The Best Way to Learn Italian
Learning a foreign language is not an easy task but, after years of struggling and frustration, I believe I've found the most effective way to do it. I can now speak Italian to quite an advanced level and I'd like to offer you a few suggestions as to how to give yourself the best chance of success. The first point is, you must have a teacher. Despite the impression given by some courses' marketing blurb, it is extraordinarily difficult to learn a language on your own.
Teach-yourself materials are handy as back-up but they really can't replace a human teacher. Students of history or geography can learn a lot by reading and by listening to lectures. With a language, progress by these means is much slower, because you need to speak. You will learn the most, therefore, in a very small group or, better still, one to one. Every Thursday night for 18 months or so, I went to Italian class at my local college. I learnt more than I had at home by myself but most people were coming just for fun, for something sociable to do, and progress was slow.
About a year ago, I found a language school in Manchester, where I live, that specialises in one-to-one training and this is when I really started to learn. When you are the only student, the course moves at your pace, you don't miss anything if you are ill and, because you can't just sit at the back and hope the teacher doesn't notice you, you have to make the most of every lesson. As well as being efficient, having individual lessons is extremely convenient. I'm not tied to Thursday evenings any more; I can book my lessons to fit around my other commitments. We've gradually spoken more and more Italian and now we hardly ever resort to English. It's such a buzz communicating entirely in Italian - it's no longer an academic exercise; it's exchanging ideas.
It's challenging sometimes but I wouldn't have it any other way. So this is my advice to you: stop wrestling with books and CDs on your own, bypass the big group and cut straight to one-to-one lessons with an experienced, native-speaking Italian teacher. I honestly wouldn't have imagined I could get this far - and you might just surprise yourself too!.
If you are serious about speaking Italian, call this language school in Manchester and enrol on a one-to-one Italian course.
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