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Summer Language Courses, 2024

Learn the language of "la dolce vita" with our native Italian-speaking Instructors.

Whether you are new to the Italian language, totally fluent, or everything in between we are delighted to welcome you. No matter what your goals are for learning Italian: business, travel, pleasure, or because you love the sound of this beautiful language and would like to understand it better, we offer a variety of classes throughout the year that may meet your needs.


All our classes are conducted in Italian by instructors who are university qualified native speakers. These instructors provide training in all basic communication skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing, with a systematic study of grammar.  

Here is the overall schedule plan for courses offered each quarter, although subject
 to change given teacher availability and registration. 






The Summer 8-Week Session starts mid-June.  Registration is now closed.  The Next Session will be in the Fall.  Sign-up for the newsletter if you would like to be alerted to when classes are posted and registration is open.  

The Zoom link for online classes will be sent to students registered and paid in full.  In the event that a class does not reach a minimum enrollment, it will be canceled and students will be offered a full-refund or an opportunity to move to another class.

See our MEMBERSHIP PAGE to renew or become a new member

*contact us prior to registration to get the discount code*


Nothing to book right now. Check back soon.

See our MEMBERSHIP PAGE to renew or become a new member


Class Description
Beginnng Italian

Online Class Schedule Fall 2020

Beginning Italian (offered in Fall & Winter)

Beginning Italian

(CEF A1.1 as per the Common European Framework Reference)

Course Description

This course is recommended for those want to start learning or have a minimal grasp of the Italian language. Beginning speaking, listening, comprehension, reading, and writing skills will be covered. 

Course Goal

At the end of this course you’ll be able to introduce yourself, shop, order in a restaurant, count, and take a train or a bus. You’ll conjugate regular verbs in the present tense.

Required Text

Italian: A Self-teaching Guide by Edoardo Lébano. We will tentatively cover Chapters 1-5

Reading: Arianna Maria Giliberto - “Un viaggio pieno di sorprese”

Intermediate Italian (offered in Fall & Winter)

(CEF A1.2 as per the Common European Framework Reference)

Course Description

This course is a continuation of the beginning class. Its objective is to further develop students' competency in writing, reading and oral communication. Students will refine the use of verbs, grammar and idiomatic expressions, increase vocabulary and speak with greater confidence. 

Course Goal

At the end of this course you will be able to express opinions and describe activities using present, future and past tenses. You will be able to use simple and combined prepositions.

Required Text

Italian: A Self-teaching Guide by Edoardo Lébano. We will tentatively cover Chapters 6-10

Reading: tbd

Advanced Italian (offered in Fall & Winter)

Advanced Italian

Course Description

This course will deepen students’ knowledge of Italian language by learning more complex grammatical structures such as the impersonal construction, the comparative and superlative, the conditional, gerund, past perfect and subjunctive tenses, and a richer vocabulary. The teacher will put particular emphasis on conversation and listening comprehension. 

Course Goal

At the end of this Level students will master the use of different verb tenses, improve fluency and vocabulary.

Required Text

A Self-teaching Guide by Edoardo Lébano. We will cover tentatively Chapters 11-13

Advanced Italian 2 (offered in Winter)

Advanced Italian 2

Course Description

This course will cover the more complex grammar structures, such as: hypothetical sentence, passive construction, pronominal verbs, “verbi causativi”- make/let/have/get, additional use of subjunctive, and “passato/ trapassato remoto”, that correspond to the last two chapters of the text book. Furthermore, students will be engaged in conversation - with help/support from the instructor. Students need to have taken an advanced level class or Advanced 1.

Course Goal

Students will work on improving their fluency and comprehension and consolidating what has been studied so far. The instructor will reinforce complex grammar structures studied through conversation, exercises, and games. 

Required Text

A Self-teaching Guide by Edoardo Lébano. We will cover tentatively Chapters 14-15 & Reading

Conversational Italian (offered in Fall & Winter)

Conversational Italian

Course Description

This course is the best way to practice your Italian. It is recommended for all who want to practice together in a friendly group at a comfortable pace. Conversation, pronunciation, Idiomatic expressions and vocabulary will be practiced in a fun environment to improve speaking and fluency.

