Tuesday, June 01, 2010

(Italian) School's Out For Summer.

Anyone remember that song?

Last night was the final class of the semester. My professor said my Italian has definitely improved since the class began. (Uhmm too bad I had to ask the British guy next to me to translate her comment. heh)

Two other students brought gelato and pastries. I think all the sugar made us a little crazy. Our poor professor's lesson plan went out the window. Instead of reviewing grammar, for two hours we argued about Italian politics, American politics, bad urban planning, food, why is Italian grammar so freaking difficult, the best places to live, the difference between Tuscan, Roman and Sicilian accents, etc.

One of the other British students and I got into it because he said he preferred to watch American films dubbed in Italian. He said he couldn't stand American accents. Everyone in class started laughing. I told him not to get it twisted...not every British accent sounds like Laurence Oliver's.

Then he preceded to talk smack about Naples. One of our TAs (teaching assistant) said she was from Naples. Boh. Another student said to him, "What's wrong with you today?" ha.

It was fun to argue in Italian. My verb tenses weren't too bad but my vocabulary was a sad situation. I ended up speaking some ungodly combination of Italian and English.

My professor asked if I plan to continue on to Level 3 this fall. Level 2, which was supposed to be intermediate Italian, kicked my butt. I'm not sure if I can handle Advanced Italian but I have to try. I refuse to be that expat who can't speak the language.

Over the summer I'm going to do my best not to forget everything I've learned. One of the TAs and I plan to meet. I will help her with her English (she speaks Spanish fluently but has trouble with English) and she will help me with my Italian.

I'm finally at the point where I can read Italian magazines without looking up every other word. It used to take me forever to get though Vanity Fair or Italian Vogue which was very frustrating. I bought a book of poetry "Ballate Non Pagate" by Alda Merini which is challenging but rewarding.

I also have several childrens' books and a few novels to read. The May issue of Italian Conde Nast Traveller has several fantastic articles on the Italian coasts. I'm ready to go to the beach.


Viajera said...

Bravo to you. To even be able to read without looking up every word is progress indeed.

Rose in Cali said...

Brava! The lively conversation in class is much more real-life than reviewing grammar. I'm sure your prof's lesson plan was just a back-up anyway. And thank you for defending your fellow Americans! We do NOT all sound alike. In bocca al lupo in Level 3! :D

Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

If you want to read some Italian for good practice, I highly recommend Paulo Coelho's books translated to Italian, especially The Alchemist. He writes so simply and beautifully, and his books are definitely good for intermediate-but-looking-to-advance Italian students, IMHO.

Congrats on wrapping up Italiano 2!

dorina said...

kudos for completing the year! i think you're doing so well. what a fun last class you had, and it'll be great to continue over the summer. definitely go on to level 3!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

viajera - Thank you. Now I look up every fifth or sixth word. ha

rose - You're welcome. I told him American accents are very diverse. How could he say he hated all American accents? I had to set him straight. heh

michelle - thanks for the suggestions.

dorina - I think I will. If the class is too difficult for me, I could always repeat Level 2.

girasoli said...

Sounds like a fun class. Congratulations on completing Level 2!

That song plays in my head every year on our last day of school (I am a teacher).

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

girasoli - thank you. It was a fun class (and very frustrating for me at times!).

C said...

ooh, if you can read italian vogue and vanity fair, I'd say bravissima!! Congratulations!!!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

c - note, I read them very slowly. heh

C said...

Still very good! Give yourself credit!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

c - okay. I will :)