Heritage Language Programs - Swedish

Trollbacken Swedish Camp

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Address: 4114 Southwest 48th Place, Portland, OR 07221

Telephone: (503) 284-2415

Web address: http://www.trollbacken.org

Contact person

Name: Tina Kreft-Tenglbad

Title: Director

Email: director@trollbacken.org; kreftusa4@usa.com

Telephone: (503) 296-4884

Languages/dialects taught: Swedish

Grades taught: Students involved in the program are ages 7-13.

Program Description

Purposes and goals of the program: Trollbacken Summer Camp aims to provide children of the Pacific Northwest with a one-week adventure learning the Swedish language and delving into aspects of Swedish culture with a variety of activities.

Type of program: 1-week summer camp

Program origin: The program started when several mothers began gathering together with their children. Eventually it outgrew the first campus and has now reached an average of 55-70 students.


Parents’ expectations for the program: Parents have varying expectations for the language instruction, primarily related to the language variety that is taught.


Students: 55-70 Students

How the program identifies heritage speakers: The program allows for the students to self-identify or family-identify as heritage speakers. Students' levels range from having no experience in Swedish to being bilingual.

Possible reasons for student withdrawal: There is usually no withdrawal. Every student completes the program, and about 80% of the students return the following year.

Students’ expectations of the program: Students expect to learn about Swedish language and culture while having fun and making new friends.


Number of instructors in the program: 7 instructors and 17 counselors

Languages in which instructors are proficient: Swedish

Proficiency level: Native speakers

Credentials: A majority of the instructors have teaching degrees.

Professional development opportunities instructors have: Three of the instructors are full-time teachers and receive development opportunities through their other jobs.


Total contact hours per week: 12.5 hours for one week

Student grouping: Students are divided by age (7-9 and 10-13) and then placed into four groups determined by proficiency level.

Language skills

Skills developed by the program: Language skills


Aspects of culture taught: Music, singing, arts and crafts, folk dancing, campfire story telling, Swedish food, swimming, hiking, soccer, volleyball

Kind of student identity program fosters: A Swedish-American identity is fostered, emphasizing the differences and similarities between the two cultures.


Methodologies and instructional strategies used in the program: Interactive instructional strategies are used, and students are involved in many fun activities during the program.


Technology used for instruction: Technology is not used during the camp.


Assessments used to evaluate students’ progress: Students are assessed the entire time, but there are no official tests.

What the program has in place

Financial support the program receives: 75% of the support received is in the form of tuition.

Other support the program receives: The other 25% of financial support is received from donations from Swedish lodges.

Assistance or funding the program would like to receive: The program needs continual funding instead of one-time funding for specific projects.

How students graduate and/or how they receive credit: Students receive recognition for their service and have the extra-curricular experience, but there is no credit for the language courses.

Program research or evaluation: The program is semi-formally evaluated.

Special challenges

Challenges the program has experienced: The biggest challenge is sufficient and dependable sources of funding.

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