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  1. #1
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    Best Learn a Language Tapes?

    I am hoping to go to Italy on my vacation (called and booked a bike tour, but I have to wait 72 hours to find out if they have space for me). I have about two months. I will spend a few days on my own traveling between Rome and Florence and seeing the sites, and so I want to do a little language course. I'm not looking for fancy and intensive grammatical beauty, just a simple quick and dirty names of foods and simple verbs and how to find the bathroom and check into a hotel and buy a train ticket kind of things.

    Has anybody used a language series (reasonably priced, hoping not to spend more than $35 or so) I can listen to as I walk to work they found useful? It seems like most of the language courses I saw on Amazon are CD-ROMs you use at the computer, but I want cassettes or audio CDs so I can listen on my way walking to work.

    The 72 hour wait is killing me! I am getting really really excited about going and if it doesn't work out I'll be so sad!

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  3. #2
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    i can't recommend a great one, but do NOT get Barons EZ italian. It is worthless, basically they don't go 'bon giorno' good morning they start with a conversation between two people, and then expect you to follow along although it's entirely in italian and there's a companion book but there's no translated paragraph of what they're saying, just a list of vocab words with ciao = goodbye or something, and you're supposed to follow along. I did not find it 'ez' at all.

    I would try to find something online, in fact the most helpful one i found was targeted at children, but it was all about saying a word in english and italian and conjugating it etc, the stories are about a little boy going to italy, but you'll use the same kinds of words. i think the first 10 lessons are free, but you can continue by paying and it even has files to play to hear the woman and the boy talking.

    jt

  4. #3
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    I've only purchased long-term learning language tools so can't help you there.. One tip I have though is that there aren't many cassette/CD formats available. You may just have to go with books. During lunch and before bed are good times to read up, and also if you commute by public transport.. I heard the Dummies series are pretty ok.

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by candice
    I've only purchased long-term learning language tools so can't help you there.. One tip I have though is that there aren't many cassette/CD formats available. You may just have to go with books. During lunch and before bed are good times to read up, and also if you commute by public transport.. I heard the Dummies series are pretty ok.
    I'll definitely be doing books too, I'm a visual learner and have to see words written down to learn them. Breakfast and right before bed are my reading times, and then I have a 25 minute walk to work that will be perfect for listening to tapes.

    The Dummies book for Spanish was terrible, but that's possibly because my Spanish is already passable and I just wanted to brush up and it was at way too simplistic a level. Since I have no Italian it might be helpful for me to start with.

  6. #5
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    Re: Best Learn a Language Tapes?

    Quote Originally Posted by nicegirl512
    It seems like most of the language courses I saw on Amazon are CD-ROMs you use at the computer, but I want cassettes or audio CDs so I can listen on my way walking to work.
    I've never learned a language with *just* tapes, and I've never done Italian at all, but as a small tip -- when I took Portuguese about a year and a half ago, the professor gave us all the language files on a CD-ROM and I just downloaded it onto my computer and burned it onto about 10 CDs. If you have a CD burner (or a friend with a CD burner), that's a good option.

    Another thing to think about: If you live near a college or university, check to see if they offer continuing education classes that you can take once a week for about an hour during the evenings without enrolling in the school. Many community colleges and large universities do this, and I've taken French that way. It's a minimal time commitement, and they're often quite affordable. They may only offer French and Spanish, though, so if you can't take an Italian class that way, you should also find out if the school offers Italian language classes. It's a dirty little secret that full-time language instructors at even the most prestigious universities are woe-fully underpaid, and by getting in touch with the departnment you might be able to find someone you can pay to meet with you for an hour once a week to practice what you're learning from the tapes and go over any questions you have. Your best options would be an Italian language instructor or a graduate student, but in a pinch even an advanced (tutor-level) Spanish student would work.

    If you can meet with someone in person using either of these two methods, you'll be able to "stretch" your language tapes much further and learn a lot more, even if the quality of the tapes is bad.

    Good luck -- let us know if you get to go!

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by sun bear
    I would try to find something online
    I didn't even think of this, jt! Turns out the BBC has a beginning Italian course online, I don't know if you found it and are still interested. http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/italian/lj/menu.shtml I haven't tried it yet (wait til I get home), but I'm assuming it's fairly high quality and it appears to be free! (I'll still get books and tapes, though.)

  8. #7
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    try the library - sometime you can get cassettes or cds with things like that on it....

  9. #8
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    thanks this was super helpful :)
    way better than 'ez italian'

    jt

  10. #9
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    Well, when I moved to Germany, the only thing that worked for me was total submersion. I HAD to learn German because I lived out on the economy away from the military base. But I did get some educational cd's. The one's I really learned from was from a company called Pimsleurs (sp?), however I don't know what other languages they did. And Fodors had a decent disc or tape set. I think the best tool, though, was my translation and phrase book. Invest in one that is divided into thorough sections about airports, restaurants and eating, shopping, accomodations, asking directions (super helpful!), and one that gives cultural tips and facts.
    If you haven't been to Italy before, Florence is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful cities ever. I have been to Florence twice and WILL go back one day!!
    Hope some of that ramble helped!
    Jennjitsu

  11. #10
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    You can search the language tapes using search engine. This provides the information in right way and help you to buy the language tapes that helps to learn the languages.
    samson smith
    Wind Chimes
    samson[dot]smith009[at]gmail[dot]com


 
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