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Intermediate Language Courses

Adult Intermediate courses (B1–B2) typically have previous-level courses as prerequisites.

CLICK HERE for more about levels and curriculum.


Categories: , , , ,

Intermediate Language Courses

Adult Intermediate level language courses (B1–B2) typically have previous-level courses as prerequisites. CLICK HERE for more about levels and curriculum.

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Dr. Valentina Asciutti

Valentina Asciutti was born in Pescara, the city of flamboyant Italian poet and writer Gabriele D’Annunzio, a lovely town on the Adriatic Coast, in the Abruzzo region. 

Valentina’s background is in Classics. She attended Liceo Classico in her hometown and proceeded to receive a BA in Classics at Università di Chieti. In 2003 she moved to the United Kingdom where she completed a Master of Arts in Classics at Durham University and then moved to London where she was awarded a PhD in Classics at King’s College London. After completing her PhD she embraced the new and cutting edge Digital Humanities field, learning how to best apply modern technologies, software tools and digital methods to the study of Humanities, in particular Latin, Classical Literature, History and Archaeology. She was a Research Associate at the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London for five years before moving to the US in 2015. 

She joined the Italian Cultural Society when she moved to Bethesda. She has  been contributing with the editing, writing and translating articles for the monthly newsletter Poche Parole and has been part of the instructors team for several years. Valentina has been tutoring children and adults in Latin and Ancient Greek since she was a high-school student herself and is very passionate about teaching and communicating with her students. At the ICS she has been teaching Italian grammar at different levels as well as special courses such as “Discover Abruzzo”. 

She loves traveling, reading, baking and street art among many other things.

Sofia Caligiuri

I am an Italian-Naturalized American artist who lives and works in the Metropolitan Area of Washington DC.

I was born in Calabria, Italy, and later moved to Rome where I studied as a painter at the Academy of Fine Arts under Alberto Ziveri.  My favorite teachers included Fiorella Diamantini and Arnoldo Ciarrocchi, an exquisite Master Etcher who also taught Maccari.  We used to have etching lessons on Saturday mornings, while eating pizza bianca sprinkled with oil and salt accompanied by a couple sips of wine.  In this way, students enjoyed both intellectual and physical nourishment. I remember that it felt like a mystical experience each time. I illustrated several journals in Italy. Published two books “Le Novellette” Artemide Edizioni, Roma Italy 2004 and “The Fief, a story of love and other virtues” Artemide Edizioni, 2002 Roma, Italy.

I have held exhibitions of my work in Italy and in the United States.My imagery emphasizes the idea that the impermanence of all phenomena underlies the search for the meaning of life. Therefore, I follow memories and thoughts as Traces that ultimately will bring me to find Evidences of how my life developed and what type of evolution I experienced.  In other terms, my work is a tool that I use to get to know myself better and especially to discover what kind of mission I have in this life and fully develop my own potential.

Dr. Annelise Brody Morani

Chair of the Board, Executive Committee

Annelise received her laurea in comparative literature at the university of Bologna with a thesis on Dante and the Rossetti family. She received also her MA and Ph.D in Italian literature from the JHU with a thesis on Virginity in Early Italian literature. She then went on teaching as a faculty member at various college institutions joining Washington University in Saint Louis in 2005 where she taught Italian language, literature and cinema at all levels. She also served as language coordinator until 2018. She developed and taught online language courses as a winner of a grant in language and technology research at her institution (2014) She became proficient in using both Blackboard and Canvas platforms.

Her main research interest is in Medieval Italian literature and in particular in literature and ethics. She published papers on Petrarch and Boccaccio, presented at numerous conferences.

Annelise is also a passionate yoga practitioner and a certified yoga instructor in Hatha yoga and ELDOA 1&2. She has been teaching yoga to dancers, children as well as seniors. Her focus is on improving mobility and spinal health.

Laura Loddo Moticka

Born in Venice so many years ago, I graduated from the University Ca’ Foscari of Venice with an M.A. in Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures with a focus on teaching a foreign language. I have been teaching Italian since 2002 to students in high schools and adults. I also studied singing at the Conservatory.

