FOREIGN LANGUAGES

Need A Few Good Reasons to Learn Italian? Look No Further!

Contents

  1. Is there any point in learning Italian?
  2. Is Italian a dying language?
  3. What is the relevance of Italian language to your life?
  4. Is Italian or French harder to learn?
  5. Is it better to learn Spanish or Italian?

 

We live in a world with a rich variety of languages. English is the most spoken language on the planet followed by Mandarin, Hindi, Spanish and French. Italian appears all the way down the list in 22nd place. Why learn Italian then? This is a valid question but there is also a valid answer. There are a number of benefits to doing an Italian language course or teaching yourself, and it doesn’t just come down to delicious food, great weather and basically, ‘La Doce Vita’! Although, we admit, this certainly helps! 😊latin inscription

Is there any point in learning Italian?

 

Yes, there is! Here are just a few reasons why.

  • Italian stems directly from Latin. This means that if your child is interested in law, science, medicine, music, art, literature, philosophy or theology they’ll get a head start. 💪The reason is because many of the terms used in these career fields come from Latin.
  • It is related to Romance languages like Spanish, French, Romanian and Portuguese. Once your child studies Italian, they may want to learn more about these other languages. Before you know it, they’ll be reaping the benefits of being bilingual or even multilingual!
  • It’s easy! Well, no language is ever easy to master but it is definitely easier to write than Mandarin and easier to pronounce than French. This will be attractive to some children and will help them overcome the fear of language learning. The phonetics of Italian can be seen from the written word: The general rule is say what you see and few languages can boast this feature.
  • The Italian language and Italy benefits from the fact that the verb tenses pretty much correspond with English grammar and, as the two countries are relatively close, you’ll be able to brush up on your language skills by jumping on a flight that will have you there in around two hours. 🛫
  • Your child will know more about what they’re eating, and this has got to be good for a family evening out! When you go to an Italian restaurant, wouldn’t it be useful for someone to know the cooking terminology so you can understand the menu better? And, let’s face it, food is great motivation to learn anything! 😋
  • The Italian population in the UK has seen a big increase. From 2008 to 2020, the number of Italians living in the UK increased from 101,000 to 311,000 and it shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon!
  • It sounds cool. Come on, you have to admit it! There are few languages that sound as pleasing to the ear as Italian. You could say the same word in English and it wouldn’t sound anywhere near as musical. We think this would stand your child in good stead when they want to impress new people!

 

Is Italian a dying language?

 

This is a difficult question to answer and depends on your viewpoint. What we can say is that Italy benefits from having 60 million native speakers and around 6-10 million others worldwide.

According to data by the British Council, from 2014 to 2019 there was a 30% decline in students taking French and German at GCSE. However, in this same period, languages such as Arabic, Portuguese and Italian grew by more than 10%. 👍

That said, the same report states that there has been a slight decline in state schools offering Italian GCSE (from 9% in 2018 to 7% in 2019). It is worth pointing out that Independent schools are still able to offer a wide range of languages.

And a report by Quartz showed that the number of Americans speaking the language had fallen by 38% between 2001 and 2017. But there are reasons for this. Firstly, there are simply fewer Italian-born US residents today because Italy became more prosperous. Secondly, free movement in the EU meant that migrating to the UK became more popular and therefore, in contrast, the number of Italians grew by nearly 70,000 in approximately the same period.

 

What is the relevance of Italian language to your life?

 

If your child is interested in food, art, culture and the career fields that come from Latin as stated above, then Italian will have relevance to their life. Any language learning will only enhance your child’s understanding of another culture, history and way of life. As a holiday destination, knowing some of the language will mean you get more out of your trip.

 

Is Italian or French harder to learn?

 

Why learn Italian when French is the one that children generally learn at school? Well, although they are both based on Latin and have many similar words, Italian is easier to learn when it comes to pronunciation. It also has fewer letters (21) and there’s no need to use a subject pronoun (I, you, he, she etc when you speak). For these reasons Italian is widely considered to be easier to learn so if your child is thinking of taking a gap year, you might want to point them towards Rome rather than Paris!

 

Is it better to learn Spanish or Italian?

 

Obviously, there are Italian language classes in Italy and Spanish language classes in Spain. Which your child chooses largely comes down to personal choice. It would be unwise to turn down a scholarship in Italy if your child showed a talent for the language and Italian would be the obvious choice if their dream has always been to work for an Italian clothing company. 👚

On the other hand, Spanish is the more spoken language. If they want to travel around South America or if you tend to holiday in Spain as a family, Spanish would be more beneficial.

At the end of the day, if your child is interested in the Italian language, nothing else really matters. They can go to Italian language classes in Italy, learn by themselves or get a GoStudent tutor and enjoy everything the language and country has to offer.

Maybe instead of asking ‘Why learn Italian?’ we should really be asking ‘Why NOT learn Italian?’ 🤔

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