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Learning to write Chinese Characters

Typing is so easy, is handwriting really an important part of learning a language? You bet it is, especially for Chinese! Learn why writing characters correctly actually matters, plus the right ways to study (it's not copying characters over and over)...

25 Commonly-used Idioms in the Corporate World

In the world of business, idioms are constantly being used in English-speaking workplaces. Learn what they mean and examples for using them effectively! "Start off on the right foot" and read more…


Skyrocket your Vocabulary with italki!

Put away the flash cards, and turn off your smartphone app. There are better ways to build your vocabulary! Here we discuss ways to utilize your italki sessions with innovative-yet-practical ways to skyrocket your vocabulary…

Bullfighting in Spain

Bullfighting has been an integral part of Spanish culture for the past centuries, but these days it sometimes becomes a controversial topic. Learn the basics of different types of bullfighting (including encierros and bous al carrer) and arguments from both sides here...


Slavic and Latin American Worlds: Breaking down the barriers

What's the greatest reward you can get from learning new languages? Here are my stories of how speaking another's native language has opened up new worlds to me, and how language learning brings people together...

How I Learned to be “una chiacchierona”: Finding the keys to conversation in Gubbio

Take a tour with la studentessa matta into Italy, exploring the wonders of its rich culture and traditions. “Life is like a box of chocolates… you never know what you’re gonna get.” So is the opportunity to speak with an Italian… you never know where the experience will take you…

An Overview of the Historical and Political Background to the Independence Referendum in Scotland

On 18 September 2014, the people of Scotland will vote “Yes” or “No” to a simple referendum question : Should Scotland become an independent country? Learn a brief and neutral summary of the historical and political background to this momentous vote; readers need no prior knowledge of the history and politics of the UK.

Let's Go Hiking ... in Russian!

Have you ever been on a hiking trip anywhere? Are you tempted to go in the near future? Do you want to learn special hiking-related vocabulary in Russian? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this article might be of interest for you!


El uso del “Tú”, el “Usted” y el “Vos” en Español

Este es el primer artículo en español de italki dedicado a todos los estudiantes que se encuentran en el proceso de aprendizaje del idioma. Aprovecharé también para aclarar una duda muy común entre las personas que están aprendiendo español: << ¿Cuándo uso “tú” y cuándo uso “usted”? >>

What You Don't Know About Obrigado

"Obrigado" is a magic word that can open many doors for you, but you have to fully understand how to use it in context, in order to avoid saying the wrong thing to the wrong people. Here's how Portuguese speakers REALLY use "Obrigado"...

Read and Speak Portuguese in No Time: 8 Suggestions

Are you interested in learning Portuguese? Here are 8 things you can use to incorporate Portuguese into your daily life and keep yourself practicing a little every day. Before long, you'll be glad you did!


No More Excuses: Three popular language-learning myths debunked

We often make excuses when attempting to learn new languages, but sometimes these excuses are just a mind game! Not enough time? Not enough money? Here we debunk the prevalent language-learning myths so that you will be confident in reaching your goals…

Chinese Sentences Using the 把( ba ) Construction

The word 把 (bǎ) in Chinese has many uses and the 把 construction is one of the most frequently used patterns. Here we diagram the rules for using 把, as well as outline the common mistakes people make, and what you should say instead!...


Why Schools Get it Wrong, but You Got it Right

A lot of us have studied foreign languages for countless hours in the classroom, but does that really prepare us to really use the language? How can we get past the textbooks and exams to rediscover our inborn natural ability for language learning? Remember learning your very first language ...

Ustedes, Vosotros, Vosotras, and YOU: Second-person plural pronouns in Spanish

Why are there so many ways to refer to the second-person plural in Spanish, when in English there is only one? How do you choose which one to use? Study the uses of vosotros, vosotras, and ustedes in common speech here…