Italian is one of the most spoken languages in the world, with a whopping 85 million speakers worldwide! Not only is Italian a romance language, it is also the language of music. Did you know many musicians learn Italian!? During the rise of classical music in the Renaissance, Italian composers flooded the music industry with their vernacular.
Why do you want to learn Italian?
Are you planning a trip to the beautiful country and want to learn a few words? Are you interested in becoming a fluent speaker? Or just want something to keep you occupied during lockdown? This guide will give you the greatest ways to learn Italian. I will also explore how the Italian culture will improve your learning experience!
There are countless ways to learn so this can be quite daunting if you’re stuck in the mud with deciding how to start. Don’t worry, I will solve your uncertainties with my advice!
The first step on your Italian journey is passion. Why do you want to learn Italian? Find that reason within you and approach it with enthusiasm and motivation, this will be the fuel that will power you through your learning experience.
Maybe you want change in your life by gaining the knowledge of a second language or you’ve previously been to Italy and you felt immersed within the culture. Pin point the exact reasons why and you will take your first step into the world of learning.
Now that you’ve found your reason why, watch an iconic Italian movie or TV show with subtitles, this will give you the first-hand experience of witnessing how the language is presented and the flow of conversation.
Our previous blog https://www.languagesalive.com/top-5-italian-movies/ explores how watching a movie will help you gain an insight of the personality of the characters as well as the language put into context.
Once you’ve completed this step and have some sort of knowledge of the language, search online for common phrases and sayings. The most beneficial method of learning these phrases are videos; check out our YouTube channel https://www.youtube.com/c/Languagesalive, I share with you, common phrases that are used in everyday conversations and in certain context.
Revision is crucial when learning phrases, get out your pen and paper make note of the spellings of the phrases and listen carefully to the pronunciation. Another way of learning phrases is speaking out loud, it will definitely take a few attempts to master the correct way of pronunciation but practice makes perfect.
A Native Italian Tutor
At this stage you should now have some experience of pronunciation and knowledge of the common phrases. Now this is the trickier part: grammar and vocabulary. There are plenty of sources where you can learn including videos and interactive social media posts.
However, as you’ve gotten to this stage you must be pretty serious about learning Italian; therefore, I recommend searching for an Italian tutor. Finding a passionate tutor is both an investment and wonderful, unique experience for you. A tutor will guide you through all different levels, so even if you’ve never spoken a word of Italian or are at an intermediate level, your tutor will encourage your development with the language.
The Italian language is very broad and can seem difficult for beginners because of the variety of verb endings of masculine and feminine, online videos can help you but a tutor will explain properly how and when to use the endings in different contexts.
Hearing another person explaining it and guiding you will benefit your learning experience, they will inform you when you make a mistake unlike an online video. Being able to have a conversation with someone will give you a massive lead in your languages journey, communication is key.
Moreover, sound is very important in the Italian language, unlike English every letter is pronounced in the word, there are no silent letters. This is why pronunciation is vital with Italian, your tutor will expand on this and make learning this extraordinary language comfortable.
Take a trip to Italy
Once you’ve gathered all this knowledge, pack up your bags and take a trip to Italy!
By visiting Italy, you will become engrossed in the setting, when you’re buying something in a shop why not show off your skills to the shop assistant. In a restaurant? Talk with your waiter and share your knowledge on the local cuisine or ask what the best dish or wine is and why it is popular in the region you’re in.
When you’re in a restaurant or a coffee bar, pay close to the surrounding conversations, can you understand what people are talking about? Listen to my podcast and learn how to order food and drinks in Italian now https://www.languagesalive.com/is-italian-a-good-language-to-learn-for-business/
Obviously if you’re in a city, there will be people from different regions, they will have distinct dialects but I think this would be great practice for you to learn the various accents. Whilst you’re there, explore the mesmerizing history and admire the beauty of the town/city you’re in, this will fill you with a burst of energy for learning the language of such a beautiful country.
Join a tour in Italian and observe how the tour guide describes and embraces the culture around them, this will definitely add to your experience in learning Italian. See what your authentic Italian experience can look like https://www.languagesalive.com/learn-italian-in-italy/
Learn to speak and cook Italian
Take your learning to another level, if you’re passionate about authentic Italian cuisine you can learn to cook these amazing dishes whilst learning the language. If you’re making carbonara, why not learn the Italian words for the ingredients and recite the names by talking aloud. Intertwine the cooking with learning the language will form you into an active learner; this will make learning a more enjoyable experience. Now more than ever you can easily learn it from the comfort of your home; here is how: https://www.languagesalive.com/learn-italian-online/
Mix it up
If you’re feeling extra motivated why not listen to Italian music, try to work out what the song is about and what the lyrics are saying. Here are a couple of popular Italian songs with lyrics
Unwind in the evening with another Italian movie of a different genre to enhance your knowledge in conversations within a different genre or read an Italian article. These different learning processes will improve your interaction with the words and bring out the resilience within you.
Our sincere advice
At Languages Alive we believe learning a second language will ignite a flame inside you, with this spark a new you will be born. Learning a language may seem very hard and it may be a bumpy ride; however, with motivation, resilience and patience you will succeed.
You do indeed learn something new every day, avoid saying it’s too late to learn, there’s no such thing as too late and there’s no perfect time to learn. Take everything at your own pace but most importantly, don’t give up.
Feel alive again by learning Italian!