5 Games will help you to learn Italian
The best games to help learn Italian are those in which you forget about everything else. If you are totally absorbed by the challenge, more attracted by the scoring points than by the grammar book, learning comes easily by playing!
Some students may have resistance to get “involved”, maybe they are more attached to lecture-style instruction, the grammar topic and the written exercises.
Even if we find satisfaction in solving crosswords, sudoku or candy crash, in adult life we tend to forget that “play” – in the many different forms it takes – is an effective form of learning for humans of all ages.
The benefits of play for children are well established. The game helps the child to understand their abilities and feel good about themselves, developing self-esteem. If the game is fun, children are very absorbed in what they are doing. Similarly, adults can also take advantage of the fun of games to learn Italian.
We are all born with a biological urge to play. Humans “are designed to find fulfilment and creative growth through play” (Play: How It Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul, Stuart Brown). Curios? Here’s Stuart Brown TED “Best of the Web” pick, featuring a remarkable idea freely available on the internet.
Keep scrolling to discover how to learn Italian while playing Games.
Learning Italian while playing Games
1.Games app in Italian. Online games can be an effective way to practice every day for a few minutes, or even hours if the game is particularly addictive. Like any app on your phone, they are suitable for breaking down dead times, to entertain you in the moments of solitude between one activity and another.
You can experiment with several and then continue with the one that suits you best. Have you ever thought of downloading games in Italian to your phone? For example, you can try the Italian version of Pokemon Go, combining the exercise of Italian with the discovery of the city you are visiting.
2. Storytelling. Imagining and creating a story is important for practising syntax and vocabulary in Italian. If the idea reminds you too much of a traditional task, keep in mind that storytelling activities that involve emotions help us to remember.
There are different modes of storytelling that we also experience in our Italian for foreigners group classes. One of the favourite activities, to be experienced even in an evening with friends, is cadavre exquis, a collective game of surrealist origin.
It consists in having several people compose a sentence (without anyone being able to know the intervention of the other) in the noun-adjective-verb-noun-adjective sequence. The name of the game derives from the first sentence that was obtained in Paris in 1925: le cadavre exquis boira le vin nouveau (“the exquisite corpse will drink the new wine”).
3. Table games. Don’t just think about bingo, the classic Christmas dinner game, box games are the ideal activity for two people or more. One of the classic games is Scarabeo, the Italian variant of Scrabble, with slightly different rules. The winner is the one who scores the most points by creating meaningful words on the grid, obviously in Italian.
If you are in a larger group and have an intermediate level, you can challenge yourself to Dixit, a board game that focuses heavily on creativity. Each player in turn must describe the illustrations – beautiful and enigmatic – of the chosen card explicitly, but not too much. The goal is to make some players guess the card but not everyone in order to earn points. An absolutely addicting game even for the most sceptical.
4. Simulation games Among the games to learn Italian for foreigners, simulation games represent the exercise method that most recalls the theatre. The aim is to transfer the skills and knowledge learned from a simulated context to real-life situations, for example, to work activities. The simplest example is that of dialogues in everyday situations, such as at the baker, in a restaurant, or during a job interview.
They imply a real putting into play of the students who have to play a role and at times may not feel comfortable with it.
It is also important to remember here that simulation games are planned and implemented to meet specific learning objectives. So don’t be afraid to free the player in you – it’s good for your language skills!
5. Humour. As the example of great innovators and scientists show us, when we come across something funny and unusual, our attention peaks. Even at work, humour is associated with better job performance, satisfaction, group cohesion, as well as decreased stress.
Humour is also an essential ingredient in learning the Italian language. You can cultivate humour with tongue twisters and the funniest Italian idioms. Often the meaning is not understandable with a literal translation. You can train your curiosity by starting with these articles and then continuing your research.