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Lesson Plan: Italian For Beginners: Food at the Market

written by: J Sarah Metzker Erdemir • edited by: Rebecca Scudder • updated: 8/2/2012

This is a lesson designed for beginning learners of Italian of any age. Using words for food, learners will practice articles and the 'there is/there are' construction in a short role-play. A media file containing food and drink vocabulary is attached.

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    Lesson Goal

    In this lesson, students will be introduced to vocabulary for food found at the market and practice basic Italian statements and questions with “c’è/ci sono" (there is/there are). This lesson will also provide learners with an opportunity to practice masculine and feminine articles.

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    Print out this list of words from the media gallery, and have students study Italian food and drink vocabulary as homework before the lesson. Cut out pictures of different kinds of food. Make sure there are masculine, feminine, singular, and plural food words. You should have enough different pictures for each student to have at least five. Here are some suggestions of food pictures to bring:

    apple la mela

    pears le pere

    orange l’arancia

    garlic l’aglio

    onion la cipolla

    green beans i fagioli

    cucumber il cetriolo

    fish il pesce

    beef steak la bistecca

    chicken il pollo

    prawns gli scampi

    Many additional word suggestions are in the downloadable file.

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    The Lesson

    Show the pictures of food to the students and elicit which ones they already know. Be sure to elicit the articles as well. Give the students the Italian words for the foods they don’t know, and elicit the articles for each.

    Model/review “c’è/ci sono" constructions in the positive and negative with questions and answers. Have these examples on the board for students to refer to during the lesson:

    C’è una mela? Is there an apple?

    Si, c’è una mela/No, non c’è una mela Yes, there is an apple/No, there isn’t an apple

    Ci sono fagioli? Are there green beans?

    Si, ci sono fagioli/No, non ci sono fagioli Yes, there are green beans/No, there aren’t green beans

    Put the students in pairs and give each student at least five pictures of food. Make sure the students have different foods from their partners. Tell them they are going role-play a trip to the market, with one student as the food seller and the other as the customer. Instruct the students not to show their food pictures to each other.

    The customers ask the sellers if they have various foods, and the sellers answer whether they have them or not. If the seller has the food, she should give it to the customer. Let the students practice the sentences and questions for 5-10 minutes, then have them switch roles.

    Media File: Italian Vocabulary for Beginners: Food & Drink

    Other Italian food words and phrases for beginners