ITAL101 Beginning Italian: Level I - Section A, Patrizia Bonucci, Spring 2020 | SACI College of Art & Design Florence

ITAL101 Beginning Italian: Level I - Section A, Patrizia Bonucci, Spring 2020

This course is designed for students who are studying Italian for the first time. It is divided into two parts: theory and oral practice. There will be several grammar tests to evaluate how much grammar has been learned and a few short compositions. In addition, there will be readings from the textbook Prego! An Invitation to Italian, eighth edition, by Lazzarino, and from other Italian texts proposed by the teacher. The theoretical part of the course will be accompanied by a series of lessons dedicated exclusively to conversation. Each Spring, students partake in a conversation exchange with Italian students from the University of Florence.

More precisely, the following communicative acts will be taken into consideration:

  • Introducing oneself, greeting, thanking someone and asking for forgiveness
  • Expressing emotional states and feelings
  • Inviting, accepting, declining and asking
  • Asking someone to repeat or clarify something
  • Telling a story, describing something, gathering information, knowing and not knowing


In compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act Textbook Provision, SACI provides, when possible, the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and retail price of required and recommended reading. Students are encouraged to wait until they get to Florence before purchasing the Italian Language textbook. If there are not enough copies in the library, they can be purchased at the English-language bookstore Paperback Exchange (be sure to tell them you are a SACI student).

Lazzarino, Graziana, Prego! An Invitation to Italian, 8th edition, McGraw Hill, 2011. (Don't purchase the workbook or CD.)
ISBN 9780073386256 (Retail price: $204.67)



From Monday, January 13 to Friday, January 17


Alphabet and sounds. Nouns: gender and number.
Subject personal pronouns, the present tense of the verb essere (to be). The present tense of the verb avere (to have).

Communicative acts

Introducing oneself, greeting and thanking someone. Addressing someone using the Lei or tu form.


From Monday, January 20 to Friday, January 24


Definite and indefinite articles. Idiomatic expressions using avere: physical sensations, feelings, age. Affirmative, negative and interrogative sentences.

Communicative acts

Expressing emotional states of being and feelings.


From Monday, January 27 to Friday, January 31


Qualificative and demonstrative adjectives. C'è (there is) and com'è (what is something/someone like). Introduction to the present tense of regular verbs.

Communicative acts

Describing oneself, other people, things and places.


From Monday, February 3 to Friday, February 7


The present tense of regular verbs. The present tense of frequently used irregular verbs. Adverbs. possessive adjectives. Time.

Communicative acts

Talking about daily life experiences. Understanding and telling time.


From Monday, February 10 to Friday, February 14


Pronouns, adjectives and adverbs. Present + da + expression of time. Simple and articulated prepositions.

Communicative acts

Inviting, accepting, declining and asking.


From Monday, February 17 to Friday, February 21


The difference between conoscere and sapere (to know). The passato prossimo of transitive and intransitive verbs.

Communicative acts

Knowing and not knowing. Talking about past events.


From Monday, February 24 to Friday, February 28


Irregular past participles. Time expressions.

Communicative acts

Telling in the past.


Midterm Exam

MIDTERM EXAM. Written part: grammar.


MIDTERM BREAK (February 29 - March 8)


From Monday, March 9 to Friday, March 13


Direct and indirect pronouns. The verb piacere (to like)

Communicative acts

Expressing preferences.


From Monday, March 16 to Friday, March 20


Reflexive verbs. Reciprocal construction.

Communicative acts

Describing one's own day by using reflexive and reciprocal verbs.


From Monday, March 23 to Friday, March 27


Introduction to the imperfect tense (imperfetto).

Communicative acts

Talking about past events.


From Monday, March 30 to Friday, April 3


The indicative imperfect tense: differences in usage between imperfetto and passato prossimo.

Communicative acts

Talking about one's own childhood.


From Monday, April 6 to Friday, April 10


Workshop Language through the Arts at Palazzo Strozzi/Film by a contemporary Italian director and discussion.



From Monday, April 13 to Friday, April 17


General Review of the course.
April 13th Easter Monday, SACI is closed. A make-up class will be scheduled with the instructor.


From Monday, April 20 to Friday, April 24


Final Exam

FINAL EXAM: Written Part: Grammar and a short Composition; Oral Part: Conversation with Instructor.


General Safety & Emergency Instructions

Click here for a pdf of SACI's General Safety & Emergency Instructions.

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