5 Questions to ask before choosing a language class

I can’t wait to get back into Italian lessons. I love my Italian school here in San Francisco and give them molto credit for all the conversations I was able to have while in Rome and the Amalfi Coast. One day soon I’ll be back in class. As a language teacher I see specific qualities that help to make a class successful. If you are joining a language class, here are 5 questions to ask before signing up:

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  1. How much of class will be conducted in the target language? Some grammar concepts will need to be explained in English, but a strong teacher knows how to get creative and keep the class going in what we call the “target language.”
  2. What text do the instructors use for the course? Are there good pictures and other visuals? Are there listening components? Does owning the textbook mean that you also have access to online resources for individual practice at home?
  3. Are the classes activity-based or lecture-based? Will you be sitting and taking notes for 2 hours, or will you have the opportunity to move around? (Especially important for evening classes when you might get sleepy.)
  4. Are there opportunities to have real conversations during class time? How do the instructors encourage spoken language in their classes?
  5. Does the teacher or school offer cultural activities?  For example, my Italian school offers film events, book talks, and lots of other fun get-togethers.

Have a great week!

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