Language Immersion classes in Italy?

Jun 22nd, 2008, 04:02 PM
  #1  
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Language Immersion classes in Italy?

Anyone ever taken any programs at any of the language schools in Italy, specifically 2-3 immersion classes in Siena, Rome or Florence? My recent trip to Italy has only fanned the fire to return!

Thanks,

Kathy
kathrynj is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 04:40 AM
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Hi, Kathryn. I've been wanting to do the same myself. Over on the Slow Travel website, there is a short essay on one woman's experience at the Koine School in Lucca. And I think you may find several trip reports with mentions of a week or two at the Koine in Florence.

I am partial to the city of Lucca, but have also considered studying in Siena, though I cannot remember the name of the school there.
JaninLucca is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 04:58 AM
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I attended the Koine Lucca school for 2 weeks in 2006. Unfortunately, although I loved Lucca , I cannot recommend the Koine school. The director and admin staff were very cold , bordering on nasty.

The first week our group had a teacher that had no control of the group whatsoever, and was at best mediocre. Second week I had the misfortune of having the director as the teacher. Actually, he was better as a teacher that as a manager, but that is not saying much.

I recommend that you look into a school caleed Saena Iulia in Siena. Only reason I couldn't attend there was that it was during Palio time and there were no suitable accommodations.

Good luck!
cruiseluv is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 05:23 AM
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Thanks all---the place I read about online is Scuola Leonardo da Vinci. They seem to have classes in Florence, Siena, Rome, etc.

One thing that was really interesting is a senior class for 2 weeks (senior being over 50) with lessons in the moring and cultural activities each afternoon.

I'll check into the Saena Lulia place in Siena.
kathrynj is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 05:57 AM
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Kathryn,

It's Saena Iulia.

I have seen the website for the Da Vinci school but have not heard/read any comments about it.
cruiseluv is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 06:59 AM
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We studied in Castleraimondo for 5 weeks, they have six levels and you are tested verbally and with a written test upon entry to determine which class level they put you in.

Here is their web site

http://www.scuoladantealighieri.org/home.html


I chose this school over schools in Rome, Florence of Siena because my husband wanted to learn Italian, and I already did. I figured if we were in a smaller village he would be forced to use the italian more than he would in a larger city.

We had a wonderful time.

wanderlust5 is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 08:09 AM
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Hi Wanderlust,

Sounds very interesting . I also prefer to go to smaller places, that's why I selected Lucca over Florence or Rome.

Where did you stay while taking the classes? Did the school arrange for it?

Thanks!
cruiseluv is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 09:21 AM
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Do you really mean that you want to learn the Italian language and not very important how spend the remaining part of the day ?
If it is your goal and if it is not scaring and boring for you a true full immersion, I suggest a very small town in Marche, its name is Frontino.
In Frontino there is a vey good school of Italian for foreign students.
What it is nice and smart, in my opinion, that they not only teach Italian language but also, I do not find the right words, something about Italian mind set, Italian behavior and several other interesting angles of view of Italian way of life.

Ciao.
vincenzod is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 09:30 AM
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Thanks everyone. My hope is combine 2 weeks of lessons along with some time to explore, then take another week to have fun.

I'll check in to the places that have been recommended.

Kathy
kathrynj is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 10:34 AM
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I've spent 8 weeks over 3 trips at Saena Iulia in Siena and loved it.

Very small classes (max 6), Great teachers, good location. The accommodation organised through the school has always been good (decent apartments).

Classes last 4 hours a day, from 9 to 1pm. Several students did extra lessons in the afternoon.
Classes are separated by ability, not age - they are reshuffled every so often so that nobody feels left behind or held back.

I am in my mid forties but did not feel out of place. Other students included several American Teenagers, a couple of Retirees (Australian and American) a group of Germans ranging from late teens to mid 50s. Everybody seems to get along.

Did it help - certainly. My confidence improved greatly and I got over my fear of speaking and making mistakes.

I fell in love with Siena as a city (Although I rate Lucca very highly as well).

I cannot rate the school as it is the only one I have attended. It works for me and I intend to go back.
willit is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 10:54 AM
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I have taken a class at Cultura Italiana in Bologna. I was impressed with the quality of instructors as well as responsiveness to all the inquiries I made before the class. At the level I took the class, I had a conversation instructor after a session with a grammar instructor who was the author of the textbook we used.
greg is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 12:35 PM
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This looks like the site for the school that Vicenzo recommended; I would love to do this someday!


http://www.roccadeimalatesta.it/centrostudi_uk.php
ekscrunchy is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 01:57 PM
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My husband and I have attended Il Sasso in Montepulciano for 5 2-week sessions. We love the location - the teachers are great - you are put in a level according to your ability - they offer excursions, hiking, cooking classes, etc. The school will help find living accommodations. Can't recommend it too highly! www.ilsasso.com.
roamer is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 02:02 PM
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VincenzoD and Ekscrunchy,

Wow. That idea and the website---really an interesting and I will check in to it.....yes, that would be a cultural immersion as well as learning the language.

I live in the DC area so am starting a class July 1st---may also see how the 2 places here work out and see what level I might want to do in Italy........

Ekscruncky--have enjoyed many of your posts and used them prior to my recent Italy trip.

Kathy
kathrynj is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 03:24 PM
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Kathy, you might find trip reports penned by three women aged 50-75 of interest. The following Florence trip reports are located on the site, Slow Travel; all attended the Koine in Florence for at least one week; Colleen and Marian were solo travelers and Earline traveled with her daughter: #1064, #679, #454

JaninLucca is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 03:36 PM
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That's terrific---thanks---will check the SlowTrav site! (Especially helpful since I am 62.....!)
kathrynj is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 06:48 PM
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willit - Did you stay in the shared apartments or a private apartment?
kybourbon is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2008, 08:58 PM
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Kathy,especially not that I read that you want to have fun in the third week, I more and more suggest Frontino as you will enjoy to visit Marche, a very pretty and interesting region of Italy defined "the side B of Tuscany".
I thank Ekscrunchy that found and wrote here the website of the school.
Feel free to e-mail me for further informations, as I live at one hour to drive from Frontino.
Ciao.

Vincenzo

vincenzod is offline  
Jun 24th, 2008, 04:18 AM
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my school was also in the marche. We stayed at the school...they have "apartments" and we had a tiny kitchen, a private bedroom and a private bathroom.

It was a total blast.
wanderlust5 is offline  
Jun 24th, 2008, 04:45 AM
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kybourbon - it was a private apartment, although I had a choice of private, shared or stayig with a family.
willit is offline  

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