The online Italian lessons, once a novelty, are now more commonplace. However, the Italian language still remains a language that is learned mainly out of love and not out of necessity. For this reason, like all lovers, the students of the Italian language prefer to stay close to their loved one and learn the language directly in Italy. Certainly no one can blame them, but after months of online Italian lessons I feel the duty to spend a few words in favor of technology and to thank the students who have decided to travel in the Italian language and culture from their sofa at home.
Why am I doing that? Because while waiting to return to normal and meet our students in person at our Italian language schoolin Verona, we had the opportunity to explore the challenges of delivering Italian teaching online. At L’Italiano con noi we will remember the 2020 also as another year of professional growth and implementation of our skills and services.
FROM AN EDUCATIONAL POINT OF VIEW today our online Italian lessons:
- are more structured. The live lessons with the teacher are supported by the virtual classroom on which the teacher posts day by day the lesson notes, the homework and the materials to be prepared for the next class.
- have also a task-based approach. Conversing in the language is very important as well as learning the grammar, but there are other key aspects that the students need to acquire and today our students have the opportunity to work on those aspects also online by solving different kind of tasks and using the language in an a way that is always different, engaging and practical.
- offer students more autonomy. At any time, the students can enter their virtual classroom, reflect on what they have learned to do with the language, have access to all the materials and take the online tests assigned in progress.
FROM A HUMAN POINT OF VIEW, this year we have learnt that making good friends is possible also from a distance. The fun and pleasure of meeting others remains the same. As if that were not enough, in the last months we have entered the students’ homes and they have entered ours. We have got to know the people they live with, visited their homes and looked out the window with them.
I can’t say that the online mode has become our favorite. Those who love this job, as we do, can’t wait to meet the students in person and welcome them to their Italian language school without having to filter their faces through a video. However, I must admit that, thanks to technology, through the Italian language we have in our own way filled the silence and sometimes overcome loneliness. At the time of the coronavirus these are not aspects that can be underestimated.