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Lesson Plan--Final

Italian Culture

Teacher: Maria Cummaudo
Class: English class where the teacher invites me to expose their students to Italian culture and language.
Proficiency Level in Italian: None
Ethno-Linguistic Composition of class: English Speaker Learners Estimated
Time: 10 minutes
Date: December 10, 1996
Age Level: High School

Teaching Objectives:

Materials Needed:

Learning/Teaching Activities:

Warm-up / Introduction

(1 minutes) I will start talking in Italian and saying that we want to go to eat at an Italian restaurant. But first we will try to be familiar with some type of pasta. I will use the following pattern: Cosa sono questi? Questi sono gli spaghetti.

queste? Questi sono i rigatoni Questi sono i fusilli Queste sono le linguine. Questi sono i pomodori


Activity 1: I will show a short video clip on different kinds of pasta (3 minutes) and on the food Italian use in their meals.

Activity 2: I will ask again the questions I asked in the introduction (2 minutes) showing more food and giving more words:

Cosa sono questi? Questi sono gli spaghetti. queste? Questi sono i rigatoni. Questi sono i fusilli. Questi sono i capellini. Queste sono le linguine. Queste sono le farfalle. Questi sono i pomodori.

Cos'è questo/questa? Questa è la cipolla Questo è il basilico NO BASILICA!! Questo è il parmigiano Questo è l'olio d'oliva Questa è la focaccia.


(3 minute) I will ask the class to recognize the objects. I will ask the same questions I modeled for them. I will ask them only a few items. I will ask them to practice in pairs.

(1 minute) I will tell them to try to pronounce and say the Italian names for the pasta they will have the chance to see in an Italian restaurant or in the grocery store. I do not know if I will say this in Italian. My purpose is not to practice listening/comprehension, but expose them to Italian culture. Moreover, I want them to have fun in practicing the nouns we went over today. For this reason, I want to make sure they really understand what I am asking them to do for assignment instead of having only a general idea. I will give them a piece of focaccia in order to... "taste" Italian culture!


If I do not have enough time, I will shorten the list of names to learn and may be the time they have to practice names. If the media services forget to bring the TV and the VCR (or if it does not work), I will use more time for practice by distributing the students a few recipe books. They will be teasting each other by looking at the pictures and matching the words previously learned.


As a whole I think he went quite well. I wanted the students to be excited about Italian culture, language and food. And it was so! There did not seem to be enough time and therefore I was not able to expose the students to all the words I wanted to. Anyway, the words I gave them were enough to get a feeling of the different types of pasta. I did not want to cut the video since it was an important tool to actually take them to Italy (the video clip was two and a half minutes long). My classmates were very kind in letting me go first. However, they had already set up their materials on the board in order to save time. At the beginning, I thought that the space left was enough for my teaching materials. However, while I was teaching I realized it wasn't. I had the impression that my flyers were too close and maybe a little confusing. Even though the focus was not on the language, if the flyers had been better organized, it would have made the lesson run more smoothly. I thought than the topic was good for high school students. Everybody tends to be enthusiastic about food, especially Italian food. The students showed the expected reaction to the lesson. Some other alternative ideas for the lesson plan are the following:

1. Bring less items--this was hard to do because I wanted the students feel and have the three dimensional objects in order to almost "touch" the little Italian "c" they were going to be exposed to. If the language were the object, I would have brought a big poster with food items in it.

2. Open the different packages of pasta and bring only a few samples of them to pass around the students. I could also draw the different samples from a basket (or make them draw the samples). I felt a little overwhelmed by the many items I had to bring, also because I was worried for something extra-curriculum. Teachers, like everybody else, may have extra worries. It is helpful if they do not let the teaching materials overwhelm them! As much as verbal flow is concerned, I should have moved around more while showing the food. Again, the short time was a factor!

This morning I was tempted to change the topic of my lesson and talk about fashion. I guess can still write another lesson plan and put it in my folder for next time!!

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1997 © Dr. Lynn E. Henrichsen
Department of Linguistics
Brigham Young University
Last Updated: Saturday, June 7, 1997