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COURSE NAME: "Introduction to Teaching Italian as a Second Language"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Spring 2021

INSTRUCTOR: Ada Bertini Bezzi
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: F 9:00-1:00 PM [Course meets on: February 26, March 5, March 19, April 9]
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: IT 302 or permission of the instructor

This is an introductory course to teaching Italian as a second language to adult speakers. This is a course which covers theories as well as techniques and practice for the teaching of Italian. It will consider teaching methodology, lesson planning, learning contexts, the role of the teacher, the teaching of the four language skills, the teaching of the three language systems (grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation), the error analysis and the verification and evaluation. Students will also be provided with assisted lesson planning, observed teaching practice, and oral and written feedback. Students will be supervised during their training at John Cabot and will have the opportunity to put in practice the theory in real university classes.

In this course  which covers theories as well as techniques and practice for the teaching of Italian, it will be covered  teaching methodology, lesson planning, learning contexts, the role of the teacher, the teaching of the four language skills, the teaching of the three language systems (grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation), the error analysis and the verification and evaluation. The course will focus on practical activities related to the teaching of the Italian language. The course gives students the chance to test their skills in a real classroom. 

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to: 

Identify and define aims and objectives for a range of Italian language courses (Beginners to Advanced).

Devise and execute sample lesson plans in a real classroom situation.

Use a range of classroom management skills and techniques in a language lesson.

Create and implement a curriculum, syllabus and outline assessment strategies for a range of Italian language courses.

Use the latest technological tools in a language class

Integrate Web 2.0 tools, such as educational blogs, wikis and podcasts in the teaching environment.


WRITTEN EXAM30% of grade from a short written exam, 20% of grade from Group works and 50% of grade based on a student's performance in lesson practice. 60% would be considered a passing grade.30%

Agrade of A to be given to students who provide an excellent lesson plan, demonstrate an excellent awareness of teaching methodology, and provide an excellent learning environment in which teaching aims are fully achieved.
Bgrade of B to be given to students who provide a good lesson plan, demonstrate a good awareness of teaching methodology, and provide a good learning environment in which teaching aims are mostly achieved
Cgrade of C to be given to students who provide an adequate lesson plan, demonstrate a reasonable awareness of teaching methodology, and provide an adequate learning environment in which teaching aims are generally achieved
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
Ffailing grade will be awarded if students do not provide a sufficient lesson plan, demonstrate less than a reasonable awareness of teaching methodology, and do not provide an adequate learning environment in which teaching aims can be achieved

You cannot make-up a major exam (midterm or final) without the permission of the Dean’s Office. The Dean’s Office will grant such permission only when the absence was caused by a serious impediment, such as a documented illness, hospitalization or death in the immediate family (in which you must attend the funeral) or other situations of similar gravity. Absences due to other meaningful conflicts, such as job interviews, family celebrations, travel difficulties, student misunderstandings or personal convenience, will not be excused. Students who will be absent from a major exam must notify the Dean’s Office prior to that exam. Absences from class due to the observance of a religious holiday will normally be excused. Individual students who will have to miss class to observe a religious holiday should notify the instructor by the end of the Add/Drop period to make prior arrangements for making up any work that will be missed. 
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.





Introduction to teaching Italian to adult speakers

Principles of glottodidactics. Approaches, theories, methods.

Group work: analysis of manuals for teaching Italian L2, in order to identify the characteristics of the main approaches and methods of language teaching


How to create a learning path

Curriculum, syllabus, corpus, program

Language teaching goals: communicative skills and "glottomatetica"

Learning units and didactic unit


The concept of standards: what Italian should we teach to foreign learners? The learning contexts. Analysis of learners' profiles. The intercultural competence.

The Common European Framework for Languages. The linguistic and communicative skills, and the levels of competence descriptors.  


How to teach grammar and vocabulary - Strategies

Deductive and inductive grammar - Contrastive grammar


How to teach listening and reading

Listening for gist and for details - Skimming and skanning


Communicative approach and phonetics

Group work: from theory to practice

STEP 7 - 8

Planning and educational programming.

