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How to Start Thinking in Italian

Learn 4 tools and techniques to stop translating in your head and start thinking in Italian

Going through Italian lessons is enough to get by and learn the basics of Italian, but to truly become fluent you need to be able to think in Italian. This will allow you to have conversations with ease, read smoothly, and comprehensively understand natives. To do this, you need to go beyond just completing daily or weekly lessons.

We naturally translate in our heads because it’s viewed as the easiest way to learn the definitions needed when learning a language. This way of learning can actually hinder your skills and fluency later on. If your brain has to make neural connections between the word you’re learning, what it means in your native tongue, and the physical object the connection will not be nearly as strong. When you bypass the original translation between Italian and your native language then there is a more basic and strong connection between just the Italian vocabulary word and the tangible object.

start thinking in Italian

In this blog post, you will learn the 4 important techniques to easily and naturally begin to speculate about the daily occurrences in your life. The best part is all of these techniques are supported and can be achieved through ItalianPod101.com.

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1. Surround yourself with Italian

Surround Yourself

By surrounding yourself with Italian constantly you will completely immerse yourself in the language. Without realizing it you’ll be learning pronunciation, sentence structures, grammar, and new vocabulary. You can play music in the background while you’re cooking or have a Italian radio station on while you study. Immersion is a key factor with this learning process because it is one of the easiest things to do, but very effective. Even if you are not giving the program your full attention you will be learning.

One great feature of ItalianPod101.com is the endless podcasts that are available to you. You can even download and listen to them on the go. These podcasts are interesting and are perfect for the intention of immersion, they are easy to listen to as background noise and are interesting enough to give your full attention. Many of them contain stories that you follow as you go through the lessons which push you to keep going.

2. Learn through observation
learn through observation

Learning through observation is the most natural way to learn. Observation is how we all learned our native languages as infants and it’s a wonder why we stop learning this way. If you have patience and learn through observation then Italian words will have their own meanings rather than meanings in reference to your native language. Ideally, you should skip the bilingual dictionary and just buy a dictionary in Italian.

ItalianPod101.com also offers the materials to learn this way. We have numerous video lessons which present situational usage of each word or phrase instead of just a direct translation. This holds true for many of our videos and how we teach Italian.

3. Speak out loud to yourself
talk to yourself

Speaking to yourself in Italian not only gets you in the mindset of Italian, but also makes you listen to how you speak. It forces you to correct any errors with pronunciation and makes it easy to spot grammar mistakes. When you speak out loud talk about what you did that day and what you plan to do the next day. Your goal is to be the most comfortable speaking out loud and to easily create sentences. Once you feel comfortable talking to yourself start consciously thinking in your head about your daily activities and what is going on around you throughout the day.

With ItalianPod101.com you start speaking right away, not only this, but they have you repeat words and conversations after a native Italian speaker. This makes your pronunciation very accurate! With this help, you are on the fast path to making clear and complex sentences and then actively thinking about your day.

4. Practice daily

If you don’t practice daily then your progress will be greatly slowed. Many people are tempted to take the 20-30 minutes they should be practicing a day and practice 120 in one day and skip the other days. This isn’t nearly as effective because everyday you practice you are reinforcing the skills and knowledge you have learned. If you practice all in one day you don’t retain the information because the brain can realistically only focus for 30 minutes at most. If you’re studying for 120 minutes on the same subject little of the information will be absorbed. Studying everyday allows you to review material that you went over previous days and absorb a small amount of information at a time.

It’s tough to find motivation to study everyday, but ItalianPod101.com can help. It’s easy to stay motivated with ItalianPod101.com because we give you a set learning path, with this path we show how much progress you’ve made. This makes you stick to your goals and keep going!

Conclusion

Following the steps and having patience is the hardest part to achieving your goals, it’s not easy learning a new language. You are essentially teaching your brain to categorize the world in a completely new way. Stick with it and you can do it just remember the 4 tools I taught you today! With them, conversations, reading, and understanding will become much easier. The most important thing to remember is to use the tools that ItalianPod101.com provides and you will be on your way to being fluent!

