Mi manca la pratica

Nov 02, 2014 1566

I lack practice. It's the go-to phrase we all use to explain why la bella lingua we've worked so hard to master doesn't just roll off the tongue at will. Even a native speaker recently lamented to me that "mi manca la pratica." "When you're constantly immersed in the English language, you have trouble making the transition back to Italian and you often grope for the right word," she explained. Luckily, opportunities abound in New Mexico to practice, learn and listen to the Italian language.

While not "total immersion" – considered the gold standard for language fluency – there are a number of informal conversation groups throughout the state (many listed in the newsletter calendar) that offer a chance to speak or to just sit and listen. Additionally, UNM Continuing Education in Albuquerque offers a class devoted to conversational Italian.

Even if you're starting from scratch with a beginning Italian class or a Pimsleur or Rosetta Stone program, these opportunities to hear Italian being spoken are helpful for pronunciation, learning every day phrases and for getting a sense of the rhythm of the language. Just be sure to position yourself close to the native speakers in the group and listen attentively!

Without a doubt the closest we can get to a total immersion listening experience in New Mexico is available through Dish TV's Italian Programming Package. It requires signing up for Dish satellite TV, but provides 24 hours a day of live Italian news, miniseries, cooking shows and even Italian soaps and cartoons http://afreedish.com/programming/dish-international/dish-italian. As L'Italo Americano reported recently, Italian is the fourth most studied language in the world; and in the US, Italian language classes increase by 15-20% each year.

In December's Italy in New Mexico we'll talk with Professoressa Annalisa DiNola about how Central New Mexico Community College (CNM) will contribute to that statistic with the addition of its first-ever Italian language program coming this January.

Source: Italy in New Mexico

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