I have an adolescent kid, whom I call “Il mio porcospino”. Together with him and my husband, I like to travel the world and especially explore Italy.

In my free time, I like to read historical novels and detective stories; I enjoy listening to music of all kinds and singing in choirs. I also love to bake and make jewelry using Murano glass and all sorts of stones. I must admit that I am also a workaholic who is always in the “I am a teacher and need to find materials and realia for my students” mode.

Antonella Salvatore Pellegrino

Antonella Salvatore studied classics in Italy where she earned her university degree. “I attended specialized courses for teaching Italian to foreigners at the Universita’ Ca’ Foscari in Venice, the Universita’ per Stranieri in Perugia, and at George Mason University in VA. I have been teaching Italian here in the Washington area since 2005 in which time I have taught college courses at American University, adult courses for the Italian Cultural Society, and courses for native Italian-speaking children at the middle school level.” She adds, “I have a great passion for the Italian language and its literature deepened since my school days at the Orazio Flacco Classical high school. (Flacco is the poet who coined “Carpe diem” to mean “take heed!” or “seize the day!” and who was born not far from my home town in Basilicata.) “I love my work and the language of “that beautiful country where the use of “si” for yes resounds!” (Dante Alighieri, Inferno, Canto XXXIII). She lives in DC with her husband Roberto and her daughter Elena.

Felicia Toscano

Director of the ICS Music School

Felicia Toscano is a classical guitarist, from Taranto, Italy. She started taking guitar lessons since she was 10 with Master Duilio Bellone.

She is a teaching veteran in  several County Public Schools in Italy . She holds a National Board Certified teacher of Italian for elementary school (2006). She holds Certificate  ICon AP Italian Language and Culture as a Tutor. She taught Italian language at G. Tosi elementary school, D. Purificato Elementary and Middle school , and Gramsci school  in Rome.

She entered the local Conservatorio “G. Paisiello” in Taranto  (which is Paisiello’s native town) ranking first among the entrance exam candidates. In Taranto, she studied with Master Pino Forresu, graduating in 1999 with a Masters Degree in Music. Than she studied Musical Interpretation with Senio and Alirio Diaz. She got a Permanent Certification as Music Teacher for Public Schools at “Roma 3” University in Rome.

She graduated as Orff-Schulwerk Teacher Education at S.I.M.E.O.S. School in Verona, and she attended Music Therapy Courses in Assisi (PG). She moved to Rome and she taught in several Public Middle and High Schools. She was on the board of private music schools and cultural associations such as “Music Risonanze Association” Rome – EUR and “Music and Arts Association” Fonte Laurentino – EUR.

From 2015 to 2017, she taught as Adjunct Guitar Professor at the Conservatorio Santa Cecilia of Rome. She was a volunteer teacher in the Down Syndrome children association in Rome and the Spastic Association in Taranto. In the course of her career, she has been awarded many first-place prizes in national and international guitar classic and folk music competitions: Spanish Music Festival of Puglia, Music Festival “Baroque City”, Guitar Festival of Fiuggi, Great Jubilee of 2000, International Competition Ferrero Luigi Riva dei Tessali, and European Music Competition “Pythagoras.”

Felicia formed several artistic partnerships with Spanish orchestras such as Acords Joves Orchestra de Montilivi Girona directed from Euken Master Imanol Ledesma. She appeared on stage both as soloist and with orchestras and various chamber ensembles. She is a highly distinguished and well-known seminar senior lecturer in the area of Mediterranean rites and guitar music analysis.

With her innovative and lively approach to music education, Felicia Toscano founded and directed Canarios Guitar Orchestra, which she conducted in several concerts, competitions, and performances. Felicia believes in fostering a tuneful, beautiful, artful learning community based on music education, and works as a concert performer and teacher in Italy and US. She also has a certification to teach in elementary, middle and high schools in Italy.