Learn the Language of Romance
Al dente, a cappella, graffiti, fiasco, prima donna and the list goes on; it is fascinating how many Italian phrases and words have crept their way into the English language with many of us not realising how often we use these phrases in everyday life.
Italian is the official language of Italy, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City and Istria (in Slovenia and Croatia). It is the third most widely spoken first language in the European Union with 85 million speakers worldwide. Interestingly, Italian is the second most common second language spoken by 14 million EU citizens.
The lingua franca in Catholicism, Italian is also considered as the language of music due to its prominence in musical terminology and opera. Like many modern languages, Italian spoken today is descended from Latin, but the connection is even closer in Italian where the contrast between short and long consonants, typical in Latin, is retained in modern Italian.
Language Courses in London
London’s love affair with Italy is in full bloom, and with that an abundance of opportunities to learn the language of romance. Here are just a few to get you started.
Language Courses at the Italian Cultural Institute - offer free language assessment tests to ensure you are studying at the right level for you. The institute offers classes to all levels (from beginner to advanced), flexibility and tailored to your needs.
City University London - offers short courses for absolute beginners. The evening classes are taught over 10 weeks by native speakers. The short course is ideal for those working full time.
University of Westminster - offer part-time evening classes for those with no prior knowledge of Italian.
Learn Italian with a Twist - Vivere l’italiano offer Italian language classes with a difference - this being the idea of combining language learning with Italian cuisine, art, film and politics.
Of Course Italian! - This charming Italian school offer classes in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.
Online Resources For Learning Italian
With many of us working full time and leading busy lives, it may be hard to squeeze in time into your schedule for language learning. Fortunately this is where online resources come to the fore, where you have easy access to exercises, apps and TV series in the language you want to learn.
Learn Italian with the BBC - the BBC come up trumps with their extensive Italian language page, with audio lessons, games, useful vocab and grammar explanations.
The Most Popular Italian Language Shows - according to IMDb ratings. This is a great way to learn the language without realising it. You can add the Italian subtitles to make the programme easier to follow.
Italian Newspapers Online - check out Corriere Della Sera, La Gazzetta and La Repubblica
Rai Radio - with various radio stations to choose from.