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Learning A Language (Italian)  
User currently offlineBA757 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 2832 posts, RR: 14
Posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 1341 times:

I am after some advice on learning a foreign language – Italian.

I have invested in an audio course by Michael Thomas (which was £80) as he generally seems to be recommended for his ability to easily teach the basics of a language. This CD is great, but I am only picking up parts of the language.

Has anyone got any good tips on how to learn any language, or Italian specifically?

I have heard that if you listen to an audio CD as you are going to sleep at night, it will help memorise the language, but I am yet to try this technique.

If anyone could provide me with some advice or help in learning foreign languages I would much appreciate it.
I am also thinking about looking at a basic text book to supplement this audio course, would anyone have any recommendations?

Many thanks
Adam


14 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAlcregular From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 1324 times:

I've heard that if you listen to it as your falling asleep works. I borrowed the Spanish CD's from work, but it didn't help me. The best thing is to enrol in an evening class at your local college (which is free) and they normally do a 10 week course, then step up a level the next term. There were so many people wanting to continue on our Spanish course (lots of groups broken down into groups of 15 or so), they extended it for another 10 weeks. college teach you the basics, and I found it really helpful. We played bingo in spanish and that really helped us remembering our numbers. Good luck!

User currently offlineBananaboy From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2004, 1585 posts, RR: 22
Reply 2, posted (9 years 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 1287 times:

I studied Italian for 7 years all the way up to A-Level.. you really have chosen the most beautiful language in the world to learn.

Some more good news for you... I imagine Italian to be one of the easiest, for several reasons.

The pronunciation is entirely phonetic.. once you know the rules, you are away.

It's incredibly easy to speak.. it will roll off of your tongue in no time.

There are thousands of words that in Italian require you to only add an "o" or an "a" onto the English form to make a translation. If in doubt, guess!

My teacher, although I disliked her for it, used to really drum it into us. We had vocabulary sheets which we had to learn 200 words a week from, as well as 25 new verbs (which are also easy to learn... 3 different endings -ire, -are-, -ere, and the reflexive verbs, plus about 25 or so irregular verbs) every week. I really hated her, but to be honest, I soon began to see the benefits. It was boring, and you don't need that when you are learning a language for fun, but when you can begin to see the results, it is such an ego boost.

One tip is to really immerse yourself in the language as much as possible. Buy an Italian newspaper once a week.. you sort of know what is in the news and then start to break down the articles.. highlight new words etc. If you have satellite TV, ask them about providing feed from an Italian channel.. we used to get it for about £3 a month.

THe sleeping thing I don't know about. I can imagine the headphones irritating me. The evening course sounds like a great idea.. the classroom is such a good place to build your language skills as you will have someone to try and hold a conversation with.. maybe only basic stuff to start with, but it will get better. Soon you will be discussing in depth subjects like "Il turismo di massa," "La condizione degli anziani," "I rischi del fumo" or even "La Droga."


On a side note, I also studied French for the same period, but had teachers whose methods differed greatly. 8 years on after leaving school, I can still class myself as pretty fluent in Italian, and survived a year abroad speaking Italian with locals, yet I can barely remember how to order a sandwich in French. Grazie Signora Greaves.  Wink/being sarcastic

I wish you all the best with it.

Buona fortuna

Mark



All my life, I've been kissing, your top lip 'cause your bottom one's missing
User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 3, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1219 times:

Easiest is living in the country itself.
Personally I learnt Italian by reading Auto Oggi and Topolino.
And yes, by also living two years in PG.

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offline707CMF From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 4, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1218 times:

I guess the easiest way would be to date an Italian lady.

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 5, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1215 times:

True, I forgot I that fact. That was the reason I came to live in Italy in the first place  Smile

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineXJRamper From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2471 posts, RR: 51
Reply 6, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1212 times:

Another good way to learn the language is to read Itialian newspapers, articles, anything written in Itialian or Spanish. These two languages go hand in hand. Once I learned Spanish, Italian came relatively easy. Once you translate your articles in some sort of translation software, I would recommend BabbelFish for that, you start to notice and pick up key words. It helped me...maybe it will help you.

XJR



Look ma' no hands!
User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 7, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1186 times:

Another good idea is to find a cute Italian exchange student and set up some king of language conversation exchange  Big thumbs up

UTA



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineThom@s From Norway, joined Oct 2000, 11953 posts, RR: 46
Reply 8, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1186 times:

I know some Italian swearing if you'd like to learn it...  Smile

Always comes in handy at one time or another...

Thom@s



"If guns don't kill people, people kill people - does that mean toasters don't toast toast, toast toast toast?"
User currently offline707CMF From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 9, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1184 times:

Lol, I used some Italian swearing when I worked with Italians.

But then again, isn't their wine (Asti) a swearing in itself ?

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineThom@s From Norway, joined Oct 2000, 11953 posts, RR: 46
Reply 10, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1182 times:

Don't know that one...  Smile I know the classics like "son of a she-dog" and "piece of poop" lines, if you know what i mean...

Thom@s



"If guns don't kill people, people kill people - does that mean toasters don't toast toast, toast toast toast?"
User currently offline707CMF From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 11, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1180 times:

Well, the "piece of poop" being very close to the French equivalent, I had no problem with that one.

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineSaxdiva From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2382 posts, RR: 42
Reply 12, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1179 times:

BA757:

I've just started the same thing. I picked up software by "Instant Immersion," which has both computer and audio CDs. So far I've only used the audio and only for a couple of days, but I've picked up a number of words.

I may start labeling things around the house soon, though--I'm under a deadline.


User currently offline707CMF From France, joined Mar 2002, 4885 posts, RR: 29
Reply 13, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 1177 times:

I am trying to start again to learn a language (German in my case). I already have some basics, but I am looking for a way of improving it.

Cheers,

707


User currently offlineBA757 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2003, 2832 posts, RR: 14
Reply 14, posted (9 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 1164 times:

Hi All,

Thanks to all of you for your advice.

As a couple of you mentioned, and this been something I had not thought of, the buying an Italian newspaper idea seems like a good thing to do. I will definitely be trying that.

The best thing is to enrol in an evening class at your local college (which is free)

unfortunately not the case with our local college, they do not do Italian. Our university do evening classes in it, however they are not free (around £250).

Easiest is living in the country itself.

I will be doing...  Smile

I've just started the same thing. I picked up software by "Instant Immersion," which has both computer and audio CDs. So far I've only used the audio and only for a couple of days, but I've picked up a number of words.

I may start labeling things around the house soon, though--I'm under a deadline.


I am also under a deadline somewhat, I need to learn as much Italian as possible in 4/5 months.

Once again thanks to all of you who have give me tips - they are much appreicated!

Adam

(I also quite like the idea of finding a cute Italian exchange student - genius idea!  Smile)


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