You know that old saying about ‘doctors making the worst patients’?
Well that’s me: I’m a teacher who hates being taught!
I just don’t have the patience for it, and anyway, tend to assume I know better and could get there quicker on my own…
I don’t suppose it’s true, but that’s the sort of learner I am. Faced with something I don’t know, I’ll have a stab at it and see what happens.
What about you? Are you a ‘work it out for yourself’ sort of person?
Or would you rather find an expert and get a proper explanation from her?
Beh, here’s a test to help you decide.
Today’s free Italian grammar exercise is on ‘gerunds’. If your first thought is ‘Gerald? Who’s he?’ then read on.
As you find out more about gerunds, think about your reactions and preferences, and what sort of learner that makes you.
The exercise is here. It compares two sorts of ‘gerunds’, the ‘semplice’ and the ‘composto’.
Stop a second.
Are you starting to sweat anxiously at the mention of those three ‘grammary’ words, ‘gerund’, ‘semplice’ and ‘composto’?
Or did you immediately click on the exercise link to see if you could figure it the heck out, without any more boring explanations?
If it’s the former, you’d probably prefer to read up on the topic before trying the exercise, right?
Not to worry – ‘taking a look at our grammar index, you’ll find some material to help you’
(Why the apostrophes? Ah ha! It’s a clue!)
The grammar index has these materials to help you:
Gerundio / Gerunds
- gerundio semplice (Lesson – C1)
- gerundio composto (Lesson – C1)
- gerundio: presente o passato? (Exercise – C1)
- gerundio o participio? (Exercise – C1)
So did you feel the irresistable urge to click on the lessons covering ‘semplice’ and ‘composto’ forms???
Or were you, like, ‘Nah, can’t be bothered. I’ll try the exercise and see if I can work it out.’
There, now you know what sort of learner you are!
Which brings me to the point (other than today’s exercise, of course.)
Next week we’ll start a 10-day promotion on online Italian lessons.
There’ll be a nice discount to encourage you to give this way of learning Italian a try. The minimum is just the one lesson, so you can see if it works for you.
Anyone with a reasonable Internet connection can benefit from personalised lessons with one of our team of experienced native-speaker Italian teachers.
IF they understand their own learning style.
And IF they communicate their preferences to their teacher.
Teachers are not telepathic, you know. They can’t read your minds. Or maybe they can, but it’s sure harder for them if they don’t know you.
Do you, for example, want a lesson on gerunds, with explanations and practice?
Something planned in advance by the teacher, with logical, sequential steps aimed at deepening your knowledge and giving you structured practice?
No problem. If that’s what you want, just ask.
Maybe though, you’d prefer not to spend time on explanations, when you could in any case read up on it for yourself. Perhaps you’d rather spend the time talking in Italian and getting feedback on your mistakes?
That’s good too.
Just as long as the teacher knows.
(Also possible, typical even, is a combination of the two approaches: presentation + practice.)
What’s certain though is that knowing your own learning preferences and communicating them to your online teacher, will help you get the most value from your online lessons.
Details of the promotion in Monday’s article.
So, buon fine settimana!
It’s effectively the last weekend of the summer for me, so I’ll be taking the kids out to swim off our boat, then later shopping for a barbecue…
Hope you’ll be doing something fun too!