The selection and organization of educational material - The teaching unit - Skills and teaching techniques - The role of the teacher - Error analysis, inter language and error fossilization - Verification and evaluation.


The use of new technologies: advantages and disadvantages

Social media, blog, skype, you tube, wiki, podcast

Group work: from the selection of materials to the construction of a teaching unit


Teaching project

STEP 11-15

Teaching practice at John Cabot - Experiential learning vs classroom learning

Assisted lesson planning

Teaching practice

Peer to peer review

Oral/written feedback




























....."GOOD TEACHING is as much about passion as it is about reason. It’s about not only motivating students to learn, but teaching them how to learn, and doing so in a manner that is relevant, meaningful, and memorable. It’s about caring for your craft, having a passion for it, and conveying that passion to everyone, most importantly to your students.

GOOD TEACHING is about substance and training students as consumers of knowledge. It’s about doing your best to keep on top of your field, reading sources, inside and outside of your areas of expertise, and being at the leading edge as often as possible. But knowledge is not confined to scholarly journals. Good teaching is also about bridging the gap between theory and practice. It’s about leaving the ivory tower and immersing oneself in the field, talking to, consulting with, and assisting practitioners, and liaising with their communities.

GOOD TEACHING is about listening, questioning, being responsive, and remembering that each student and class is different. It’s about eliciting responses and developing the oral communication skills of the quiet students. It’s about pushing students to excel; at the same time, it’s about being human, respecting others, and being professional at all times.

GOOD TEACHING is about not always having a fixed agenda and being rigid, but being flexible, fluid, experimenting, and having the confidence to react and adjust to changing circumstances. It’s about getting only 10 percent of what you wanted to do in a class done and still feeling good. It’s about deviating from the course syllabus or lecture schedule easily when there is more and better learning elsewhere. Good teaching is about the creative balance between being an authoritarian dictator on the one hand and a pushover on the other. Good teachers migrate between these poles at all times, depending on the circumstances. They know where they need to be and when.

GOOD TEACHING is also about style. Should good teaching be entertaining? You bet! Does this mean that it lacks in substance? Not a chance! Effective teaching is not about being locked with both hands glued to a podium or having your eyes fixated on a slide projector while you drone on. Good teachers work the room and every student in it. They realize that they are conductors and the class is their orchestra. All students play different instruments and at varying proficiencies. A teacher’s job is to develop skills and make these instruments come to life as a coherent whole to make music.

GOOD TEACHING is about humor. This is very important. It’s about being self-deprecating and not taking yourself too seriously. It’s often about making innocuous jokes, mostly at your own expense, so that the ice breaks and students learn in a more relaxed atmosphere where you, like them, are human with your own share of faults and shortcomings.

GOOD TEACHING is about caring, nurturing, and developing minds and talents. It’s about devoting time, often invisible, to every student. It’s also about the thankless hours of grading, designing or redesigning courses, and preparing materials to further enhance instruction.

GOOD TEACHING is supported by strong and visionary leadership, and very tangible instructional support resources, personnel, and funds. Good teaching is continually reinforced by an overarching vision that transcends the entire organization from full professors to part-time instructors and is reflected in what is said, but more importantly by what is done.

GOOD TEACHING is about mentoring between senior and junior faculty, teamwork, and being recognized and promoted by one’s peers. Effective teaching should also be rewarded, and poor teaching needs to be remediated through training and development programs".....

AT THE END OF THE DAY, good teaching is about having fun, experiencing pleasure and intrinsic rewards…like locking eyes with a student in the back row and seeing the synapses and neurons connecting, thoughts being formed, the person becoming better, and a smile cracking across a face as learning all of a sudden happens. It’s about the former student who says your course changed her life. It’s about another telling you that your course was the best one he’s ever taken. Good teachers practice their craft not for the money or because they have to, but because they truly enjoy it and because they want to. Good teachers couldn’t imagine doing anything else.