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3 Reasons Why Successful Students Learn Italian In the Car

Not only is it possible to learn Italian in your car, there are 3 great benefits that will help you master the language faster and with less effort.

With everyone so pressed for time these days, it might seem like a daydream to believe that you could learn Italian in your car—but it’s not! Thanks to a wide range of new technologies and resources, learning a language in your car is easier than ever. Not only is it easy to learn a language while driving, there are actually a number of benefits, especially if the lessons are part of a structured learning program like ItalianPod101. Here are three specific benefits to learning Italian or any other new language in your car.

3 reasons why successful students learn italian in the car

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1. Transform Downtime into Progress

How much time do you spend commuting to and from work? Learning a language in your car transforms your commute time into tangible progress towards your dream. So instead of being stressed over how much time you are “wasting” on errands and daily commutes, you can decompress and have some fun while you learn Italian in your car!

2. Daily Exposure Leads to Passive Learning

Practice makes perfect and learning a new language is no different. The daily exposure you get when you learn Italian while driving helps improve listening comprehension, pronunciation, and of course helps build vocabulary and improve grammar. Don’t worry: You don’t need to memorize everything as you listen in Italian while driving. Just having continuous exposure to a foreign language helps you improve your vocabulary, learn faster, and ultimately retain more through passive learning.


3. Learning While Driving is Fun

Learning a new language does require a serious commitment, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun! When you learn Italian in your car, you get to take some time away from the PC or smartphone and immerse yourself in the language instead of just “studying” it.

Plus, there are a number of “fun” activities that you can do and still learn in your car, such as:
- Singing Along with Italian Songs
- Playing Word Games or Trivia
- Just Listening Along and Seeing How Much You Can Pick Up and Understand

Want to Learn How to Get Angry in Italian? Pick-Up Lines? Our Vocabulary Lists are Made for You!

Yes, you can learn a language while driving and have loads of fun doing it. Now let’s take a look at some specific things you can listen to while driving to help you learn a new language.

BONUS: 3 Ways to Learn Italian in Your Car

-Listen to Podcasts: Typically designed to focus on one topic or lesson, podcasts are a great way to learn a language while driving. Unfortunately, podcasts are rarely at the same listening/comprehension level as the language learner so listeners may not get their full value. But at ItalianPod101, our podcasts are created for every skill level so you don’t waste any time on material that isn’t relevant or suited to your exact needs.

-Sing Along to Italian Songs: Remember, just immersing yourself in a language can create passive learning and improve your pronunciation. Plus, with ItalianPod101, you can sing along and memorize the lyrics, and then look the words up and add them to your personal dictionary.

-Playing Word Games or Trivia: There are audio games available online that you can download to any media device and listen to on your commute. Although we recommend this option for more advanced users, games are a fun and productive way to learn Italian in your car because they require listening and comprehension skills.

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You won’t recognize or understand every word you hear in a Italian song, podcast, or game—but that’s ok. The daily repetition and immersion in the language leads to passive learning that gradually increases your knowledge of vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation. And the greater your foundation in grammar and vocabulary, the more you’ll understand and learn from the audio lessons, podcasts, or whatever you listen to while learning Italian in your car.

Yes, you can learn Italian while driving because it leads to passive learning via daily immersion in the language. Although you may not understand all or even most of what you hear at first, the exposure helps improve pronunciation, vocabulary, and even grammar over time. Learning a language while driving also helps transform your commute into exciting “exotic adventures” that secretly teach you Italian in the process. Podcasts, songs, and even games can all help you learn Italian in your car while eliminating the “boring commute” in the process!

At ItalianPod101, we have more than 2500+ HD audio lessons and podcasts for every skill level that you can download and use to learn Italian while driving!
So don’t forget to sign up for a Free Lifetime Account on ItalianPod101.com to access tons of FREE lessons and features to become fluent in Italian!

Do People Understand Where You’re Coming From in Italy?