Course Goal

There will be various topics for discussion including articles from Italian magazines and readings from Italian literature. In this class students are encouraged to speak only in Italian.

Required Text

None. Reading material will be provided by the Instructor.

Reading & Practice for Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced Students (offered in Spring)

Reading &

Course Description

Each Spring, students at each level will be able to apply what they have learned and practice their Italian reading and conversation skills.  

Course Goal

To solidify comprehension and grammar skills with more opportunities to practice.

Required Text

t.b.d. by each teacher, appropriate for each skill level. (see specific course descriptions)

Laboratorio di Italiano (new Online Advanced Class)

Laboratorio di Italiano

Course Description

In this course, we will cover a variety of activities to read, speak, and write in Italian at an advanced level*.  We will read Italian articles and sections of Italian novels, practice writing and summarizing what we read, conversing, listening and comprehension. We will also listen to Italian music and play games. *Students will need to have already completed an advanced level class prior to taking this course.

Course Goal

Participants will deepen their knowledge of grammar, improve fluency and comprehension, expand their Italian vocabulary, and learn more about the Italian culture.

Required Text

Course material will be given by the instructor prior to each session.

Advanced 2
Advanced Lab

Classes will be a mix of Online Only & In-Person Only.
Please read carefully before selecting the best class for you.

Conversation Class Location:
550 Water Street, Suite A
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

*In-Person Beginning Class Location:
United Methodist Church 
221 Thunderbird Dr, Aptos, CA 95003




Mirella Savegnago, language instructor

was born and raised in Italy and is a graduate in education and psychology from Catholic University, Milan, and is qualified as a teacher in Italy. She has spent many years in marketing and management world-wide, but since she arrived in California in 2017 has been teaching Italian, both to groups and individuals, as well as Italian cooking. She is currently teaching beginning, intermediate, and advanced classes for Dante. She is fluent in English and has studied French, Spanish, and Mandarin. She travels to Italy several times a year where she and her husband Francesco have a home, where her son lives. Her daughter is a UC Davis. graduated. If students have concerns about ability levels, feel free to contact this instructor.



was born and raised in Verona, Italy. She moved to the USA in 1998 with her husband, who is from Bologna, and their daughter. She has been teaching Italian and Italian cooking classes in every city she and her family have lived in the U.S. These include: Cincinnati, Ohio-Amici School, Santa Cruz, California-Dante Alighieri Society, Jacksonville, Florida-University of North Florida Continuing Education, and Melbourne, Florida and Irvine, California, her current home, where she conducted private classes. Francesca travels to Italy several times per year to see her family and friends. Her daughter is a student at the George Washington D.C.Law School. Francesca enjoys reading historical non-fiction and biographies, cooking, and playing mahjong.  If students have questions, feel free to contact her.



was born and raised in Veneto, Italy and graduated in Psychology of Marketing in 2005 from La Sapienza University in Rome. After moving to New York to learn English and have new experiences, she met her future husband and they moved to California. They have been living in Capitola since 2006 where her husband has his own business. They have two children who attend Twin Lakes School. Since her arrival in California, Anna, also a fluent Spanish speaker, has been teaching Italian to both individuals and groups of students. About her teaching experience, Anna says: "I discovered I have a true passion for teaching the beautiful language and culture of my country." If students have concerns about ability levels feel free to contact this instructor.



has been teaching the Dante Conversational Italian class since 2009. Irene was born and raised in Chieri, Piemonte, Italy, where she graduated with a degree in Accounting. She also speaks French and Spanish. Irene returns to Italy every year to visit her family and to keep well connected to her Italian heritage. Over the years, Irene has enjoyed tutoring family members and friends in Italian. She lives in Soquel with her husband, Peter, and their two bilingual children, Simone and Sabrina. Irene is the Business Manager for Santa Cruz Ear, Nose and Throat Medical Group in Santa Cruz and also helps her husband with their business, Soquel Vineyards. If students have concerns about ability levels, feel free to contact this instructor.

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