodsk and will not be offended if you wish to spend your free time with them, and there is nothing stopping you from going out in the evenings.However, your host family is there to take care of you, so please let them know if you will not be having dinner at home or will be spending the night somewhere else.

10. Remember - Your host family is still a family.
Please do not feel rejected if your host family wants to spend weekends without you. Try to use your free time to relax at home or visit your new friends.

11. Go Shopping.
Do not be afraid of asking your host family to take you with them when going shopping. It will be great practice for you and the family will appreciate your help with carrying the bags.

12. Tell them about any problems.
If you have any problems, don't keep them to yourself. Discuss them with your host family. Alos, don't forget to inform the school administration about any trouble or worries you have. 

вторник, 28 апреля 2015 г.

I met very interesting and nice people here and they will stay in my mind forever - Anabela Crepulja

One more student has finished her spring Russian language courses in Petrozavodsk, Karelia. We are happy to have opportunity to meet Anabela and will wait to see her here again. Inspire and join our team here!!

Anabela Crepulja, Austria

It was good to get in touch with the “prostorechie” and the everyday-language in the course. Grammar lessons were also very helpful. Learning individually was a new experience for me and helped me to make progress, especially in speaking. The teaching material were good, especially the materials on phrases which helped me a lot to learn more about and to be able to understand the modern Russian. As well the materials on grammar which I needed to repeat. Additionally we red interesting literary texts of different foreign and Russian writers that I enjoyed a lot due to the great selection of the teacher. My room and bed at host family were commodious and I spent a lot of time at home. My host family became like a family to me. We spent lots of evenings together. The breakfast was always a surprise but every time delicious, and if I had remarks (which defiantly was not often the case) it was fully respected. There was also enough room for privacy and we all got along just fine! I met very interesting and nice people here and they will stay in my mind forever. I enjoyed a lot the excursion to the Museum of Fine Arts. The National Museum was outstanding as well – you can loose yourself for days there. Also there is possibility to go to the theatre and other exhibitions is you are not too busy sitting in one of the various cafes and pubs. 

Inspiring Karelia

Karelia, the Land of a thousand lakes is a magnificent place to visit. You will find unforgettable views of natural beauty and places of historic importance. White nights, fresh air and friendly people – come here and explore the lifestyle of Karelian citizens. Studying at Enjoy Russian language school allows you to learn Russian through immersion. You will stay with one of the local host families and will be able to have everyday speaking practice. Live brightly and be inspired!! 

Marble quarry Ruskeala

Dormition Church of Kondopoga

The Solovetsky Islands

Embankment of Petrozavodsk

Alexander-Svirsky Monastery

The Lake of Ladoga

Kizhi island

One of the 26 thousands of Karelian rivers

Vottovaara Hill 

Mill on the Onego Lake

Waterfall Kivach

Valaam Island

понедельник, 27 апреля 2015 г.


Sortavala is a small city on the northern shore of Europe's largest lake, Ladoga, in the Republic of Karelia, Russia. The city with population of 19,235 citizens was founded by the Swedish in 1643 on an idyllic location on the shore of the Vakkolahti bay. The surrounding coastal area with its islands is known for its magnificent natural scenery and unique flora and fauna. The famous Valamo monastery can be found mere 40 kilometers south of Sortavala.


The district of Sortavala was first recorded in Swedish documents dating to 1468. Russian documents first mention it as Serdovol or Serdobol in 1500. It is disputed which name was the earliest. The settlement of Sortavala was attested in 1582. It was ceded to Sweden after the Ingrian War; the modern town seems to have been founded in 1632.

With the 1721 Treaty of Nystad, the settlement was joined to Russia along with the rest of Old Finland and was given the Russian name Serdobol. It became known for its marble and granite quarries which provided materials necessary for construction of imperial palaces in St. Petersburg and its neighborhood. In 1812, along with the rest of Viipuri Province, it was joined to the newly formed Grand Duchy of Finland.

In 1917, the town remained a part of independent Finland. It suffered extensively from mass Soviet bombardment during the Winter War, and through the Moscow Peace Treaty Finland was forced to cede the town to the Soviet Union. All of the population of the town was evacuated for the first time. Like the rest of Finnish Karelia, Sortavala was retaken by Finland during 1941–1944 (the period of the Continuation War) and most evacuees returned to rebuild their homes. However, after the armistice of 1944, the Finns were evacuated again and the town was ceded back empty of population. After the war, the town was resettled by the Slavic population.

Until 1940, the Ladoga shore southwest of Sortavala had been one of the very few relatively densely populated areas north of the Karelian Isthmus populated by Karelians.

Administrative and municipal status
Within the framework of administrative divisions, it is, together with two urban-type settlements and forty-seven rural localities, incorporated as the town of republic significance of Sortavala—an administrative unit with the status equal to that of the districts.As a municipal division, the town of republic significance of Sortavala is incorporated as Sortavalsky Municipal District; the town of Sortavala and ten rural localities are incorporated within it as Sortavalskoye Urban Settlement. The remaining urban-type settlements and rural localities are incorporated within the municipal district into two urban settlements and two rural settlements.