Imagine you have landed in Italy and are out and meeting people and exploring your surroundings. After you say “Ciao!” ( the equivalent to ‘Hello’ in English), your Italian friend may become more curious about you and your origins. And if your new friend asks you:
Da dove vieni? 

Don’t be surprised! Your friend just wants to know where you come from. Da dove vieni? (informal) or Da dove viene? (formal), translates to “Where do you
come from?” 

In this case, you should answer with your country of origin. For example:
Vengo dall’Italia (I come from Italy)

You may also hear Di dove sei?, which also means  “Where do you come from?” , with the small difference that Di dove sei? requires a more specific location, and you should answer with the name of your hometown or the most famous city you can think of that can give your Italian friend an idea of the location or environment that you come from.

And you can be sure that there will be many different countries of origin around you. With its historical heritage and panoramic views (not to mention its world-recognized cuisine!), Italy is is a very popular destination for travelers all around the world, attracting over 4 million tourists every year!

A Night to Remember in Italy

The Focus of This Lesson is Italian Greetings for the Evening Buona sera. “Good Evening.”

Good Evening

buona sera (also written buonasera) is the perfect equivalent for “good evening” and as such you should use this term when meeting someone.

Instead, you may use buona serata (never written buonaserata) to wish someone a nice evening. You should not use this greeting when meeting someone for the first time or upon entering a place.

When someone is about to go to bed, buona notte (also written buonanotte) is almost exclusively the word people use.

Do People Understand Where You’re Coming From in Italy?

Imagine you have landed in Italy and are out and meeting people and exploring your surroundings. After you say “Ciao!” ( the equivalent to ‘Hello’ in English), your Italian friend may become more curious about you and your origins. And if your new friend asks you:

Da dove vieni?
Don’t be surprised! Your friend just wants to know where you come from. Da dove vieni? (informal) or Da dove viene? (formal), translates to “Where do you
come from?”

In this case, you should answer with your country of origin. For example:
Vengo dall’Italia (I come from Italy)

You may also hear Di dove sei?, which also means  “Where do you come from?” , with the small difference that Di dove sei? requires a more specific location, and you should answer with the name of your hometown or the most famous city you can think of that can give your Italian friend an idea of the location or environment that you come from.

And you can be sure that there will be many different countries of origin around you. With its historical heritage and panoramic views (not to mention its world-recognized cuisine!), Italy is is a very popular destination for travelers all around the world, attracting over 4 million tourists every year!

First Impressions can last a lifetime!

As you may have seen in Italian movies or during your stay in in Italy if you had the chance , you will notice that ciao is the easiest and most common Italian greeting people use to say “hello” or “goodbye.”
Usually though, you should only use this greeting with people whom you are well acquainted with, such as friends or
relatives.

As a special case, you may notice that it is common to address foreigners entering into Italy with ciao. The reason for this is that it’s
a friendly and easy way to greet them. Sometimes owners of casual, modern shops may greet customers with ciao as a way to keep social distances at a minimum and make talking easier and faster,thus making you feel more comfortable (and this way making their patrons feel relaxed and at home).

For first time meetings though, you may use buon giorno (also written buongiorno) with anyone. Literally, buon giorno means “good day,” however, you may also interpret it to mean “good morning” or “good afternoon.”

As a rule of thumb you can use buon giorno only during daytime-from morning until evening-or from before daybreak to before dusk. If we want to express “good morning” clearly, we may use buon mattino, but this expression is very rare. As for “good afternoon,” we sometimes use buon pomeriggio.

Yet, we are sure that if there was to be any confusion with greetings, your Italian hosts will be kind to you no matter what. Italians are known for their friendliness and warmth, so even a simple “Ciao!” will bring about a smile and maybe a long lasting friendship!

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year From ItalianPod101.com!

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from everyone here at ItalianPod101.com! We’re grateful to have listeners just like you, and we’re eagerly waiting for the upcoming year to learn Italian together!

And when the New Year comes around, be sure to make a resolution to study Italian with ItalianPod101.com!

Have a healthy and happy holiday season.

From the ItalianPod101.com team!