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Teaching guide

Introducing La Mappa Misteriosa
The course
La Mappa Misteriosa is a course for beginners, designed to match the Breakthrough Level of the Languages Ladder (external link).

The episodes
There are 12 episodes, each covering language topics such as directions, shopping, etc. Find a full outline in the syllabus.

Each episode is a combination of video with language teaching and practice, focused on developing communicative skills. The language is presented in small bite-sized chunks. Learners are encouraged to practise and to speak out loud to the characters they encounter.

Each episode is accompanied by a consolidation learning section, bringing together all the key vocabulary, explaining the grammar structures and providing extra practice.

Learners can also review the key scenes, tagged with the key language objective, by using the green bar at the bottom of the video screen.
Useful topics and grammar points
Vocabulary and grammar
The key language has been introduced in small functional chunks per episode, focusing on one communicative topic. The key words and phrases and main grammar points are presented in lessons, as well as exercises for practice.

The topics are revisited and built upon in different episodes. For example, in Episode 1 the concept of masculine and feminine is introduced and this is proposed again in other episodes with more complex structures and vocabulary. The same goes for other grammar points and communicative functions, building up on language learnt in earlier episodes.
Language at a higher level
Incidental language
The language in the dramatised scenes goes beyond breakthrough level. These sections should be followed with the help of subtitles, or just listened to for language familiarisation and the general gist.

Even so, they have been scripted with the needs of learners and teachers in mind: the language has been contained to keep more complex structures, such as the past tense, subjunctives or subordinate clauses to a minimum.
Ideas for the classroom
Classroom exploitation
First, have a look at the user guide to find out the essential details. If you have the right set-up, such as an interactive whiteboard or a projector with speakers, you could use it for whole class teaching.

As the episodes contain various themes, we recommend allowing enough time to go over each topic with the students, e.g. two sessions of around 30 minutes for a class of absolute beginners. Learners can then be encouraged to watch the full episode or some of the key scenes more than once.

There are a number of activities you can try:
- Turn off the English subtitles for comprehension
- Use the video conversations with the characters as role-plays
- Pause the video at any point and students can describe what they see or find words starting with a specific letter

At a higher level:
- Discuss what has just happened
- Think of what will happen next

If you don't have access to a computer suite or whiteboard, then La Mappa Misteriosa can be used as homework to either prepare for or reinforce class work.
Learners at a higher level
Beyond beginners
Although the course has been devised for absolute beginners, learners at a higher level can also benefit from it. They have the option to skip the learning scenes, if they don't need to be reminded of the more basic aspects of the language. They can also enjoy the dramatised scenes with the help of the Italian subtitles, or switch them off to improve their listening skills.
External links
Explore the episodes
Explore all twelve episodes in this Italian drama for beginners
Syllabus and exercises
See a full breakdown of the episodes' learning topics and exercises