The 5-Week Linguist: Italian in My Car

Five weeks is no time to learn a language. However, you can make amazing progress when you use your time wisely.

Realistically, I think a lot of us don’t have that much time, so it’s a matter of making time when and where you can. My goal this year is to hit the B2 level of Italian, and I plan on doing this in five-week chunks.

I also plan on not doing this in too intense a way that’s going to really cut into other parts of my life. I’m simply too busy for that. I also don’t want to be bored silly, so it’s important to change up what you’re doing. If you get bored you will stop, quit, and not make progress.

I’m a native English speaker, and a C2 Level Spanish speaker. Via laddering in Spanish and self study I’ve achieved a B1 Level of Italian, but it’s been a couple of years since I’ve worked on my Italian at all. So, I definitely have my work cut out for me. It has been my experience that it takes twice as long to advance from B1 to B2 than it does to advance from A1 to A2, and then into B1. I know that this won’t be as easy as it was getting started.

My first five weeks are focusing on Italian in the car. My first review course was a Mark Frobose Italian course. I think Mark’s great fun. He speaks with a native speaker who models all of the pronunciation, and he gives all the prompts. It was a great way to review.

I’m also completely in love with Pimsleur. If you’re not familiar with it, Pimsleur has all these great language courses that you might find at your library, or on Audible. They’re pricey, but they’re definitely worth it.

Pimsleur Italian has five levels, and I’ve completed levels one and two in the past. My first five weeks is a review of Pimsleur Italian 2. Each lesson is 30 minutes. I spent a half an hour each way in the car listening to Italian, and speaking at all the prompts on both the Mark Frobose course and the Pimsleur course.

Each week I do a recording. My first couple of recordings are almost embarrassing. I hadn’t spoken Italian in nearly two years. I felt awkward. I didn’t really know what to talk about, and I also found myself wanting to talk about lots of things and I was missing a word here and there. I decided to make the focus on simply review. I said some very basic things about myself, greetings and my family. Recording yourself is a great way to document your progress. Do it every week for a couple of months and you will be amazed at the progress you’ve made.

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