"A Student Hand Book of Italian-Learning Italian through Design" | Learning through graphics

Price:   Rs795 |  17 Jun 2017 3:17 PM GMT  |  Niharika Chhabra

Learning through graphics

Paola Martani is a graduate in philosophy from Università degli Studi di Milano, holding the academic title of ‘Dottore in Philosophy’ as well as a ‘vocational Masters’ in Linguistics, from the same university. Since 2014 she has been the Italian language course coordinator and lecturer at the Italian Embassy Cultural Centre in New Delhi, and since the following year she has been the resident lecturer of Italian Language and Culture in GD Goenka University SOFD – a branch of Politecnico di Milano in Haryana.

In 2016, being a speaker in many international conferences on Architecture and Design, she began to teach Indian Aesthetic Philosophy – a comparison between the Western idea of balance, harmony of shapes, beauty and the Indian corresponding concept—at World School of Design (University) in Sonipat. This dynamic young woman had her first book published here in India and this book is the result of a year of teaching Italian language and culture in India at the GD Goenka University SOFD - a branch of Politecnico di Milano. Paola Martani, with the help of her very dynamic Indian students, decided to utilise their skill in design and combine it with her skill in linguistics, to compile all the notes of the academic year and create a little handbook outlining the main rules of Italian.

As a result, the main objective of this book is to learn Italian by means of design, explaining the use of the language through graphics. It is a visual way of learning with explanation as it happens in classrooms. Paola Martani’s first book on the basics of Italian language and culture is the outcome of her experience of teaching the language in India for over two years. 

Her pedagogical methodology is evident in the simple and fun way she has compiled her notes in the form of this book. Engaging and encouraging her design students at SOFD to use their design skills in this project by lavishly using graphics and pictures to illustrate text was a novel way to engage learners with the Italian language and culture. This book makes the language more accessible and aims to aid learners to express themselves and comprehend Italian by the end of the course. “A convenient handbook for beginners that enables self- learning,” expressed Promil Pande, Dean of GD Goenka University, SOFD.

“More and more young Indians are studying Italian, whether for work or study or just because they like Italian and Italy. It is not a difficult language, but certainly, to learn it you need to study and know how to follow the rules and the many exceptions. Therefore welcome to every new tool – from manuals to exercise books to a booklet of 'notes' like this one prepared with a lot of passion and expertise by Paola Martani, which guides and helps a student to consolidate his/her learning. Her many years of experience as an Italian teacher in India has made it possible to identify the less readily acquired linguistic aspects and at the same time point to a direct and not too complicated way to understand them. Study well and have fun one and all, teachers and students!” said Alessandra Bertini Malgarini, Italian Embassy Cultural Centre Director, New Delhi.

It really looks like the book is going to be a very innovative and all-Indian way of learning Italian. A new bridge for the two countries that share their skills and want to know and learn about each other better: students who want to learn about Italy, for their future profession together with a professor like Paola Martani who did not come to India with only the idea of teaching but also learning. 

Learning the way her students learn, the strategies Indian people need to use to learn the Indian creativity and make a use of it to create something unique in its genre. 

The explanations she has used are very concise, starting from the roots of the language – the alphabets, the main verbs used in daily life with all their particularities schematised in a clear way, the nouns, the articles etc and the main vocabulary useful for any daily situation, with examples of conversations – all of these in a very visual and innovative way.

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