Verb conjugation is often viewed as a challenge for native English speakers, and when learning the Italian language, this is certainly the case. While conjugating verbs may not come naturally, there are many tips you can use to improve your skills in this regard.
Start with the “I,” “You,” and “We” Forms
Generally speaking, these verb forms will be the ones used most often when speaking in Italian, so focusing on them will be beneficial. Naturally, you will want to familiarize yourself with the other forms, but honing in on what you will most likely use in conversation is a fine way to learn the language.
Memorize Key Irregular Verbs
Much like the verb “to be” in English, Italian has a few irregular verbs that do not follow the same standard patterns of conjugation. Fortunately, there are not very many of these irregular verbs, so memorizing how to conjugate them should not be too difficult. In memorizing these irregular verbs, you can limit the impulse to conjugate them as ordinary verbs when you encounter them. A number of these irregular verbs are among the most common verbs used in the language, so memorizing them will be useful no matter what.
Learn the Categories
With the exception of irregular verbs, Italian verbs fall into three categories based on their endings. How you conjugate a verb is dependent on its ending, so verbs with an infinitive form that ends in “-are” will be conjugated differently than a verb that has an “ire” ending in its infinitive form. Once you memorize the irregular verbs and understand how to conjugate the different categories, you should be able to tackle most Italian verbs when it comes to conjugation.
Study & Practice
From worksheets to verbal exercises, studying is important when learning to conjugate Italian verbs. It is advised that you balance studying with actual practice; be sure to engage in an appropriate amount of repetition to drill the correct forms into your head, and take time to practice aloud to ensure you get real world practice. Connecting with native Italian speakers, engaging with an Italian language instructor, or practicing a conversation with a friend who is also learning the language are all great ways to hone your skills in verb conjugation.