Ten ways to help you learn Italian by Vicky Addy

1.You need to know why you are doing it.

It may seem obvious, but if you don’t have a good reason to learn Italian you will be less motivated to achieve your goal. Once you have decided you want to learn Italian you need to do everything possible to use it; read it, speak it and listen to it as often as possible

2. Keep at it!

Once you have decided to dedicate yourself to learning Italian, how to you proceed? What is the best way to do this? Some people opt for studying Italian on a daily basis. You may be thinking “If only I had time!” well a bit of Italian every day could be something as simple as listening to some Italian music while working in the garden or doing some chores! Little but often.

3. Find someone to talk to in Italian

If you are taking a course with someone then great! If not then perhaps you could arrange to meet up for a coffee with one of your fellow students? Or even find an Italian who wants to learn English with whom you can correspond or even chat to over Skype.

4. Keep your interest alive & enjoy yourself!

If you enjoy doing something you tend to do it well. Hopefully you are all enjoying your lessons at The Modern Language School, but these are only once a week with the occasional Italian cinema or conversation class. If you enjoy watching films then there are plenty in our Italian library, if you enjoy reading then why not try some of our “Imparare leggendo” books – two new ones have arrived today! If Apps are your thing then try Duolingo a great App for learning any language. Or if you are perhaps a big scrabble fan why not try the Classic Words App where you can play scrabble in Italian at various levels! I would also recommend watching an old episode of “Reazione a Catena” a fun Italian quiz show (please see the link at the bottom of this blog). Be careful because it can become addictive! Whatever you choose make sure it is something you enjoy!

5. Be a child!

Yes you read it right! The idea behind this is that children tend to learn a language more easily than adults, so why not try to do it their way? For example children tend not to get embarrassed instead they just have a go, they love playing games – a great way to learn Italian! For a child making a mistake is normal, if they don’t know something they simply have not learnt it yet. When learning Italian it is impossible to know it all, accepting this can really help with your progress.

6. Feel comfortable / at ease.

If you have managed to accept that learning Italian through games it great fun and you cannot possibly know everything all the time then hopefully you will start to feel more comfortable. It is my aim to create a comfortable, relaxed learning environment where you can enjoy your Italian but I can’t do it alone. As adults we tend to over analyse and worry too much – try not to.

7. Listen

To learn how to draw first you need to learn how to observe. In the same way, to learn how to speak you need to learn how to listen. It is crucial that you get use to the sounds of Italian, that these sounds become familiar. This will help you to speak Italian without even opening your mouths! I truly believe a great way of doing this is through listening to Italian songs and watching Italian films.

8. Talk to yourselves!

Crazy! No absolutely not. Talking to yourself is a great way to practise what you have been studying in class but also to start to try and think in Italian (please see my last blog for more details https://modernlanguageschool.co.uk/how-can-you-really-start-to-think-in-italian/.htm). Look around the room, pick an object, do you know the name of the object in Italian? Yes/No? If no, describe it. What colour is it? What is it used for? What size is it?

9. Relax

I think the single most important piece of advice is this. If you stress about learning Italian you will simply not learn it as well. I am sure more than one of my students have enjoyed “un bel bicchiere di vino” whilst doing their Italian homework!

10. Join a course!

If you haven’t already done so then why not join an Italian class? Learning Italian alone can be quite a challenge. If you would like to join us here at The Modern Language School the please check out our website www.modernlanguageschool.co.uk or get in touch to find out what we can offer. Remember we accept enrolments throughout the year not just in September.