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I managed to avoid my fear of language learning when I was younger because studying a foreign language was never a requirement for me when I was in high school and college.

Then the summer before my senior year of college I went on a study abroad course to study art and architecture in Italy and fell in love with the culture.


took a second trip to Italy last spring to take an intensive language course in Florence, figuring that since I planned to make travel to Italy a regular part of my life, it would be nice to learn the language without all of the pressure of grades and exams.

I enrolled at the Koine Center located near the Duomo in Florence. Koine’s teaching method is total immersion with the instructors only speaking Italian in the classroom. I signed up for two weeks worth of group lessons.

Upon arrival at the school I was given a fluency test. The written portion consisted of grammar questions which were mostly fill-in-the-blanks. After completing the written test I was given a private oral assessment and then placed in a beginning level classroom. There were three other students in my class – two Americans and one lady from Germany.

My time at Koine was challenging and fun. We did a variety of lessons from workbooks, basic conversation exercises and listening comprehension.




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