Two years ago when I first came to the Amalfi Coast, I knew only a smattering of Italian words. I could say the always useful tourist expressions such as, grazie, buon giorno and Dov’è il bagno?, but little did I suspect back then that living in Italy was in my very near future. Never underestimate the amount of communication that can happen by smiling and creative gesturing or arm waving (and more smiling). But it didn’t take long before learning Italian quickly moved to the top of my priority list.
Every day I am learning more about the beautiful Italian language, and yet it is something I haven’t written about often here on Ciao Amalfi. I know that many of you who stop by here regularly are also at various stages of learning Italian, and are always eager to learn more. So I thought for this week’s Sunday Shout-out I would share with you an interesting website I recently discovered for learning Italian called L’Italiano in Famiglia. (Don’t be intimidated by the Italian website, because I think there is also a lot there for beginners to learn, too.)
One of those cold, foggy days last winter, I was writing while my boyfriend was explore the upper limits of the 800 some TV channels (it might be more, but it is some ridiculous amount) we get on Sky. I am not a TV watcher, so the whole endeavor seemed a bit strange to me. Suddenly he stopped and said, “Oh, here is a program for you.” And, indeed, it was a program made just for me! L’Italiano in Famiglia is a TV program created by the Ufficio Scolastico in the Province of Brescia to help foreigners learn Italian and integrate into Italian society. Lovely! I tried to catch the programs on TV, but found it easier to just head over to the website and watch the programs and use the interactive vocabulary and tools online. While the entire program is written in Italian (it is a good reading exercise, too!), I have found it to be presented in an intuitive and easy to navigate format. Plus, you can watch the programs again and again online to hear the dialogues. They also provide scripts for the videos to help you follow along. (You will need a good dictionary handy, or you can use my favorite online resource wordreference.com.)
So get out your quaderni and enjoy your studies of the beautiful Italian language! Buon divertimento! Have fun!
What are your favorite online sources for learning Italian??