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Record numbers take part in Native Language Day e-dictation test

Professor Reili Argus reading the text of a dictation test on Native Language Day at Tallinn University. March 14, 2013.
Professor Reili Argus reading the text of a dictation test on Native Language Day at Tallinn University. March 14, 2013. Source: (Toomas Huik/Postimees/Scanpix)

Over 29,000 people have taken part in the Vikerraadio-broadcast e-dictation test over the past ten years, 5,881 of which participated this year, setting a new record.

In all, 37 flawless submissions were received this year. The winners of the dictation test, who submitted the most accurate responses the most quickly, are as follows:

• Tiina Mahler-Jaaniste, philologist category, overall winner

• Liisa-Andra Lohu, adult category

• Elo Maria Pauman (Hugo Treffner High School), student category

• Tereza Špongolts, non-native category

• Aivar Paidla, diaspora category

• Riina Tobias, inaugural smart device category


"The main focus of this year’s text was on adapted words which can be written in two different ways, and for the most part they were written correctly — for example "tšilli" [chili], "pitsa" [pizza] or "kikkpoksija" [kickboxer]," explained Postimees language editor Maris Jõks, one of the authors of the text of this year’s dictation. "This was a pleasant surprise."

"The results were as expected," said Institute of the Estonian Language (EKI) Senior Language Planner Peeter Päll, who added that it was nice to see people getting involved, but noticed some mistakes resulting from overeagerness. "People overthink and add too many punctuation marks, for example. But it was great to see that we had so many participants on smart devices."

Text of the 2017 e-dictation test

Piki tänavaid kooli poole rulluisutava Liisa, 8.b klassi parima kikkpoksija kuularites tümpsub „Mets neidude vahel“, laul, mida ta esitab lastekooriga juulikuus noorte laulu- ja tantsupeol „Mina jään”. Olgugi et rekajuht Hane tee ja Kuke allee ristmikul sebra ees kinni peab, seisatab tüdrukki korraks. Osavalt trikirattal siksakitades vurab mööda klassivend Juhan, kelle tohutu suures plüüsist kotis on peale akutrelli, tušipoti ja huulepalsami mitu viilu tšillikastmega pitsat. „Oota, Juhan!” hõikab Liisa talle järele.

The annual e-dictation test, which was held in honor of Native Language Day for the tenth year in a row, was organized by Vikerraadio, the Association of Estonian Language Teachers and the Institute of the Estonian Language.

This year’s prizes, which include a grand prize of a tablet computer, Rahva Raamat bookstore gift cards for category winners as well as a consolation prize to be awarded by drawing, were sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Research and Rahva Raamat.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

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