Swedish for Parents

Language for life with a young family in Sweden

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Welcome to parenthood in Sweden. Bring coffee.

Combining easy-to-access information with ready-to-use language content, this book has been created with the multitasking parent in mind — whatever your parenting style or background.

Swedish for Parents won’t help you manage sleepless nights or the tears and tantrums, but it will equip you with a wealth of practical knowledge to help you settle into Swedish life as an international parent.

  • Understand the Swedish system of anything from preschool and healthcare to traditions and parties, winter clothing and typical Swedish concepts such as välling, åkpåse and pyssel.
  • Learn child-related language through illustrated guides, 500 searchable keywords and language exercises.
  • Use Swedish to talk to other parents, with ready-to-use phrases, small-talk guides and advice on language learning.
  • Feel like you belong through reading shared stories, perspectives and insider tips from other international families.
  • Take the opportunity to establish a support network and build a life in your new community.

Press coverage

Swedish for Parents as reported in the journal SFI-lärartidningen, for teachers working with Swedish for immigrants.

Sarah Campbell was interviewed on SVT (no longer available online).

Sarah Campbell

Sarah Campbell is a British-born linguist and writer with two young children, living and working in Uppsala since 2014.

A qualified languages teacher for over fifteen years, Sarah has taught across Europe and in India and has produced award-winning teaching materials in global communications. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Curriculum Studies at Uppsala University, where her research is into language, multilingualism and identity construction amongst international families in Sweden.

Illustrated by Cibele Guimarães

About the illustrator

Cibele Guimarães is an architect educated in Brazil and Europe, with a bachelor’s degree in architecture and urban planning (2010) and a Master Degree Erasmus Mundus in urban studies. Before settling in Sweden, she has lived and studied in France, Portugal and Spain. Cibele is a self-taught illustrator and she keeps pursuing to improve her skills within the field.


Al Pitcher

Father of two Al Pitcher is an award-winning stand-up comedian. Having grown up in New Zealand, Al moved to Stockholm in 2010 and entertains audiences worldwide with his wry and humorous take on life and language in his beloved adopted homeland, Sweden.

Kreativa Karin (Andersson)

Known from TV shows and her DIY books, for example Kreativa Karins pyssel året runt, Kreativa Karin is arguably Sweden’s front figure in the national art of pyssel, arts and crafts. In this book, Karin tells of the role of arts and crafts in Swedish children’s everyday life and culture.

Extra material

Embrace Sweden with kids – Sarah’s blog

Starting school in Sweden: Abba, school uniforms and plurilingual superheroes

It's time If you are feeling even the tiniest bit emotional about your child starting school in Sweden, I recommend that you do not listen to Abba's weep-along smash hit Slipping Through My Fingers. However, if you do feel tempted to press play and have a little cry...

Embrace the silliness of Swedish Midsummer | Family Life in Sweden

You've been in Sweden with your family for a while now. You've read the books on Swedish culture, and you think you're getting to grips with how things work here.... Don't draw too much attention to oneself. Avoid chit chat with people you don't know. Don't go over...