Everything You Need To Learn Italian
Italian is a Romance language spoken mainly in Europe: Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Vatican City, Monaco, and San Marino. A small number of speakers can also be found in Eritrea, East Africa. There are about 60 million speakers worldwide.
Italian originated from Vulgar Latin and evolved into its current form alongside other romance languages such as French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian and Catalan. It is also mutually intelligible with Corsican, the language spoken in the French island of Corsica.
Italian is the language of art and music and has influenced the entire world, particularly in the fields of opera, philosophy, science and literature.
Italian is also considered to be one of the nicest sounding languages in the world; and due to its phonetic structure, it is relatively easy for English speakers to pronounce.
Learning materials for people interested in studying Italian are, fortunately, plentiful. This is likely due to the language’s importance on a global scale. Below you’ll find a wide range of resources, from books to videos, that we hope will get you to your goal of Italian fluency.
Italian Language Learning Books
If you’re just starting out, you can’t go wrong by grabbing an Italian course book that breaks down the language, its structure, grammar and syntax. You’ll learn how to use the language correctly, and pick up a bunch of commonly-used vocabulary to start you on your journey.
A concise English-Italian dictionary will be invaluable as you progress through your studies, allowing you to look up not only the meaning of new Italian words, but see examples of how they’re used in different contexts.
Planning a trip to Italy soon? Then an Italian phrasebook is a must. It’ll give you the essentials that you need, such as greetings, numbers and getting around, so you’ll be able to communicate effectively with natives.
Italian Children’s Books
You can strengthen your overall Italian comprehension skills by reading Italian books written for children. These books are easy to read and digest, but they’ll still challenge you as a beginner. You’ll be exposed to basic vocabulary and storylines, which will help you to understand how sentences and words intertwine with each other.
Some of the kids’ books on this list are bilingual Italian-English stories with dual language text, meaning you can easily refer to the English text when you come across an Italian word you don’t understand. This eliminates the need to continuously consult a dictionary.
Once you’ve had your fill of Italian kids’ books, you should move on to some more complex texts, namely Italian books written for older readers/adults.
Not only will these books help you to broaden your vocabulary, they’ll give you an insight into the way real Italians speak. They’re also more relatable and tackle more interesting topics.
Reading Italian adult fiction/non-fiction will improve your reading comprehension tremendously, and you’ll soon see your fluency improving.
Italian Movies & TV Shows
There are a handful of Italian-language learning DVDs aimed at children, but are great for beginners of all ages. These focus on introducing learners to common Italian words in a fun, colorful, often musical way that’s usually more memorable than other teaching methods.
Italian Digital Courses
Not everyone finds learning Italian using books effective. Many learn better with digital courses.
Italian e-courses use audio and/or video to teach you how to use the language quite early on, and introduce you to grammar in a more natural way that doesn’t get boring.
Udemy offers a highly comprehensive Italian course that’s incredibly affordable, packed with a whopping 39 hours of video instruction, lifetime access to it and all future updates, and can be used on any smart device, on or offline.
Both the Michel Thomas Method’s Italian course and the Pimsleur Italian courses are audio-only and, like Udemy’s, can be accessed on almost all devices with audio output capabilities. You get hours of audio instruction from experienced Italian teachers, who simplify the language in a way that’s easy to grasp.
ITALIAN UDEMY COURSES
ITALIAN AUDIO COURSES
Total Italian with the Michel Thomas Method
Pimsleur Italian Basic Course - Level 1 Lessons 1-10 CD: Learn to Speak and Understand Italian with Pimsleur
Tired of learning Italian through books and courses? Well, mix things up with some Italian products that make the language learning process a lot more fun.
Italian flash cards are great for practicing your vocabulary, whether you’re at home or on the go. They usually have pictures on one side to prompt your memory, and the Italian word on the other.
Free Italian Worksheets
You’ll need a way to practice your new Italian language skills. That’s why we created downloadable Italian worksheets and made them free for you to print out and complete at home.
With our free Italian word search puzzle PDFs, you can test your knowledge of common Italian words in a fun way, and make the words you pick up more likely to stay in your memory.