Sortavala is a railway station on the Khiytola-Matkaselkä railway. You can as well get here by car or by bus. There is o airport in Sortavala.

Urban development enterprise - Karelian Industrial Complex. It is a fish processing plant and manufacturer of surimi, crab sticks and minced fish. Karelian Industrial Complex is the only manufacturer of surimi in Russia. Before 2006 the plant was called the Sortavalsky Fish Factory. The biggest fish processing plant in the region. Karelian Industrial Complex has more than 1000 employees. The plant is included in the list of socially important enterprises of the Republic of Karelia.

Nature and climate peculiarities

The nature of Sortavalsky region is unique. Numerous narrow bays, capes, islands and granite cliffs give this place a very picturesque character. No wonder this territory is called "Karelian Switzerland". The current landscape of the territory has been created during the whole geological history of the Baltic crystalline shield. The rocks that form it are mainly of granite and mica shales. The use of the building rock of Priladozhje started in XVIII century at the construction of St.Petersburg.

Marble and granites of Piladozhje decorate architectural masterpieces and bridges of Russian northern capital. On the shores of the northern part of Ladoga and on its islands there are lots of old stone breaking.

Climatic zone of Sortavalsky region is considered to be the most smooth. The plants of the territory are pines, fir-tres, birches and rowan-trees. The unique plantations, which are growing on Valaam, in the arboretum of Sortavala city and in Sortavala botanic reserve, are especially interesting. More than 250 plant species, including elm, linden, maple and old birch, are registered on the territory of the botanic reserve. Old arboretum, which was founded in the beginning of XX century by Dr. Vinter, is also on the territory of the reserve. Its collection consists of 76 species of acclimatized foreign plants, including 20 rare species.

Fifty eight fish species inhabit the waters of the Ladoga lake. The most valuable are salmon species. The unique species of freshwater pinnipedia – Ladoga seal – also lives in the lake.

пятница, 24 апреля 2015 г.


Kostomuksha is a town in the northwest of the Republic of Karelia, Russia, located 30 kilometers (19 mi) from the border with Finland, on the shore of Lake Kontoki. Population: 28,436(2010 Census).

It was established in 1977 as an urban-type settlement and populated by people from various regions of the Soviet Union

It was mostly built by Finnish building companies, according to an agreement between the Soviet and Finnish governments. Town status was granted to it in 1983. The town was later expanded by Soviet building companies but maintaining plenty of green areas.

 Administrative and municipal status
Within the framework of administrative divisions, it is, together with six rural localities, incorporated as the town of republic significance of Kostomuksha—an administrative unit with the status equal to that of the districts.As a municipal division, the town of republic significance of Kostomuksha is incorporated as Kostomukshsky Urban Okrug.

The iron ore refinery (JSC Karelsky okatysh, or Karelian Pellet) operates the Kostomuksha mine and employs approximately five thousand people and associated mining has left a huge hole near the factory. Wiring harness ("AEK" LLC) and electronics ("Electrokos" LLC) factories are part of Finnish company PKC Group Oyj. Other important industries include timber and furniture making. A wood processing complex being developed by Swedwood (an industrial group within IKEA) will include a sawmill, chip-board and furniture factory.

There is a large national park near the town with a reindeer population and a beaver population of Canadian origin, which were introduced in Finland and have migrated over into Russian territory. Part of the national park extends into Finnish territory. Tourism and recreational activities within the national park are prohibited.

Culture and recreation

Every summer there is a chamber music festival to which musicians, orchestras and theater groups come from Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other parts of Russia. In summer, the town enjoys more than two months of uninterrupted sunlight and many inhabitants spend time at their dachas, typically situated on the banks of one of the many lakes in the vicinity, which also attract anglers due to their large fish populations. As in Finland, saunas are very popular. In winter, skiing and biathlon are popular. Most visitors come from Finland.

четверг, 23 апреля 2015 г.

Three pieces of advice on learning Russian by our teacher Olga Eliseeva!

Russian language school “Enjoy Russian” teachers are always ready to give you a piece of advice on ways of studying Russian. Olga Eliseeva has been working in our school for several years already. She is an inspired tutor who considers teaching as creative process. Here are her three pieces of advice on learning Russian!

Make friends with a Russian (it may be a pen or e-mail friend)
Find  a friendly Russian at your university or neighborhood. You can as well try to find people ready to help you learn Russian and in return, teach them your mother tongue. Then, you can either practice online (private messages or chat room) or offline during tandem sessions or language exchange meetings. You can discuss any topic you like and practice free and at the time which is suitable for you.

Learn Russian through immersion
Learning Russian through immersion, you learn to let your fears go. You have to speak the language, or else you suffer isolation. Soon you become less afraid of making mistakes, you open yourself to conversation. At the same time you become acquainted with the way Russian is spoken in “real life”. And you learn aspects of language that cannot be replicated in a classroom. You learn much more about the pronunciation and the intonation.

Read books with marked stress position
All vowels in Russian may have up to three different possible pronunciations depending on their position in relation to the stressed syllable. However, once you know where to put the stress, you also know how to pronounce the word properly. For that reason, there are students’ textbooks with texts written with an additional acute accent above vowels to denote stress.