MIT Teaches How to Speak Italian and Cook Italian, All in One Course

Sun, 12/08/2013 - 05:00
Cooking teacher

“The participants in this seminar will dive into learning basic conversational Italian, Italian culture, and the Mediterranean diet. Each class is based on the preparation of a delicious dish and on the bite-sized acquisition of parts of the Italian language and culture.  A good diet is not based on recipes only, it is also rooted in healthy habits and in culture. At the end of the seminar the participants will be able to cook some healthy and tasty recipes and to understand and speak basic Italian.”

This class isn’t taught at a cooking school, nor at a language school. It is taught at prestigious MIT by Dr. Paola Rebusco, who has devised a course where she uses cooking to help her students learn Italian. The name of the course is “Speak Italian With Your Mouth Full,” and is part of MIT Experimental Study Group.

Rebusco explains that the course has the advantage of making the language lessons a little less abstract. It gives students a chance to apply what they’ve learned (new vocabulary words, pronunciation, etc.) in a fun and practical context. While learning all the language basics, students also learn how to make fresh pasta, espresso, risotto, pizza, bruschetta and biscotti.

Lectures for the course can be found on the MIT website and on YouTube.

Below, Dr. Rebusco provides an example of how cooking helps teach the language:

And here you can watch one of her lessons: