Hard to believe we are at the end of the semester already. At the beginning of the semester when we were told about the learning project, I started thinking about all the things I wanted to learn and had been putting off. There was so many, but I chose to learn Italian for my project since my husband and I are hoping to finally go on our honeymoon to Italy next year. He is currently battling cancer and this trip is something we are really looking forward to once he recovers. I am so glad I chose this for my project because it has been an educational journey over the past several weeks. I went from knowing next to no Italian, to learning basic sayings, animals, numbers, and colours. I was extremely shy and had no confidence when it came to filming myself at the beginning of the semester, but I gained the ability to film myself and it didn't turn out half bad. I was able to utilize the internet and learnt how to search properly for resources that would help me. I tried many new websites, videos, and apps that helped me through my journey. I learnt how to edit videos, which I had never done before, and now have gained knowledge and skills when it comes to that. It has been an exciting semester to say the least!
I am going to go over each week of my learning project to highlight my progress throughout the semester.
Here We Go!
Week 1: The Beginning of my Italian Journey
The first week was the week we chose our learning project, so I used the post to explain why I chose to learn Italian. My main reason for learning Italian was a future trip my husband and I have planned together. During this week I was very excited to start this learning journey but didn't really know where to begin. I had no idea what to expect for the coming weeks!
Week 2: Buongiorno... Good Day!
For this week, I used a podcast on Spotify called Let's Learn Italian. They are 1-10 minute podcasts going over basic phrases in Italian. My main take aways from the lesson were...
Yes - si
No - no
Good Day - Buongiorno
Good Evening - Buonasera
Goodnight - Buona Notte
Goodbye - Arrivederci
I found the podcast very helpful as a first step into learning Italian as it was a simple lesson that was straight to the point. I would recommend individuals starting to learn the language to use this podcast.
Online resources used for week 2:
- Let's Learn Italian podcast
Week 3: Want to Hear me Speak Italian??
For week 3, I found a video I wanted to try out on YouTube by Italian Pod 101 called "Learn Italian in 30 Minutes - All the Basics You Need". After starting and pausing the video multiple times, I decided it was time to film myself to show my learning. I was beyond nervous to do so as I lack confidence when it comes to filming myself. It took me quite a few takes for me to feel comfortable before I recorded a good video. I then used Windows Movie Editor to edit the video I created. For it being my first video I have ever recorded of myself and my first time editing, it didn't turn out so bad! My biggest take aways from this week...
- Counting to 100 in Italian
- Gaining confidence filming myself
- How to edit videos on Windows Movie Editor
Online resources used for week 3:
- Italian Pod 101
- "Learn Italian in 30 Minutes - All the Basics You Need" video
- Windows Movie Editor
Week 4: Is Rosetta Stone Worth It?
Rosetta Stone kept popping up at the top of my search page when I was looking for resources to learn Italian so I thought, why not give it a try? The app was user friendly but required a subscription, luckily they were offering a 3 day free trial so I could give it a try. In the lesson, I was taught male/female pronouns in Italian through a series of tests. I would have to repeat the word and the app would listen to me say it, there were matching questions, and fill in the blanks. There were about 35-40 small tests throughout the lesson that I needed to complete in order to finish the lesson. I didn't particularly enjoy this app and I personally don't think I would buy an actual subscription for it. My biggest take aways from this week...
- Male/female pronouns
- Addressing male/females in groups
- Learning to use Rosetta Stone
Online resources used for week 4:
- Rosetta Stone
Week 5: Adventures with Babbel
Babbel was an app I heard many great things about so I decided to try it for week 5. Since I already knew some Italian, the app placed me in beginner section 1 - course 1. The course focused on drinks at restaurants and the pronunciation of them. I was also taught how they would be used in a sentence with male/female pronouns. The course used multiple forms of testing such as saying the correct word and the app listening, multiple choice, and fill in the blank. The coolest feature on this course was one section where I needed to listen to an Italian conversation in real time and choose the correct English translation for what they were saying. I was confident enough to create another video this week going over the main drink words that were taught. Although the video was short, I was also able to speak on my thoughts on the app as well. My biggest take aways from this week...
- Pronouncing drinks that are in restaurants
- Using male/female pronouns with restaurant drinks
- Listening to an Italian conversation and translating it to English
Online resources used for week 5:
- Windows Movie Editor
Week 6: My New Favorite Way to Learn Italian
I did some digging for week 6 to find some online games and my search turned out to be very successful! I found a site called Digital Dialects that offered a ton of online learning for Italian as well as quizzes and games to test your knowledge. There were multiple categories to choose from, while I was on the site I decided to go with colours and animals. I was able to learn the words for basic colours as well as animals. For both these categories, I was able to test my knowledge with the audio quizzes available and ended up getting 90% on both quizzes!! I could have spent hours on end on this site going through all the categories. My biggest take aways from this week...
- Saying colours in Italian
- Saying animal names in Italian
- Utilizing the internet for sources
Online resources used for week 6:
- Digital Dialects website
Breakdown of Before & After
I created a chart to show my progress over the semester in my learning project. I feel as though I have accomplished a lot and was overwhelmed when I noticed how much knowledge I have gained. It is always a good idea to chart your progress so you can see how far you have come!
Advice & Recommendations
I have explored a lot of online resources in the past few weeks and there have been some amazing ones as well as some that were quite disappointing. For anyone wanting to learn a new language, my biggest piece of advice would be to stay away from the sites that require a subscription, such as Rosetta Stone. To me, they are not worth the money when there are so many better online resources available, you just have to take the time to look.
I highly recommend beginning your journey with an introduction lesson, like the one I tried out on Let's Learn Italian podcast and the Italian Pod 101 video on Youtube. When you are confident that you have the basics down, begin looking on the internet for free resources that allow you to expand your Italian vocabulary. Digital Dialects was a huge help for me and I know I will continue using that site as I progress in learning Italian.
That's a Wrap... For Now!
Well, there you have it, a breakdown of my learning project throughout the semester. I can't believe how fast it went by and although the semester has come to an end, my Italian learning journey is far from over. My goal is to have a solid understanding and knowledge of Italian when we go on our trip to Italy. I think this goal is very realistic given the skills I have gained this semester when it comes to looking for online resources. I look forward to continuing to find free online resources to learn Italian with these new skills I have learnt in EdTech300!
Thanks for following my journey,